9.20.2017

Plant Lady is the New Cat Lady?


If you follow my instagram (@killjoymills) at all, you already know that I have become a collector of leafy plants. I've always enjoyed plants of all kinds, thanks to both my mom's green thumb and Josh's love for all things green and sun loving, but never had the confidence to really "grow" until this past year. I borrowed my mom's book collection and added it to everything she imparted while I was growing up. It was an inevitable obsession, really. No one is surprised one bit.

I hesitated filling our tiny apartment with plants because I was afraid I'd just kill everything.
Yes, miss tree hugger here was worried about taking care of plants. 
I put it off for the same reasons I don't currently have the fur babies I also want so desperately. Because being responsible for ANYTHING living is a big thing and should be taken seriously.
(Coming from a mom of two little humans, 5 aquatic turtles, 1 dog and 2 lizards....)

Anyway, obviously this post and my instagram feed prove that I did cave. After living here over a year.

Josh actually started it for me. He got me what is still our biggest baby, Mr. Grumpy Leaves, Philodendron, for my 25th birthday.
He has a love-hate relationship with the light in our hallway, but really he's just getting too big for his britches. Literally. It doesn't help that his leaves are so big and wide that between Jax and Chet, he has to constantly grow new shoots. He's a tough guy though, he can hold his own. I was sure I was going to end up killing him, but he proved he's a fighter and I'm not the big bad plant killer I thought I was.

Thanks to that boost of confidence, I chose a hanging Spider Plant to be my first addition. Unintentionally nicknamed, Spidey (not my most clever moment, but it stuck anyway).
Since bringing him home and caring for him (an already hardy and easy to care for plant), he's gotten bigger and greener and is easily one of my favorites (of my plant babies, of course).

Next, I learned why my mom was always coming home with new plants anytime we went to a greenhouse or even Lowe's. We went in for light bulbs and I walked out with two new babies.
Meet Violet and Rex.
Violet is a fuzzy, velvety Purple Passion (Gynura aurantiaca) and she hangs out on my desk behind my makeup brushes. She has a super soft layer of purple fuzz on her leaves and her blooms are bright yellow (as you can see, she's got buds now and will probably bloom in the next few weeks) so there was no way I was NOT bringing her home with me.

Rex is pretty interesting too. I didn't have to give her a nickname because Rex IS her name. And it fits her perfectly. This feisty lady has tripled in size already and absolutely loves being outside showing off to all the other deck plants. What makes her unique is this waxy, wet looking top layer that covers her already beautifully painted looking leaves. She feels and looks fake. It's impossible to fully capture through a camera, though, but I tried. Bugs like her too, but she defends herself pretty well.

No green plant collection is complete, however, without a Snake Plant.
The toughest, slowest and most metal house plant in my life.
This badass was a must have that made me officially enthralled with green plants. I enjoy all flowers, plants and trees, obviously, but leafy, dark green plants with designs that look painted on are my forever favorite. I will never get tired of admiring their impeccable patterns and textures.
Snake plants in particular tickle my fancy. They grow super slow but are the easiest house plant because they prefer low light and only an occassional watering. They also benefit the air (duh, it's a plant) and are just wonderful to look at.

As a plant mommy, having a partner who not only shares your appreciation for Mother Earth's gifts, but chooses to add to your collection, is pretty much the best thing ever.
My biggest plant babies are also some of my favorite gifts I've ever received.
Mr. Yuccdrio is actually a trio of Yuccas trimmed to look like crazy exotic dinosaur trees and I love it to bits. He's outside for now because now that he's in his new pot, it takes two people to move him and I still need a pan for him to sit on so he can be inside. He's loved being out there, but Winter is coming.

These last two are my latest littles, other than my herb and fruit plants.
I haven't named this little guy yet, but doesn't he look handsome in his little purple pot? It really brings out his red veins. (I know, I'm becoming borderline creepy. Sorry.)
He's a Nephthytis. Maybe I'll dub him Nephy.

And my current pride and joy,
Baby Black Beauty.
My first (but certainly not last) Elephant Ear plant. She's going to get MASSIVE if I let her (more like, whether I like it or not), which I absolutely will. She's also the official start of my future Goth Garden, which I will build once we have a real yard and eventual greenhouse. Until then, she's my precious baby and I adore everything about her. She's perfect.

As I mentioned above, I do have a few other plants not shown here. Between the dude and I, we also have a couple basil plants, a little mini oregano, a fern awaiting a new basket, a pineapple plant I'm babying and a tiny little baby banana tree. We also have a couple succulents, of course, but I have left the caring of them up to Josh because I have a major problem over-watering them and I refuse to be responsible for their demise.
We do have a window sill perfectly set up for a few babies though.....

If you didn't already know, plants are super beneficial and important. They improve air quality, help heal and calm and are just wonderful to look at and be around.
I am far FAR from being an expert and am FOREVER learning, but one thing I know for sure is there is NOT SUCH THING AS A "GREEN THUMB."
You're not born a plant magician. You BECOME one by reading, learning and trying. Start with something sturdy and easy (like a snake plant, spider plant or even mum). Gradually add as you feel comfortable. Don't rush yourself, and don't overwhelm yourself. Plants require just a few things; Sun, water, and PATIENCE. 
But you CAN do it, trust me. You are not a plant killer. Just a plant beginner, like me.

So....got plants?

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