Okay was that title too clickbait-y? It’s a pretty good description I’d have to say. I’ve killed succulents. I’ve killed aloe. I’ve even killed a cactus. A cactus!!! But I decided to turn a new leaf (please don’t leave yet) and I went out and got three plants in late February. Then I got bold and brought home three more early this month. I’m at capacity here. I’m learning a lot and checking my plants everyday. I’ll tell you what I got and how I’m dealing.
Going from the plant world FBI’s Most Wanted to the plant world’s…kid at a lemonade stand? Non-threatening and unassuming citizen? I don’t know what we are to each other right now but my plants are showing life and I’m happy.
Despite what you may read elsewhere there are no “secrets” to taking care of plants. This article isn’t an “Area Woman Finds One Simple Trick, Gardeners Hate Her!” I’m begging you, don’t put essential oils on your plants. I’ve been on Pinterest long enough. Anyway, this article is about how I think you should purchase or acquire plants at a beginner level and how to make them not die. I don’t know maybe next week a plague will visit upon my plants and all my advice will be rendered null…Stay tuned.
Getting to it. I bought:
- A coffee plant (4″ tall)
- A peace lily (8″ tall)
- A luna croton (4″ tall)
- A florida beauty (4″ tall)
- A janet craig compacta (?? right?? 4″ tall)
- A golden pothos (7″ circumference)
I know these all have scientific names just bear with me. Now, things you should consider before getting a plant: How much light do you have? What is your climate like? How much does your indoor temperature fluctuate? How much time do you have to pay attention to a plant at all? I know, it’s obviously not a kid or a dog but you do have to actually look at it and touch it occasionally.
I used this tool to help narrow down what kind of plants I wanted: http://www.costafarms.com/plant-finder#!/
Scroll down under the alphabet and you can change your search to reflect plant type, lighting, perks, color, and personality. Maybe a plant is kinda like a puppy. A small, green, dirt puppy.
How I’m keeping my plants alive
- Read the tag that comes with your plant then do your own research to supplement it. I found that the tags on my plants weren’t super accurate. Tag said lowlight website says happiest in medium-high light? When this happens keep digging. When in doubt most plants probably want more light. Your plant is probably not enjoying your windowless bathroom. Plants can actually get burned by the sun, so if you notice spots set your buddy further from the window or in indirect light.
- Your plants will likely not all fall on one watering schedule. Forget about it. Instead, consult your research. Figure out if your plant prefers to be kept moist or if it likes to get a little dry between waterings. You probably don’t need a big flow chart to manage the watering but perhaps set an alarm so you don’t forget those sensitive plants.
- Observe your plants. Watch for signs that the plant’s needs aren’t being met. If your plant’s leaves are sagging that may indicate overwatering. If its leaves turn pale it probably needs more sunlight. If a non-creeping plant is creeping towards the light it needs more light. Other considerations are humidity and direct vs. indirect sunlight. Make changes to your plant’s surroundings as necessary and of course as reasonable. After all, they’re plants not puppies.