Plants for My Brown Thumb
I have never owned a (living) plant for more than 6 months.
When I moved, I threw all of the dead herbs, succulents, vacant pots of soil, and old bags of potting mix down the trash chute. "Enough is enough, I'm going to have some healthy greens in my home!"
It is now month 3, and I have not lost a single plant and I now have 9 potted plants in my cozy apartment. Not only are they alive, they are thriving. I'm thrilled.
Here are a few tips to keep your plants alive:
Name Your Plants
It sounds ridiculous - but for some reason, pet names attach an emotional element to plant care that goes a long way when you are too lazy to water, or don't feel like checking the moisture of the soil. It also reminds you to pay attention and tend to your plants as a personal responsibility rather than as an inanimate accessory in your living room.
Pot in proper soil
I should win an award for most succulents killed. People make fun of me, "those things thrive in the desert with no water." Yeah, well - I was potting it in organic vegetable soil and that apparently kills succulents. I bought a $5 bag of cactus soil and I can't keep my succulents the same cute size anymore - they're exploding!
Research your plants and the soil that they belong in.
Develop a Schedule
During the weekdays, my plants occupy their decorative positions. They perch on shady bookshelves, on coffee tables, and on dining room tables. My fiddle leaf fig, Figbert, stands by the TV and other than some dusting, is untouched. As soon as Saturday morning comes, all of the pots are filed out the door and onto my sunny LA patio for some sun and watering. It's good for the plants and good for you. Saturdays are sun-days, Sundays are water days. Monday, everyone comes back inside.
Handle the Pests
Don't ignore symptoms of pests and take preventative measures to keep them at bay. There are plenty of online forums, help sites, and blog (you're probably reading this for help or affirmation that your plant-growing methods are sound).
If I can do it, so can you. Believe in yourself and your diligent research, love your plants, and enjoy them as they flourish and bring warmth into your living space.