For the first four years of my adult life, post college, the extent of my house plants were a few sad looking succulents. I had other things on my mind and plants just weren't a priority.
However, once we moved into, renovated, and decorated our new home, I realized how much I love having green around me. So when fall came and I was making my to do lists, "get more plants" was written down amongst other things such as "organize the basement" and "hang art."
I had put my 3 dying succulents outside for the summer. When I found them at the end of the summer, one had bit the dust and the other two were thriving. I brought those two in and they seem to have a new lease on life. I keep those on my kitchen window sill because I know they need lots of sun, they are dessert plants after all. (what's a dessert plant? lol-ing over here about misspelling "desert" as "dessert," so I'm just going to leave it and hope it gives you a good chuckle too.)
Anyway, since that's about how systematic my plant regime was and I had added close to ten plants to my home, I realized I was going to need to clean up my act. So far this is what I've started doing and it's been working:
- Set a day once a week to take care of your plant babies. Set an alarm on your phone. Make sure it's a time that you're usually home and free to do 15 minutes of plant care.
- When you alarm goes off, water everything the way it needs. Even if a plant doesn't need water that often, at least you know you watered it "2 Tuesday ago" rather than "sometime during the fall."
- Something that really helped me understand how to treat each plant was learning what their native climate would have been like. A succulent belongs in the desert, a fiddle leaf fig in the jungle, and so on. Obviously my house is neither of those things, but I can try and treat them as closely to that as possible.
- Know when to buy fake. I have little wall shelves I wanted succulents in, but I knew there just wasn't enough light for them to survive. Faux plants are so lifelike these days, I bet no one can tell.
- Make sure someone waters your plants when you leave on vacation. I forgot this one while in Austria and came back to a few sad plant buddies.
- Finally, remember that a potted plant you bought for $13 has already lasted longer than a cut flower bouquet that costs the same amount of money. Don't feel too guilty if it takes you a while to learn how to keep them alive. It's ok!
I would give you a list of my plants, but I honestly don't know what most of them are. That's what happens when you buy plants based on how cute they are and don't pay attention to what they're called.