5 Painfully Obvious Lessons I’ve Learned About Keeping Plants Alive
Happy National Water A Flower Day!
I have to believe that this holiday was created by one of two people. Number one: someone who sincerely cares about plants, their well-being, and gardens all over the world.
Or, it was person number two: the one who literally needs a reminder to water their plants. (E.g. Me)
It seems like an odd thing to need to remember, but it is a thing! As a very green "green thumb," I'm still learning just how much work it takes to keep plants alive. So, if you're also new at this, and perhaps thinking of making yourself a garden this Summer, here are some "duh" moments I've had.
It's tiny and easy to lose, but the little tag that comes with a plant is a lifesaver (literally). It tells you point blank how much or how little to water your plants, how much sun they need, everything!
Take it from someone who's overwatered many a houseplant, this little piece of paper is amazing,
"Won't any soil work for a plant?"
No, it will not! I asked myself the same thing, and got laughed at in the store. You want soil with a little extra "oomph" in it, because odds are, you aren't going to fertilize your garden yourself every. single. weekend.
So. You bought a plant, it was beautiful for awhile, then it died and didn't come back. That's because it was probably an "annual" plant!
Annual plants bloom, grow and die, all within a year. If you want plants to come back, you're looking for something that says "perennial" on the label.
I'm 100% guilty of neglecting my houseplants of light, and I am ashamed.
If you are working with plants like that, make sure to put them in the sunniest place in your home (assuming they like sunlight. Some don't!). If you don't have a place that gets enough sun, go for a room with a lot of light.
That may even mean putting the plants under a warm lamp. Not too hot though; you'll want it like Goldilocks. Fake sunlight is better than none.
Like a human grows out of beds over the years, plants grow out of pots. Just because it came in a small one, doesn't mean it stays in a small one.
You'll want to transplant it pretty quickly, but gently. Transplanting is a shock to the system. Make sure you break up the roots a bit so they have plenty of room to expand!
Keeping a plant confined in a small space is a recipe for quick death.