If you’ve started collecting houseplants this year, you’re not alone. And while it’s easy to buy plants (and stare at them fondly from your couch), it can be tough to take care of them properly if you don’t have a green thumb. If you’re unsure of how to keep your plants alive, let these informative apps help you out.
Most of these apps offer general plant care instructions, while a few have a more focused approach to things. Some are better at identifying plant types, and others excel at helping you figure out why your plant is dying and how to remedy the situation. The best plant care apps for most people are the ones that take a general approach, while those with a more niche focus will likely be better suited for those needed answers to a specific problem.
Every plant has unique care requirements regarding its water, sunlight, and fertilizer intake. Each one will also be susceptible to different types of issues. And if you don’t happen to live near a plant nursery, these apps will help you keep your plants not just happy, but thriving. What a good plant parent you are!
Update, 9/14/21: Checked content for accuracy. Updated iOS link for Planta.
Planta (Free, with in-app purchases) is a solid choice for all-around plant care advice. It offers everything you could want from a plant care app, from plant recommendations based on your skill level to care reminders for watering your plants. It even has a built-in plant journal tool that lets you keep track of your plants’ progress (including photographs), and that of your green thumb. Planta’s only real downside is that it’s only available for iOS—we’d love to see it on Android, too.
The app offers step-by-step guides for caring for your plants and even has integrated reminders for watering, misting, fertilizing, cleaning, and repotting your plants. All of these tools make it easy to own and maintain a variety of plants. And if you’re looking to grow your plant collection, you can find recommendations based on room types and lighting conditions.
Planta also has a handy plant identification tool. Just snap a picture of a plant in the app, and it’ll tell you what kind it is and what you’ll need to do to take care of it. This feature is perfect for identifying any houseplants you already have, as well as for identifying any gorgeous plants you see while out on a leisurely walk.
You will need to upgrade to a paid subscription plan to take advantage of certain features in the app. A monthly subscription runs $7.99, while the three-month option is $17.99, and the one-year plan is $45.99. Premium features include plant identification via a photo, care scheduling beyond watering reminders, the light meter, and plant recommendations.
With PictureThis (Free, with in-app purchases), you can quickly identify plants and learn if they are toxic to humans, animals, or both. The app also puts extensive resources at your fingertips for determining if a plant is sick, how it is sick, and what the options are for restoring it to its former glory. It even has options for connecting you with a professional botanist team if you need serious help with a plant.
PictureThis is available for both iOS and Android devices and has a community of over 30 million users able to help you identify and learn about all types of flowers, trees, succulents, and other plant types. The app can identify over 10,000 kinds of plants with 98% accuracy, thanks to its AI-backed engine (and regular input from plant experts and specialists).
The app has a decent collection of plant care tips, and you can enable its watering reminder so you’ll never forget to water your plants ever again. Its clean simple interface is easy enough for anyone to use, and the app’s robust community allows you to connect with other plant lovers around the world. You can even take pictures of all of your plants and put them on your profile, and browse plant collections from other global users.
Upgrading to a premium plan unlocks all of the app’s features, like unlimited plant identification and personalized advice for horticulture experts. Premium plans start at $2.99 per week.
Vera (Free) has an extensive library of plant care guides with information aimed at new plant parents and seasoned experts alike. It’s got tips for everything—from repotting Monsteras to dealing with unwanted pests—and it uses simple language to keep things easy to read and understand.
The lovely app is full of helpful resources for taking care of each of your plants. Its schedule creation tool lets you input every plant you have and receive a customized watering time (and reminders) for each. You can also create a profile for each of your plants, along with their name, birth/adoption date, and photos of your plants.
Vera offers a dedicated space for you to log plant care activity, and to document each plant’s journey with you, from their first sprout photos that show how beautiful the morning light looks on them. The app is available for both iOS and Android devices, so everyone will be able to reap the benefits here.
If you’re looking to make plants your whole life, you need Blossom (Free, with in-app purchases). The app has an impressive amount of information about plants, from individual plant details to expansive and colorful photo galleries, like “8 Colorful Houseplants for the Bedroom” and “Best Indoor Plants for Clean Air.” It’s also a great source of plant inspiration!
Blossom can accurately identify over 10,000 plants, succulents, flowers, and trees, and provide all kinds of details, features, and plant care tips for each. It also lets you input your personal plant collection and receive push notification reminders for taking care of each. The app is only available for iOS users (sorry, Android), but makes it easy to learn more about the plants around you, find the perfect plants for your home, and to live your greenest life.
All of these features are available for free, but in limited quantity. You can unlock unlimited usage with a premium subscription, however, which starts at $6.99 per month.