Do you have a small army of potted plants sitting on your windowsill?
Have you spent hours sifting through plant catalogues to find just the right shade-loving plants to line your stairwells? Or do you have an elaborate trellis system supporting vines that twine around each of your ceilings?
In other words, are you gliding through your abode like the lovely supervillain Poison Ivy, naming each of your plants as one of her most beloved little babies?
Then this isn’t just a simple case of “you might be a crazy plant lady.” You KNOW you’re a crazy plant lady and you likely have a t-shirt proudly declaring this fact. You probably also have your own memes.
No one really knows exactly where the crazy plant lady movement first started. The only thing that we are certain about is that Crazy Plant Lady is the new Crazy Cat Lady.
And here’s why you should consider jumping on the train to the plant happy funny farm.
They Are The Best Living Decor Ever
Plants come in so many vibrant colours that they literally wake up your eyes. They spark creativity and give a sense that a room is truly alive.
They are Good for Your Mental Health
Studies have shown that plants boost our well-being at work, and naturally, they can boost our well-being at home too.
They Love You Back by Cleaning Your Air
It is already well known that houseplants improve our indoor air by taking in the carbon dioxide that we breathe out and producing oxygen and clean water vapour as a byproduct. But there are two additional boons:
- They metabolize toxins and turn them into harmless byproducts.
- They can sequester toxic substances that can’t be metabolized, removing them from our air and holding them harmlessly in the plant’s tissues.
These studies also show that we need several different types of plants to accomplish this, “given that houseplants vary in the types of chemicals they are able to remove from the environment and the efficiency.”
So, considering all of the above benefits, apparently, the crazy plant ladies are onto something here!
If you haven’t jumped on the “indoor jungle” bandwagon yet, it’s the perfect time to start. From Aerogardens to indoor hydroponics, there’s never been so much support for going green.
And don’t worry if you have a “black thumb” so to speak. Practice makes perfect. We’ve all had our victims in our initial quest to nurture nature.
Here are four different categories of plants that you can try growing indoors depending on your available lighting and preference.
Common House Plants
These are some of the easiest plants to grow. They are listed below by light requirement. Most will do well with moist, but never overly damp feet, but make sure your soil is well-drained. For the vines, provide a bit of support around the windows to give the leaves a bit of a boost.
- Peace lily
- Snake plant
- Spider plant
- English ivy
- Corn plant (Very lush and pretty)
- Asparagus fern
Shade Loving or Partial Shade
- Parlor palm
- Chinese evergreen
- Cast-iron plant
- Arrowhead vine
Surprisingly–Edibles (Oh Yes You Can!)
Believe it or not, you can grow a lot of edible plants indoors. Some even grow in lower light. This gives you all of the benefits listed above, plus something yummy to snack on in your leisure time. There’s one more plus here. It’s as organic as you want it to be. Even if you don’t have space to start a garden outdoors, there’s no reason you can’t have a beautiful garden inside. Just be sure to select the more ornamental varieties.
Let’s face it, some edibles are prettier than others. Listed below are some of the most beautiful edibles you can grow indoors with a few instructions.
Kitchen herbs are some of the easiest edible plants to grow indoors. Not all are created equal, however. Some need full sun no matter what. Many others will grow in partial shade. Just be sure to keep them well pruned.
- Sage–Prune well. It gets big.
- Rosemary–Looks best in mixed plant pots.
- Basil–This is a tender plant. Don’t overwater and drain very well.
- Mint--Mint is practically a weed. It will grow just about anywhere under any conditions. Hard to kill and beautiful.
- Chives–Mix with other plants for beauty.
- Thyme–It’s a slow grower in shade.
- Lemon balm–Grows slowly. Strong flavour for teas.
- Cilantro–this isn’t a well-known secret apparently. everyone recommends cilantro be planted in full sun, but the plants get HUGE! Keep them in shade and continue to top them off and they grow slower and are more manageable.
- Salad greens–Salad greens are hard to grow outdoors in summer because they are bold and get bitter in the heat. Bring them into the A/C and they taste much better. Get red and green varieties for the most beauty.
- Green onions–Green onions grow inside so well, it’s almost ridiculous. They should be mixed in with salad greens for beauty.
- Cherry tomato vines--Cherry tomato vines can be pruned and supported just like a philodendron. Give it lots of light for more production.
- Ornamental peppers–There is an ornamental pepper plant called medusa. It is one of the coolest looking ornamental peppers.
- Malabar spinach–this isn’t true spinach. It’s a vine with edible leaves that are good both cooked and raw.
- Coffee plant–Believe it or not, you can actually grow coffee indoors. It’s one of the few trees that actually need shade. When it blooms–oh my it smells so good. Some call it jungle jasmine.
- Citrus–need 8 to 12 hours of sunlight a day with temperatures ideally between 50 and 85 degrees.
- Avocado–Avocado needs full sun to fruit, so you’ll need a bay window with southern exposure, just like with citrus. It will look gorgeous in partial shade as a house plant.
If you are not yet on the “Crazy Plant Lady” ride, it’s not too late! Try out some of the suggested plants above and you can start your collection this weekend.
It is also a great idea to do some research before heading out to buy some plants. Find out what is in season, what the plants require, and if you have the appropriate spots for them at home.
Enjoy and have fun!