How to be a good plant parent

June 25, 2016

Are you the kind of person that loves to look at a pretty plant but fear that it will die as soon as you touch it? Sometimes it can be so hard to keep those leafy goodies alive while you're also busy trying to slay at life. It's important to have plants around you, they make you happier and healthier, science says so, but it's just so darn hard to keep the things alive and breathing.

 

Peace Lily

 

We've collected a few plants that, with a little TLC and the occasional drop of water, will survive any situations as well as a few handy tips in taking care of them like the good plant mumma that you are.

 

 

Succulents and Cacti

 

Although people say that you don’t have to do anything to keep succulents and cacti alive, I’ve learnt, after purchasing my first office plant, that this isn’t always the case. Turns out complete neglect of your succulent or cacti is just as likely to kill them as much as too much love (another thing I have done to a succulent). But their maintenance requirements still aren’t high enough to deter the amateur plant lover away.

 

 

Care: There are a few tips and tricks in keeping these cute little suckers (see what I did there?) alive. First of all, try not to leave them in direct midday sun as it can burn the plant (do not burn your baby).

Instead, leave them in brightly lit areas with lots of sunlight. Watering should be done once a week, but instead of pouring it a cup of water, wait until the dirt is completely dry and soak the plant in water for a few minutes. On top of this, make sure your pot has a drainage hole in the bottom so the poor guy doesn't drown.

 

Finally, give your succulent some attention, no one wants to be ignored. If you do this you can keep an eye on any change in colour, which may mean you need to water more or less.

 

Where to buy: Bunnings or buy these cute-as succulent collar pins if you really don’t want to commit to the plant life.

 

 

 

Aquatic plants (or water-based plants)

 

Growing an indoor water plant is probably the easiest plant to look after. Literally any container that will hold water will support an aquatic plant (even a shoe). Aquatic plants will also look out for you and actually improve indoor air quality by removing CO2 and other contaminants from the air around them. How nice is that?

 

Some common water-based plants which will survive in your house are:

·         Arrow Head

·         Dumbcane Dieffenbachia (also sounds like a Harry Potter spell)

·         Philodendron

·         Pothos (Devil’s Ivy)

 

Care: Be sure to change the water every 4-6 weeks and if you want to get tricky, you can add in a liquid fertiliser to really refrain from killing it, but it’s not necessary. Algae can grow on clear vases, so choose a darker colour vase/glass/jar to block out some light and slow the growth of algae. All you need to do after this is admire the leafy green goodness now in your living room.

 

Where to buy: My grandmothers backyard. Alternatively you can purchase them from Bunnings

 

 

 

 

 

Peace Lilies

 

These guys are perfect indoor plants and make for a cool, leafy bedroom friend. They left their mark on 1970's indoor decor and have recently made their way back into trendy-ville as they are easy, breezy and beautiful.

 

Care: The Peace Lilie doesn't like to hang out in the sun too much, they prefer to meander in the lightly lit shadows of your house. They don't need a whole lot of water and when they are ready for a drink they'll let you know by dropping their little leaves, as if to say "Hey Mum/Dad, I'm feeling a bit parched over here, would you mind filling me up?" 

 

Where to buy: Usually these are available at your local nursery.

 

 

 

Artificial plants

 

Artificial plants are for those who really can’t do the whole plant thing. If you’ve tried and tested to keep some greens alive, or if you’re not willing to make the commitment to a lively plant, these plastic plants are your new best friend.

 

Care: Absolutely fucking nothing. Put these decorative babies in your house and remember to keep the dust off them when guests come over. If you do notice a guest casually fondling a leaf to check if it’s real or not, you know you’ve picked the right plant for you.

 

Where to buy: Any cheap shops. But if you want the legit fake stuff try IKEA for their quality and range.

IKEA artificial plant 

 

 

 

 

Dominique is a Novocastrian with a passion for writing, eating and patting dogs. 

 

When she's not working hard for the money in Marketing, she can be found hanging out with her two greyhounds, her girlfriend and most likely, drinking a beer. She blogs/pretends to be an established adult here or you can follow her on Instagram @domfoxx .

 

Image sources: One, Two and Three.

 

 

 

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