HOUSEPLANTS 101 - A GUIDE FROM A SELF-PROCLAIMED BLACK THUMB

If you've peeked at my Instagram or caught a glimpse into our home here in the past, you probably know that Scott and I love a good houseplant! It's funny, because I always considered myself to have a bit of a black thumb - growing up, my mom was always the gardener in our family and knew how to keep just about anything alive. I always felt like it was kind of her thing, so I mostly stood back, admired and occasionally overwatered her plants on chore day. Once I got a bit older and had a small space of my own to fill with succulents of all types, I learned that I was still a chronic overwater-er and knew how a to kill a desert plant quicker than anyone in the area (well, I assumed - that is).

Learning my lesson more times than I care to admit, I decided to swear off houseplants until I was a bit older (with the hope that my overwatering tendencies had subsided) and had a space that was more light-filled than the previous. Flash forward a few years down the road and here we are -- living in the home that we had always hoped for with the plants that I knew I always wanted - surviving and thriving how I had always thought they would! Ready to learn from this self-proclaimed black thumb? Here's what I've got -- 

Favorite Places To Buy Plants From - 

Looking around our home, I see plants that we picked up from all different places - major retailers, local nurseries, mom and pop shops -- we've shopped them all and I'm here to tell you that it's not about where you buy your plants from, it's about how well they've been cared for and how well you care for them once you bring them home. With that said, here's a few of my favorite places to buy plants from -

Major retailers:

- The Home Depot

- Ikea

Local gems: 

- Farmer's Markets (the Gilbert one always has great plants)

Arizona Cactus Sales

Camelback Flowershop 

Berridge Nursery 

- Dig It Urban Garden + Nursery

Most of our larger plants (fiddle leaf figs, monstera, snake plants, rubber tree, etc.) were purchased at The Home Depot or Ikea -- all for moderate prices and in need of a re-pot once taken home. Many of our smaller plants and succulents were purchased either at a local nursery, farmer's market or boutique flower shop. The pothos plant above was the very first plant that I bought after we purchased our home! It came from the local farmer's market and was just a wee tyke back then! Today, it's one of my favorite (and oldest) plants! 

Favorite + Easy To Care For Houseplants - 

With so many different types of houseplants, it's easy to get carried away (I know first hand, haha), but throughout the past year I feel like I've really honed in on the plants that are the easiest to care for (and those that aren't, but that's another story). While everyone's home + climate is a bit different, here are the plants that have really done well for us - 

- Monstera (ours has grown SO much since we first brought it home)

- Pathos (our farmer's market gem)

- Rubber Plant (pretty + low maintenance, just be careful not to shock it with hot temps - whoops)

- Fiddle Fig Leaf (this one may be up for debate, but ours is thriving)

- Elephant Bush (great for indoor + outdoors)

- ZZ Plant (grows like wildfire!)

Care + Watering Routine - 

Each plant varies in how much sunlight + water they need, but I've done my best to place each plant in our home in space where they receive either direct or indirect sunlight (and for the random few that don't - I move them around throughout the week). In terms of watering, I'm down to watering one day a week (Sunday), and try not to overwater the succulents - while also making sure the fiddle fig and monstera get just enough water for the week. A good rule of thumb is if the leaves of the plant start to turn yellow, then you're watering too much - and on the other hand, if the leaves are turning brown - then you're not giving it enough water. Oh, and don't forget to feed your plants! We buy plant food from Dig It locally, but you can find that stuff just about anywhere! 

Favorite Ways To Display Houseplants - 

Picking your plants new home is half the fun of bringing home your leafy friend! I'm all for unique planters, like the West Elm cat piece above - but I'm also all about a traditional terra cotta pot (there's nothing more classic than that!). I've been known to collect pots and planters when we go out of town or when I find them on super sale! Depending on the type and size of the plant, I love to mix and match pots and saucers, with the occasional macramΓ© hanger thrown in for good measure. Here's a list of my my favorites shops to buy pots + planters from -

- Woven By Ro

- Crate and Barrel

- Ikea

- West Elm

- Shop Pigment

- Vintage! 

And there you have it - a houseplants guide from a self-proclaimed black thumb! I'm by no means an expert, but have a feeling that you might be able to learn a thing or two from my successes and failures in houseplant care! Now, it's your turn to share -- I would love to hear your tips + ticks for plant care, funny stories and even your failures -- because ya know, we're all just trying to keep those fickle plant babies alive, haha! Be back soon, friends! 

-Chelsea xo