Did the lockdown turn you into a plantito or a plantita? Let’s admit it, staying at home and hearing some sad news can be very stressful. Some of us travel to relax the mind, body and soul. But with the situation we are in, we still do not know when are we gonna wander again with ease.
Plants may be our way to keep us sane and tending them is our temporary escape from thinking about how the world is so uncertain nowadays. I have been a plantita even before the pandemic because that’s what I do for a living. Through time I learned that not all the time growing plants is a stress reliever, sometimes it can be a pain in the ass especially when you are just starting out. I was once a beginner and here are a few tips for you newbie plantita/o to make gardening more rewarding.
1. Before you buy, look around first
I was scrolling my twitter feed yesterday and found a number of tweets how price of plants skyrocketed! I was like…huWHAT??!!! And I saw this one plant that costs a whopping 3000 pesos and thought to myself: I just ignore that plant in the office! Do not get me wrong, I am not telling you to not buy any plants. If it makes you happy and you have the money, go, buy it. You do not only help the seller, you also help our economy in the process. I think the mark of a true Plantita/o is the one who does not just buy an expensive plant to flaunt it to his/her Amigo and Amigas. Plantitas and Plantitos should first look around their surrounding and they either ask their neighbours to have some cuttings or they just carefully get some from abandoned pots on the roadside. After all successfully growing the plant from scratch is more fun than having it in an instant.
2. Research first
You do not just start your journey as plantito/a journey by buying a fully grown cactus from a pro plantito/a. You first need to do your homework. What are the plants you are eyeing to grow. Do you have a space when the plants grow further? Or can you just prune them so that they won’t occupy too much space? Do you need to buy fertilizer? What kind of fertilizer? How much water does your plant need? What kind of container does your plant need? The success story of your plantito/a does not happen overnight. It is a product of hard their work. As a beginner, your first step should be to do some research about your plant followed by continuously learning from your mistakes and additional tips from the pros.
Not the Tomato, Lettuce and Cheese in your burgers but as cliché as this may sound, it is Tender Loving Care. You do not stop on your first search of “what plant to plant in my condo”. It is a series of searches. They need your attention. You need to be ready to give them time and effort. Some plants are not demanding but you still need to give them what they need like water, nutrients and some sunshine. Talk to them, some says it helps them grow better.
4. It is okay if your first did not end up well
If you are a beginner, do not always expect your plant to thrive well. Despite your effort sometimes they will just end up wilting. Do not lose hope. It does not mean that you cannot be a pro plantito/a. Growing plants can sometimes be frustrating. Be patient. Experiment. Learn from your mistakes. Remember, you are just beginning your journey. Try other plants or do other techniques. Do not let that single wilted plant discourage you from making a greener world. One day you will have your own collection of successfully grown plant and who knows you might have a mini forest in your place.
5. Do not get it if you are not ready to commit
Imagine waking up earlier than the usual to water your plant everyday. Did you like the thought? If yes, then go get that plant from the mobile plant shop. However, if you thought of doing the watering the next day because you won’t exchange the extra 30 minutes of sleep to tending your plant, then forget about jumping on the bandwagon. Just like in any other ventures, growing plants is a commitment. If you are really into growing plants, then you do not need the first four tips because you will do them anyway.