My obsession with houseplants is somewhat of a recent venture. I think in many ways, it’s a path we can all relate to. When I was younger (think High School) I couldn’t be bothered with a living plant. Instead the only plant in my dad’s home where I lived, was a faux tree in the living room corner that would gather an obscene amount of dust.
When I moved out into an apartment with a friend of mine, we both shared an equal disinterest in houseplants. And by the time I moved into a Brooklyn apartment with my boyfriend (now husband), I had adopted this idea that houseplants were beautiful but too difficult to take care of. I’m not sure what convinced me to start buying them, but in any case I ended up with a few succulents that I promptly killed within the first few months.
I then ended up with a ZZ plant and a pothos (the most care free plants ever)… and that’s when I realized I may not have a brown thumb after all.
After a year of keeping them alive I decided it was time to graduate to the big leagues and get a fiddle leaf fig tree. Because ya know, it was trendy and I kept seeing it all over Pinterest and Instagram. I of course did zero research prior to buying one and had no idea what I was in for.
I would have to say, caring for the fiddle leaf changed my entire outlook on plant care. Mostly because it is quite challenging to keep alive and SO expensive that I could not allow myself to let it die. Once I started to get into the habit of misting and wiping the leaves a few times a week, setting an alarm to water it every Sunday, and taking the time to rotate the plant towards the sunlight once a month; I officially felt like a houseplant queen.
Flash forward to today. Over the past year of being in my bright and airy apartment, I have filled the rooms with 17 different houseplants… and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.
The Benefits of Houseplants
During this time in quarantine, I have really grown to love just how therapeutic having a nature-filled home can be. Not only do many of the plants help filter and purify the air, but there are studies that show that house plants improve concentration and productivity (by up to 15%), reduce stress levels, and boost your mood.
Not only are they amazing for your mental health but they also are a beautiful way to decorate and bring some life into an otherwise plain room.
If you’re looking to start adding some houseplants to your home, I have a whole series on my Instagram Highlights with quick tips but I’d thought I’d further elaborate here.
Quick Plant Care Tips
I definitely don’t consider myself a plant expert, but I thought I’d share an idea of how I care for the plants I have and what each of them needs. Ultimately it comes down to two things: proper placement (near or away from the sun depending on the plant) and regular watering with room-temp water (once again, this depends on the type of plant).
Most plants come with a mini instruction guide but it’s always helpful to google the species to understand how to best care for it! THIS article is a good read as well!
Best For Low Light Homes:
If your apartment is lacking bright light, I would recommend getting a ZZ plant or Snake plant. Both are very low maintenance and require very little watering. As long as they’re in a room with some natural light they should be perfectly happy!
Easy Care Plants:
If your home has a good amount of natural light and the most you want to do with your plant is water it once a week, then vining plants like Pothos and Philodendron Heartleaf are a great place to start. They visibly look sad (wilted) when they need to be watered and can thrive in indirect light. Perfect for beginners!
Herbs and Succulents:
Two polar opposite plants that are actually a little difficult to take care of. On one hand, succulents don’t require a lot of water (once every 3 weeks) which can make caring for them seem sporadic. Herbs like basil on the other hand need almost daily watering and bright light. Both of these are great to put on windowsills but I would recommend setting a reminder on your phone to keep watering on a consistent schedule.
If You Want Jungle Vibes
If you’re ready to welcome a large showpiece houseplant into your life, there are several great options to choose from! A Fiddle Leaf Fig is beautiful, but definitely requires much more attention than a Bird of Paradise. Both are tropical plants that need to be on a regular watering schedule, with bright light (although the Bird of Paradise is okay with indirect light) and higher humidity. Misting and wiping the leaves is necessary and should be done a few times a week.
If you’re not quite ready for that level of care, I’d recommend going with a Monstera. These basically grow like weeds, love bright light and you can let their soil dry out in between watering.
A Few Plant Care Must-Haves
Thankfully most houseplants are pretty low maintenance and you won’t have to stock up on too many essential items. However, there are a few things that will make your life a bit easier and that I definitely recommend.
Swipe through to see and shop:
Where To Buy Quality Houseplants
You can find houseplants in a variety of larger stores like Home Depot, Walmart and even Amazon, but I typically prefer to support local small businesses. Mine have come from a mix of Bloomscape, The Sill and PlantShed, but if you’re looking for a more comprehensive list I def recommend giving THIS article a peep.
And there you have it friends! All the plant tips and tricks I can deliver at this moment. If you are in need of some major plant inspo on Instagram and want to consult the professionals, I definitely recommend following @WelcomeToTheJungleHome and @PlantKween on Instagram! They put my little collection to shame.
Lots of love!