My houseplants taught me a valuable lesson. What’s the key to being a successful houseplant-parent?
Is persistence the key to successfully raising houseplants? That sounds busy. Nobody has enough persistence in their tank after work, family, and other life passions to be using it on servicing houseplants.
Besides, if you lack persistence, and miss a watering cycle, most indoor plants can still survive if the conditions are right — temperature, sunlight, etc.
Maybe it’s preparation, then.
If you put the plant in good conditions from the start…
But even if you prepare improperly, with little to no organic material in your soil, or let’s say the plant gets 2 hours of sunlight too few than it really should because of where you placed it, it can still survive.
Well, what about expertise then?
Average preparation. Average persistence. But a vast and well-read knowledge of successful houseplanting practices? That has to be it, right?
No. Wrong. I know very little. I am self taught via Youtube and Pinterest, but my plants kick ass.
Here’s what you DO NOT need to have successful houseplants.
Ok, what the hell?
This stumped me for a good 10 minutes while I was rolling out my I.T. bands with a lacrosse ball.
Then it hit me.
It falls into the bend-but-don’t-break type of mindset. Not every task in your life needs to be a stress-filled to-do list item that requires 100% focus and attention.
Sure, I know, “how you do anything is how you do everything”, but what if the perfect way to handle houseplants was NOT to worry too much about them?
Some facets of our life have such resiliency, that all we have to do is be elastic. We can miss a watering. We can put the plant in too much shade. We can neglect it for longer than we should, but the plant will survive, so long as we don’t forget about it all together.
Some relationships are like this. Family ties are typically very strong. It’s ok if you don’t call your mom every week, she’ll understand. That said, don’t expect to ignore a friends calls for 3 years and still have the same relationship. Not everything is rigid, but almost everything does require a subtle commitment.
If we identify the areas of our life where “a little elasticity” can go a long way, we can immediately take all of those things off of our must-get-done-today lists. We all know how nice it is when we take things off that list.
Tend a few houseplants. Learn to be more elastic. Realize that your world is not going to crumble to the ground if you forget to water it one time.