Who doesn't love a green, leafy houseplant? I recently took my love of houseplants to the next level by tattooing a sentimental Heart-Leaf Philodendron on my forearm. My husband's grade one teacher gave each of her students a single leaf cutting of their classroom plant and he (with my help) has kept it alive and thriving for 30 years!
New to Plant Parenthood?
According to research studies, having plants around you at work, school, home or in hospital settings has been shown to reduce anxiety and increase concentration and productivity. For folks looking to embark on plant parenthood, aka having a houseplant that you love and adore, I've curated this list for getting started including resources for folks whose thumbs are more black than green.
"In this beginner-friendly introduction to plant propagation, Halleck details the basic tools necessary, demystifies seed starting and saving, and shares easy-to-follow instructions for the most practical techniques for cutting, layering, dividing, and more."
"Indoor-plant experts and Instagrammers Erin Harding and Morgan Doane bring the subject to life alongside their beautiful photographs of happy plants in the home."
"Does just looking at plants cause them to wither and die? Peerless offers advice on keeping houseplants alive, even if you're horticulturally challenged."
A Work of Art
We recently renovated our house and in true minimalist logic, we decided to forgo artwork and only hang houseplants on our walls. I have a large array of different types of hanging plants but my favourite "living art" is the Pothos plants trailing down the walls of our main floor. Against the backdrop of white walls and black hardware, the mixture of different leaf colours adds a great pop of colour.
Feeling inspired to decorate your home with plants? The titles below are dedicated to interior design and stylish ways to incorporate plants into your home's decorating scheme.
The complete guide to 'greening' your space, with ideas and inspiration for adding plants to every room in your home, plus a directory of versatile, easy-to-care-for specimens."
"This book is a guide on how to turn your home into a jungle-like retreat with styling tips from design experts."
Avid Plant Folks
For folks with a bit of experience, and similar to my journey parenting a child, plant parenthood can get more complex as your plants age. Beyond just repotting or turning the pot away from the sun, sometimes houseplants need some TLC to truly thrive. My Monstera plant was well established and doing fine but when I finally trellised the overgrown mess she became healthy enough for the leaves to start splitting!
If you're feeling stuck about a plant that isn't thriving, there are now apps where you can take a photo of your plant and have an action plan designed for your plant's specific needs based on visual markers like yellow or brown discoloration, dropping leaves, etc.
For us established plant parents, I've highlighted a few obscure and wonderful books that I think you'll enjoy:
"This book isn't just a dry exploration of historical cultivation; the narrative explores the plants' places in social history, art, politics, fashion and culture, showcasing the most fascinating elements of each plant's story."
"Whether you are an aspiring plant parent or already care for a junglelike brood, plant-stagram influencer Alessia Resta (aka Apartment Botanist) has distilled everything you need to know to start and grow your collection in this plant-care bible."
"Drawing on groundbreaking scientific research, this book reveals the 50 most life-enhancing houseplants and shows how they can actively purify the air and improve your mental well-being through their colour, scent, habit, and nurturing needs."
Lastly, I'll just mention that cuttings of beloved houseplants make for thoughtful gifts, be it housewarmings or birthdays. We did a cutting of my husband's prized plant for my son's first birthday and it has grown roots and a personality as large as our toddler. I prefer to gift my plant cuttings in water as opposed to a pot and soil since they are simultaneously harder to kill and it gives the new plant parent freedom to pick the pot style that speaks to them.
"The stylish handbook shows you how to make the most of your favourite houseplants through simple, beginner-friendly propagation techniques."
Please comment below and tell me some of your favourite houseplant varieties!