How to Babyproof House Plants
Curious babies and toddlers love exploring anything that piques their interest – often to the dismay of their parents. Unfortunately, this can also see them destroying precious houseplants! From plucking petals to ripping leaves and taking soil from pots, they can cause a lot of damage. But is there a way to keep your little one away from them? Absolutely – it’s time to childproof those plants!
Involving young children in watering and tending plants is valuable and fosters an appreciation for nature. However, keeping them and your house plants safe is also essential. To achieve this balance, try baby-proofing your home greenery.
As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you.
It’s not only about dirt and damage. Some plants are poisonous and can make your toddler seriously ill. Thankfully, this doesn’t have to mean the end of your indoor gardening hobby. In most instances, it takes considerable ingestion for any harm to be caused. Generally, these plants have a bitter taste, making it hard to eat more than one bite. If your little one consumes too much, they may experience some nausea – but it will pass quickly.
If you have small children, research before bringing plants into your home. A quick Google search can usually provide enough insight. A plant you should particularly avoid is Dieffenbachia – even its juice can cause harm to delicate skin or eyes.
If you are worried your child has chowed down on a plant and are unsure if it’s safe, be sure to reach out to your doctor immediately. Don’t forget to find out the Latin name of any house plants that could cause concern.
Related post: How do you childproof a refrigerator water dispenser?
Keep Out of Reach of Children
It sounds like a no-brainer, but toddlers can have ninja-like skills if they are determined enough. Create shelves on the wall, place them on tables, in cabinets, or on a sturdy plant stand. Keeping plants out of reach from children is undoubtedly one of the safest options, but it’s hard to do if your plant is large or its pot is too heavy. Also, you won’t be able to fully appreciate your plants if they are hidden from sight. To make it work, find a spot near a window or select plants that can tolerate the shade or don’t require too much light.
Related post: How to Babyproof a Fireplace
Create a Display Cabinet
Transform a glass display cabinet into a beautiful greenhouse where your most cherished plants can be safely kept away from wandering hands. This is ideal for tropical plants since humidity is easier to maintain. A great option is the IKEA Greenhouse cabinet, and there are also plenty of options on Amazon.
Related post: Baby Proof Baseboard Heaters
Choose Hardy, Safe Plants
Choose safe, child-friendly houseplants that won’t cause a problem if your little one manages to nibble on them. But, of course, they won’t be tasty, so they shouldn’t get past the first bite, either way.
Consider adding these beautiful, pet- and people-safe options to your home:
- Aspidistra Eliator – Cast-Iron Plant
- Chlorophytum Comosum – Spider Plant
- Calathea – Peacock Plant
- Asplenium Nidus/Nest Fern
- Areca – Areca Palm
- Musa Dwarf Cavendish – Banana Plant
- Beaucarnea Recurvata – Elephant’s Foot.
These plants will bring life and beauty to your home without any worries.
If you’re opting for a larger plant to be placed on the floor, get a robust, weighty pot to keep it steady. Your toddler may attempt to pull themselves up on it, so make sure it won’t topple over.
Children need to explore the world around them with their hands, so it’s best to steer clear of spiny plants like cacti that can cause painful scratches or skin irritation. Opt for more kid-friendly flora instead
Related post: Baby Proof Dog Food and Water Bowls
A Pot Within a Pot
You can place your plant, pot, and all, into a larger outer pot with tall sides to block access to soil. You should measure your plant and pot and know the minimum height to keep your toddler out of the soil.
Related post: How to Babyproof Your TV and video game console
Use Cling film
A simple and inexpensive solution to the problem is to wrap cling film around the plant pot and the stem, using multiple layers for added strength. This should prevent toddlers from sticking their hands in the soil, though it can be easily torn for older children. Additionally, it can be detrimental to the plant, as it becomes harder to check soil moisture and water.
Related post: How to babyproof your record player
Use Your Plants as a Learning Opportunity
Even young children can be taught what is off-limits. Encourage your child to respect the boundaries you set around your plants. Keep reiterating that they are not to touch the plants and ensure the ones in reach are safe to handle should an accident happen. Once your little one grows up a bit, you can give them a chance to take care of the plants. Get them their own watering can and a few plants to look after. A great choice is the spider plant – it’s fast-growing and easy to care for and can also be propagated through cuttings.
Related post: How To Babyproof Drawers and Cabinets and Bookshelf
Install a Safety Gate
Safety gates may usually be found at the top and bottom of staircases or protecting a fireplace. Still, there’s another use for them that you may not have thought of: houseplants! If you have heavy, large potted plants that you can’t move anywhere else, installing a safety gate around them is a great idea. Although it might seem unnecessary to buy one just for this purpose, it’s ideal if you have the extra space and a spare gate. Installing it around a bay window full of plants is perfect since an adjustable gate will fit around them perfectly.
Accidents happen, even if your plants are safely tucked away. For example, a misplaced ball could take out a pot, or your child could hit a growth spurt and reach for a plant in a cupboard. Don’t panic, though – your plant isn’t doomed! Instead, clean up the mess and assess the damage – maybe some leaves need a trim? If a large chunk has broken off, your plant may be able to regrow. And if not, you can always start again with some fresh cuttings!
Related post: What are the best baby gates for stairs with banisters?
Wrap up- How to babyproof house plants
It can be a challenge having a baby in the house and an extensive collection of plants. But it also has tremendous value. Your child will grow up with greenery around them, learn that you have to take care of your environment, and hopefully develop a good dose of love for nature.