Monthly Archives: September 2013

For the love of houseplants

As a little girl growing up in a family of six, my family ran a lot of errands.  There were always medical appointments to keep, sports practices to attend, and groceries to restock.  Large portions of Saturdays, especially, were spent in the car, hours upon hours of endless stops and starts.  It didn’t help that, to pass the time, I would read from my spot in the backseat until the inevitable motion sickness would force me to quit the book and turn my face toward the fresh air coming in through the window.  I could have stayed home, saving myself the irritation of these endless, boring hours doing laps around our suburban town, but then I would have missed the trip to the plant nursery.

I loved the nursery.  I loved the smell of the soil, the vibrant foliage, and the general feeling of growing things. I loved the walk down the aisles, gently running my fingers over the various textures of leaves and branches.  My favorites were the ferns.  I loved how the new growth unfurled as it matured.  I loved how, when grouped together, they created a lush, rainforest-like landscape.  And I loved (the reason I put up with these endless errands) getting to pick one out and take it home.

As happy as they made me, I’ll admit, I was never a very responsible gardener.  Those childhood plants suffered from inconsistent watering and general neglect.  But through the years, plants have always been something to be excited about.

I have inherited a sun room in my new home… a perfect place to resurrect my dormant green thumb.  Some evenings after work when I need a pick-me-up, I head to Solabee, a cute little boutique with an amazing, creatively staged selection of exotic-looking houseplants and planters.  Sunday mornings, I make my way to Portland Nursery, wending through the jungles of ferns, the shelves of succulents, and the displays of carnivorous plants.  The sun room is slowly getting crowded with my curated selection of ferns and seemingly random assortment of houseplants.  I love it.  I love inspecting each one, looking for signs of growth and general plant-happiness.  I turn them when I think they are getting too full on one side and fuss over them when they look a bit sad.  I like to think caring for them is good practice for next year’s garden dreams, but really, I just like plants.