A Broke Girl’s Guide To Plants

I know that everyone thinks that they have a black thumb and believe me, I thought so too. I am so glad I got over that because I love my plants so much and it is so rewarding to see them grow.

This guide is for anyone who wants to get into plants but doesn’t know how to start.

First, do your research. Plants offer a ton of benefits to your space but some may be easier to take care than others. Most of the plants that I am going to talk about are tolerable to a lot but still research, research, research. Before you buy your plant, think about where it will live. Will it live indoors or outdoors? Does your window capture bright light most of the day or is it indirect? How’s the humidity and temperature of your space?  Plant parenting is trial and error. Your plant will tell you if it’s doing well or not.

Picking your plant

I’ve narrowed down great plants to start off with. The ones that are bolded I’ve personally have/had. These plants will tolerate different environments but still, look up which one would do BEST in your space. These plants are low maintenance and don’t require too much attention or water.  

  • ZZ Plant

  • Succulents

  • Pothos

  • Philodendron

  • English Ivy

  • Snake Plant

  • Spider Plant

  • Birds nest fern

Before you buy your plant

Once you’ve gone through and researched a few plants that you like now you have to purchase it. I always recommend shopping local instead of the big box stores.

Some of my favorite Charlotte-based plant retailers are:

I’ve never purchased any plant from online but I know people that did and they seemed to like it. It’s just based on what is available to you.

Online retailers:

You want your plant to be healthy before you buy it. Just check to see if you see anything weird if not, you’re good to grow. Look for:

  1. Healthy roots/leaves

  2. Bugs/mold

  3. If your plant flowers: signs of buds growing

  4. Brown leaves

Bringing your plant home

Do not repot your plant right away, give it some time to acclimate to its new home. Place it in the spot you picked out and give it a few weeks before you give it a new home.

Watering

Now…watering. I’ve killed a lot of plants because I overwatered. Most of the plants I mentioned above do not need a ton of water. Let your plant dry out between waterings then give it a good soak. You don’t need to be on a particular schedule but my tip is to water your plants in the morning when it’s cooler to give it a chance for water to absorb.

I bought two things that changed my life and helped me know what my plants need.

1. A moisture meter gives you an idea of how wet your soil is. I LOVE THIS THING. I go around and put the prong into my soil and it tells me whether or not I need to water. If your plant is doing good, WALK AWAY.

2. Self-watering plastic pots. Your plant will take what it wants and then not use the rest. For my English ivy, this was a game changer. I fill it up a little bit and let it chill out for a week.

To avoid overwatering make sure your plant has good drainage and water can flush out otherwise you will get root rot and that is not fun. Water wicking pots like terra cotta ones are also great to prevent overwatering since it absorbs a lot of it.

Fertilizer

Just like humans, your plants need food. Fertilizer feeds your plant and helps it grow. Whenever you water your plants you’re taking away some of the nutrients in the soil so your plant has nothing to feed on. Fertilizer helps mitigate your plants from starving.

Go with a liquid fertilizer because you can add it directly into the soil or into your watering.

Here are some I am loving right now

You don’t need to get this right away but it will help boost your plant’s life in the long run.

Plants are for everyone! You just need to find the plant that best fits your lifestyle and your space. Let me know if you guys loved this guide because I had so much fun doing research and sharing my knowledge.

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