If plants are your thing, then I hope this post excites you. I’ll be the first to admit I’m an avid #plantmom enthusiast & my obsession with my current indoor jungle could be deemed concerning to those not sharing this leafy passion. Based on my IG Stories, there are times when I go 10 – frames deep posting plant spam & TBH I never feel like I’ve shared enough about them! There are so many positive things indoor plants can bring to your home, not only aesthetically but also when it comes to boosting mental & physical health. I could go all day long about why you need them in your home, mostly because of how happy they have made me feel when I see how well they’re doing as a result of my care.
This is my 3rd post about my (now OUR) current indoor garden because back in October, I became the adoptive parent to Thomas’s plants when we moved in together. So it’s safe to say our living room has become a legit jungle. I have to admit, I was nervous about the transition for my plants because they were leaving my old apartment location that received 10x more light than where we are currently. We still get a lot of Eastern light, but not as much as they’ve been accustomed to since purchasing them throughout the year. But I have to admit, I’m beyond relieved how well they’ve been doing since the move, which was traumatic enough for them.
Not only has my most finicky plant sprouted 3 new leaves in one month (I KNOW, CRAZY!) but my other two plants, which I’ve watched grow gradually over the year, have become legit beasts overnight (in a great way!) Maybe it’s the new blended family that we have going on here that’s encouraging tremendous growth or that myth that all plants have a “listening vine” is in fact true (I think it is…); nonetheless, everyone here seems to be very happy with their current situation which makes me jump for joy (literally.)
Which reminds me – always talk positively to your plants, especially if they’re struggling to grow. Like most of us, plants react to positive affirmations & encouragement. My plants’ growth is the result of myself speaking to them daily with an upbeat, positive pitch in my voice (which is most likely the vibrations of my voice similar to the buzz of a bee that triggers a natural reaction.)
LET ME INTRODUCE YOU TO OUR BRADY BUNCH, BLENDED PLANT FAMILY
You’ll notice I refer to some of them with pronouns – IDK why but it seems natural when writing/talking about them. If you’re a plant mom/dad, then you get it. No need to explain further.
Sansevieria Laurentii (Baby Snake Plant)
TBH this variety of snake plant is the one that truly showed me that some snake plants enjoy water & sunlight. I saw it growing like crazy after just a few short weeks, being placed in the sunniest window and getting weekly water. I guess like all humans, same species of plants can have different personalities & preferences too. *This variety of snake plant has the yellow/lime green border, unlike the larger snake plant above which is a more solid green color.
Sansevieria Zeylanica (Adult Snake Plant)
This guy is one of my favorites – he’s also one I was so worried about for the longest time. Unlike every other snake plant I’ve owned, this one LOVES water & sunlight. I saw it struggling for months in my old place and tried every thing I read online about how to make it happy (indirect light & starvation.) Nothing changed, but nothing got better either. So one day when I was watering my plants, I accidentally watered this one like it was the Fiddle Leaf (whoops..) I figured I’d sent it to death row and mentally prepared myself for the devastation. Instead, I woke up to a new baby sprout and the tips of the existing snakes started looking green and pointier, NEW GROWTH! Since then, I’ve watered this guy 1-2x a week and placed him in front of one of the less sunnier windows. He’s been thriving ever since!
Another one of Thomas’s that I’ve adopted as my own. I’d say this one is the easiest one we own, despite its enormous size. I started giving it more water in hopes the little sprout it’s growing in the middle will finally reveal itself (its been happily chilling there for 3 months lol.) These guys are very durable too; my mom has a few she keeps on our patio during the spring & summer and only brings inside during the winter to prevent snow & frost exposure. These plants are great solutions to filling awkward corners of a room too, which we’ve found with ours in our apartment layout.
The most high-maintenance plant we own, which is also the one that sprouted 3 new leaves in the month of November! The trick I’ve found for its care, as well as all of my plants for that fact, is to water it generously 2x a week. I know that sounds aggressive but it makes sense why it’s doing so well with two rounds of water – the pot it’s in is somewhat large and probably doesn’t allow all the roots to get enough water the first time around. Not saying that will work for every fiddle leaf fig (it also needs plenty of sunlight) but it has proven beneficial towards ours. I’ve also made sure to put ours on a large standing planter facing our sunniest window & rotate it 1/4 each week. Sounds like a lot but it’s honestly not much work once you get the hang of a watering/plant care routine.
Bird of Paradise
Thomas got this plant with me at the same time as when I got my Fiddle Leaf Fig. And just like the Fig, this one too also enjoys plenty of sunshine & water. So these two are window buddies at the moment. Since getting him, he’s grown 2-3 new big leaves and seems to get taller each day! We hope this one will grow to be our largest over the years, with proper care.
For the longest time, I regretted getting this one which makes me so sad to even admit! I didn’t see any growth or development in it for months (I got her at the same time as my adult Pothos) and I was fearing the worst, given it’s a PALM living in a NYC apartment. But like my other non-growing plants, I decided to give her just a bit more water than normal. Literally the next morning, I saw light green baby palm stems sprouting from the top. She’s been growing like wild ever since.
This poor pretty girl had a moment where I thought I lost her, after leaving it for a week and not providing an auto-water solution. Her leaves & stems were wilted and low in such defeat, which made me so sad to discover. Thomas suggested giving her extra water and seeing what happens. I was very cynical about it, thinking she wouldn’t come back to life. Thankfully I was so wrong and woke up to her leaves and stems lifted much higher. It took a good 2 months to get her to where she is now, but you can see that taking some time & giving it some love along with being patient has proven to be successful.
