Since turning my little condo into a space with more plants than furniture, I’ve concluded that it’s true — #plantsmakepeoplehappy — even more so when the plants are kept alive. This is the place to be if you’re a relatively new plant parent like myself and hoping to keep all your babies well and thriving!
As a plant mom, I can tell you the two major factors that turn the happy emotions you usually get when you’re looking at your plants into sad/angry/throw-something-off-a-bridge ones:
1. Lack of patience
Unless you have your camera on time-lapse and pointed at your houseplants at all times (which would be pretty cool), chances are, you won’t notice them growing half a millimetre on a daily basis. Are there things you can do to help your plant grow? Yes! Do these results happen overnight? Sadly, no.
As someone who started her plant journey with succulents and cacti, I can tell you that overwatering is the main cause of death for these super hands-off and normally easy-to-care-for plants. I just could not wait to water them, feed them fertilizer, talk to them and just love them like I love hot chocolate. Apparently, this love can be suffocating and is not reciprocated with flowers or boxes of candy. It will drown your plant babies, causing their roots to rot and all their leaves to fall off. Sad face.
Be patient. Have a watering schedule and KNOW YOUR PLANTS. My monstera deliciosa gets a thorough water about once a week, maybe once every 10 days during the wintertime, while my succulents only need a drink once every 2 weeks in the winter!
If you really feel the need to show your plants some love, sing to them. I read somewhere that it helps. Also helps if you’re a good singer.
2. Not reading your environment
I live in a condo and it took a while before I realized how dry the air was from our centralized heating system. The humidity levels drop to about 20% during the winter! Humans are most comfortable around 35% - 45% humidity, so you can imagine how drying this can be for you AND your plants. Humidifiers only help so much (I have five of them lol).
That being said, check the soil of your plants often. Most succulent and cacti plants only require water when soil is fully dry. I do notice that they dry out a lot quicker in my condo during the winter, so I adjust accordingly — this is also true for my other houseplants that require varying levels of watering.
Although collecting plants in your home may be fun, make sure to do research on each one you add to your home (thanks, Google). There is no one-size-fits-all method for keeping plants happy, but this learning process is definitely part of the fun! (Unless your plants die… that always sucks.)
- Pine Flora