The biggest mistake you're making when you buy plants online

These days, investing in a little bit of greenery for your home seems like a rite of passage. Not only are plants totally on-trend, they also help purify your home's air (which is important) and have been proven to reduce stress, according to a study in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology. Plus, as Gary L. Altman, associate director of the Horticultural Therapy Program at Rutgers University, told Prevention, "Plants can be used to increase the relative humidity indoors, reduce noise, screen unattractive areas, and moderate room temperature by shading a bright, sunny window." In other words, they're a must-have! 

If you don't have easy access to a garden center (or just don't feel like going to one), you can easily buy plants online. However, doing so comes with a few risks and it's important to know exactly what to do and what not to do to ensure you're spending your hard-earned cash on plants that won't die immediately.

When buying plants online, read the reviews first

One of the biggest mistakes people make when buying plants online is neglecting to read the reviews. Just as they do for online clothes or kitchenware purchases, reviews can help you determine whether the retailer and products on offer are satisfactory. "This will help you set realistic expectations based on previous customer experiences," Erin Marino, director of brand marketing for The Sill, told Bob Vila. In other words, there'll be less chance of disappointment (or a dead plant showing up on your doorstep).

Another common mistake people make purchasing plants online make is not reading all the information about the type of plant they have in their shopping cart, including what's needed to keep it healthy. If you don't take into consideration the type of environment the plant needs to survive, you're setting yourself up for failure. Make sure you have a sunny spot for plants that need tons of light, and a large area for plants that will grow bigger and wider. In other words, it's crucial that you do your research before you click to buy.

Finally, once the plants arrive, check to see if the soil is wet. If so, it means the plant is at a high risk for developing root rot, and you need to repot it immediately to save it, according to A Natural Curiosity.