Again, here’s a plant I didn’t see any development in for over a year as well. One day I mentioned “out-loud” on my IG Stories that it wasn’t showing any change & hasn’t been for 18 months. This is why I believe plants have a listening vine because the next morning, it literally had 4 new leaves (I saw them because they’re a lighter color than the older ones.) So next step came more water and more positive words of encouragement. All I can say is LOOK AT IT NOW – above when I first got it in May 2018, after it sprouted some new leaves in June 2019, & what it looks like now in December 2019.
(3) Golden Pothos (Baby, Teen, & Adult)
I had one, Thomas had one, and I somehow ended up with one more despite what the packaging of my order said (expected a diff plant.) Nonetheless, these 3 Pothos have been so delightful & truly show how much growth can happen in a short amount of time. For instance, my “adult” Pothos (which is called that only because it’s the largest of the three) has grown exponentially over the 18 months I’ve owned it. Thomas’s and the baby one has shown quick growth as a result of plenty of water too. All in all, Pothos are very easy to manage & care for. Just place them near a window and when it doubt, more water is always better.
Below is the growth of my “adult” Golden Pothos since I got it in May 2018 – to one year later in June 2019 – to today in December 2019
We’ve also welcomes some new members to our jungle since moving in, which have adapted incredibly to our delight.
I love the zebra stripes meet crinkle-cut french fry vibe this plant presents to the world. What’s so funny about it is that I’ve noticed it get “perkier” each evening, starting around 5pm. It sits on my desk in my office, which doesn’t get the most light, and during the day it looks like a relaxed moppy-haired plant. But by the time the sun sets, its leaves seem to rise up and turn into an afro. So cool to witness how it can transition and adapt with nature.
This cutie reminded me of a baby Bird of Paradise when I first saw it. She too also hangs out with me in my office, making her and the Rattlesnake the only two separated from the jungle in the living room. I was worried the lack of intense light would prove troublesome but so far it hasn’t seemed to bother her (knock on wood!) I make sure to place her in the window sill on days I’m in my office and see the most light coming through. Even if it’s only for a few hours, she seems to like it just as much as she likes sitting on my printer next to the Rattlesnake. We shall see what her true preference is with time.
Basil, Rosemary, & Mint
OMG these I can’t be more excited about! Thomas & I have been cooking constantly in our new home and the idea of growing our own herbs to cook with has always been a plan of mine someday. I think the first or second week after moving in I bit the bullet & ordered a starter pack of seeds from Urban Leaf (after much research, mind you – we’re gonna eat these someday!) I was told to place them in direct sunlight in starter pots with plenty of drainage and expect sprouts in 8-10 weeks if all went well. I was nervous our sunniest window wouldn’t be enough, especially considering the sun sets at like 4:30pm now, but to my delight we now have basil and rosemary sprouts! It’s only been close to 6 weeks too, which is way ahead of schedule. The mint seems to be taking its time, but this is the one that takes the longest to grow (according to the package instructions.) I’m feeling optimistic that we’ll be enjoying fresh basil, rosemary, & mint by the end of the spring or summer next year. Fingers crossed!
Where Did You Get Your Plants?
Most of our larger plants came from 14th Street Garden Center, which is probably the best nursery we’ve ever been to in the NYC/neighboring New Jersey Area. If you’re based nearby, I totally suggest taking an Uber & seeing it for yourself. All our plants from there are super healthy & thriving. Plus, you can shop pots/planters there as well & they’ll even pot them for you!
What Are Your Top Plant Care Products?
Other than watering them 2x a week & making sure each gets the proper amount of light they desire, we use a variety of products once & a while to help the plants out when they need an extra touch of TLC. I shared my favorite plant care products in this post if you want to check it out & included some of our favorite pot + planter purchases you can shop directly below:
Are All Your Plants Pet-Friendly?
I’m pretty certain 95% of our plants are deemed “pet safe.” Our cat Manny hasn’t gotten the urge to eat any of our plants with the exception of the Ponytail Palm, which I’ve caught him chewing on once & a while. So far he hasn’t had any reactions (knock on wood) but we also make sure not to use any chemicals on our plants that he could get exposed to & accidentally ingest. If we ever need to take care of our plants with chemicals (should they get mites or another condition on the leaves) then we’d make sure to separate the plant from Manny for a week to make sure all is ok. Of course, it’s important to research which plants are pet-friendly before you purchase, as there are many varieties that are poisonous and can severely hurt your pet should they ever be ingested. Two of our fave online plant sellers have a catalog of pet-friendly plants you can shop from – The Sill & Bloomscape.
Do You Know Of Any Plant FB Groups To Join?
YES! One of my good friends from college (thanks Missy!) introduced me to several active plant groups on Facebook & they’ve made my newsfeed so exciting! If you’re a huge plant lover, then these groups will totally inspire you. I’ve posted a few times sharing general pictures of my indoor garden, which get so much love & admiration; I’ve also posted a photo of our Bird of Paradise when I noticed spots on the leaves and asked if anyone knew what was going on – which resulted in helping me get to the root of the issue (lol get it.) Some groups also offer plants for sale, which all I can say is “buyer beware” to because holy moly it’s so tempting to buy them all. But overall, these groups are so inspiring, helpful, & supportive and I’ve learned to love checking out FB because of them.
Group sharing a mutual love of plants daily. Please note: it was recently Body Positivity Week so if you join now & accepted (you need to answer a few questions in order to join), you’ll see an influx of people posting photos with their plants embracing their bodies. Honestly, I found it super inspiring to see how many people have benefitted and persevered because of plants but if this is something that might be too much to see right now, then I suggest joining in a week or two once the posts go further down the chain.
Group dedicated to buying/selling plants, mostly rare & very unique! #BuyerBeware
Another group dedicated to buying/selling plants, but for $10 or less! Again, #BuyerBeware.