I love plants! If I ever move, my biggest stress will be taking care of my green babies. I don’t have that many of them (8 at home + 2 at the office + a replaced-as-needed vase of green onions), but I would not complain about having more. They just need to be relatively easy to care for. If I have to do anything more exciting than weekly watering and the occasional shot of fertilizer, it’s not the plant for me. Which is why a lot of things I try to grow from seed disappear after a while – I get tired and bored of needy plants.
The plants that I have right now? Practically indestructible. Well. Most of them, anyway.
Two are actually the same plant, I just took some clippings and planted them after they grew a few roots. I thought they were philodendrons. I was wrong (thanks, mom!). Whatever it is, it’s a lovely and hearty vine. It even survived several weeks of being root-bound in the tiny milk pitcher, which I had to break to get the plant out.
The leaves are a beautiful green and the plants seems to be fine in all sorts of different light. I have a small one on the dark side of my office, where I sit, and one currently residing on my kitchen counter (it was in my bedroom, but I block the windows in the summer as it gets too hot in there – I thought it might like a bit more sun and now I kind of like it where it is).
On a bit of a side note, I’ve had this random vine since 2010. It’s one of the few plants that survived the cold winters in my previous and horribly drafty apartment.
Another plant that survived that frozen dungeon is one of my “misc. tropical” plants. It’s a spiky looking thing that I bought at Ikea. It used to have several “artistically” bend branches and was living in a giant pot (the picture below shows my first re-potting, when it was still wee). It took up way too much space, so I hacked off a branch with two limbs and gave away the rest. I honestly didn’t think the cut branch would survive, but it’s doing really well, growing, and looking very healthy.
I have another random tropical that’s very similar, but has slightly different leaves. It was in my old boss’ office, but she gave it to me when she retired. I found it was a bit sensitive to the cold, so I had to move it from it’s original home next to a window that I open at all times of the year. Now it lives in the relatively safe spot next to my desk.
One pot has two kalanchoes that were rescued from a co-worker’s Christmas plant basket that was left un-watered for a few weeks. No one thought they would survive, but I coaxed them back from the near-dead and have had to clip them back twice and re-pot them a few times. I even got rid of two of the original four. In fact, the two that I have are from clippings, so I guess I technically got rid of all four of them. They now sit in a sunny window at the office.
I also acquired a what I think is a golden pathos vine from work, but it was given to me. Someone had abandoned it and I adopted. I did get rid of about half of the vines and trimmed what I kept to be quite short. For a long time, the pieces I kept lived in a bowl on the microwave, but I eventually potted it and now it’s absolutely magnificent. It’s also getting pretty, so I put it on my growing pile of Uppercase magazines.
Speaking of plants from the office, we have minor jungles in some of the offices on my floor. I might, possibly have liberated one or two tiny clippings. The first was two short clippings from what I believe to be a Hoya. I had it in water for nearly a year before I realized that it wasn’t interested in growing much by way of roots. I took a chance and planted it in dirt. It did nothing. And, more nothing. And, even more .. wait, is that new growth?! Holy leaf, batman! It finally started to grow and now it’s going nuts. One of the two is almost a meter long and keeps trying to get friendly with the candles next to it.
I also have two spider plant clippings. I love spider plants! Right now they’re living in a vase next to my sink, but I’ll pot them. Eventually.
Another plant I sort of stole is my rubber plant. I clipped a piece off the rubber plant that used to live in my apartment building’s lobby. It was another plant that didn’t do much for a long, long time. But, it eventually grew a few roots and I planted in a tiny pot. It’s now not quite a meter tall and growing at a steady pace.
One of my favourite new acquisitions is a Christmas cactus. It didn’t really do anything for a long time, but then suddenly it grew some new leaves. And, and I’m getting a second set of new leaves now. It’s pretty exciting! I love new growth. Anyway, the plant lives on top of my fridge, which is a nice warm spot that gets just enough indirect light to keep the plant happy.
And, lastly, there’s my green onions. I don’t know if they really count as houseplants, but I keep replacing them even though I don’t use them that often. My current batch is from the farmer’s market (from Reclaim Urban Farm, home of my favourite mesclun mix). The ones that are left are twice as tall as they were when I first got them almost a month ago. And, a couple of them flowered, which was really nice.
I feel like I should mention the avocado seeds I’m trying to grow. I just started two new seeds two weeks ago after realizing that the first (which had shown a great deal of promise by growing a 1-inch root and starting some greenery) had decided to die. I really hope I can get one to grow soon because having to top-up the water every day is getting annoying.
And, that, my friends, is my current collection of plants.
I want more. For example, I really want to replace the snake plant that died while I was on vacation a few years ago. It would be great for my bedroom or tucked in next to my sofa. I’d also really love to buy one of the terrariums from Axis Mundi Artistry, but they mostly do succulents, which I can’t be trusted with (they die!). I know they do the occasional tropical plant terrarium, so one of these days I’m going to order one (or, maybe they’ll have one at the market). And, I keep browsing my houseplants Pinterest board which has some great ideas. I think another big tropical would be nice, as I have a mostly empty corner in my living room (and giant plants are awesome!). Maybe a Mass Cane or some sort of palm.