Tuesday, February 5, 2013

A Little Bit Of Green

I would like to take a moment to have a collective [eh hem, collective means you all....] sigh, bidding farewell to January.


Awwwwhhh, that's better.  Good riddance.  I'm not a fan of the cold "Enero."  With the exception of a few family birthdays, January really doesn't have much going on, you know?  It's just the reality that joyous Christmas is over and you have a good 8-12 weeks of winter still ahead of ya.  

I'm always relieved to see February arrive, and I'm usually always a little desperate for some sort of gardening fix this time of year, so I usually use February as an excuse to liven up my current houseplants and purchase a few noobies ["new ones," in case the whole Pardon the Noob thing is still lost on some.....]

I recently visited a couple of my favorite nurseries and was pleasantly surprised to see that they use the winter months to stock up on interesting houseplants that beat the standard Lowe's variety.  Best of all, the staff are super nice and offer extremely helpful hints.  Thanks to a helpful store owner I just might be able to keep a succulent alive longer than a month (hint: use the right kind of soil mix (cactus blend) and water only about once a month).

Before sharing my newest additions, I wanted to give a public service announcement for the Lowe's clearance section.  I never leave Lowe's without doing a little perusing.  You never know what you'll find!  In addition to plants that honestly just need a little TLC, you can find the cheapest pots.  I love to spend money on new and interesting plants, but I do not like to spend money on the containers that hold them.  (I also never leave a TJ Maxx, Homegoods, or Marshals without taking a quick look at their gardening selection.  I've gotten some of my cheapest pots from there too)  Also, I didn't find any this time [AKA, no photos of what I'm about to describe in perfect clarity] but I find that the cheapest/prettiest pots are usually the ones with no drainage-- not at all ideal for containers.  But I've found that taking a drill to the bottom of those pots and adding a small tray to catch the water and dirt gives you a great planter for next to nothing.  

I found this gray container at Christmas time.  It was marked down to $5 from $19.95 because the extra large poinsettia is was holding was finally dying off.  Good size gray pot for $5, yes please.
This pot is holding two bromeliads from the clearance section
without their noteworthy colorful spikes.  We'll
see if I can coax some new growth, but in the meantime, I'll take the pretty greenery.  
I just realized that the pot seems really small, but trust me, the basket behind it is huge.

The bromeliads came in this neutral container---marked down from $19.95 in its glory.

Now that nice little $3 container is holding one of my newest finds.

 Variegated Philodendron--- something I'd never come across before--- so much color.

A few of my other new additions to add a little greenery to dreary February are below (Honestly, husband, if you are reading this, houseplants and planters are clearly my love language, so Valentine's Day should be a cinch).
This little guy is Pilea Aquamarine and has found a perfect home next to my sink.

 Baby Angel's Tears- vintage Bloom spoon from an Etsy shop a while
ago, but something similar sold here.

Don't worry, baby succulent, I'm going to do my best not to kill you.

Kalanchoe-- the store owner swears this beauty is easy and will re-bloom.  
We'll see......

I also spruced up all my existing houseplants with fresh soil and fertilizer.  I have a couple houseplants that have done so well for me in the past and grow consistently, but ever since we moved in November they've just seemed stunted and on the verge of dying off.  It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize a little fertilizer and fresh soil might just save the day.  That's right, folks, all your gardening questions answered here.  

This guy is already starting to perk back up

I've come to the end of this post and realized that I've just written an entire post about houseplants.....hmmmmm..... not sure what that says about my social life, but at least my February blues are cured.

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