5 Things All Plant-Lovers Need In Their Lives ASAP

*Thanks to Yonder Studios for gifting me the shirt featured in this post. All opinions are entirely my own. Also, this post includes affilia...

*Thanks to Yonder Studios for gifting me the shirt featured in this post. All opinions are entirely my own. Also, this post includes affiliate links which means I will earn a small commission if you click my link and make a purchase. This commission is earned at no cost to you.

It’s safe to say that in the past year, I’ve become plant obsessed. At this time last year, I had exactly zero plants, and I now have over 80. Has anyone else become totally plant-obsessed over the past year? 

I’ve certainly been collecting plants from everywhere I can. I received my first handful of plants from my parents for my birthday. A pothos (look at her now!), venus flytraps, dumb cane, succulents, and an aloe babe. And from there, the obsession really just took off. I order many plants online but find the shipping can often be pricier than the plant itself. 

Some of my favorite online plant shops:

Leaf & Clay for succulents and cacti. Check out their monthly subscription or one of their plant packs if you're unsure where to start. I love the "Weirdo" pack and have ordered it a few times. I love that their plants come semi bare root, which means that they're always in perfect condition when they arrive. Just make sure to have planters ready-to-go so you can get them planted once they arrive.

Pigment is a favorite for basic houseplants. They also have a ton of cute planters. These plants come in plastic grow pots, so you can leave them in those and just stick them inside cute planters or vessels without needing to totally repot. I really like this site because it allows you to shop small in one place. It's a California shop that carries products from all types of local vendors and artisans, which is super cool. Since Pigment itself is a small business though, shipping some sometimes be pricey for the plants (though the plants themselves are typically very inexpensive), so just keep that in mind as you shop. And if you're local, you can stop by the actual shop for the Plant Lab, a place to build your own terrarium.

Lively Root offers a wide selection of plants and even bulbs for planting! My favorite thing about Lively Root is the shipping and packaging. Their plants are truly the best packaged of any plants I've ever ordered from anywhere. I'm always impressed by their packaging. Always. Another thing I really like is that you can choose from a variety of pots, or just go with the grow pot. I'm partial to the woven basket. I just think it's so cute. 

Etsy is great for finding rare plants. It's typically where I buy any of my carnivorous plants like venus flytraps or pitcher plants. But I've found it's the easiest place to find rare breeds, or variegated plants. Just be sure to read the reviews and be mindful of how many reviews there are. Two good reviews is not as good as 1,000 reviews that have a mixture of good and bad with most being positive. So just keep that in mind.

Surprisingly, Mercari has become one of my favorite destinations to buy plants. But I've found that it's much better to search by "bare root" than to search by "plant," which brings up all kind of results (which are weirdly a lot of Rae Dunn coffee mugs). I may occasionally search by the specific plant I may be looking for, but "bare root" has given me the most relevant results. I also save that search so I'll be notified about new listings.

There’s also a local nursery I love to shop. But I find some of the best, most inexpensive plants from home improvement stores (most 4-inchers are under $5) and the grocery store (I literally found a 12” monstera for under $15!). At this point, I have hundreds of dollars worth of living plants and probably at least a hundred dollars worth of dead ones. But it happens, I guess, and my thumb is definitely greener than it used to be. 

My favorite places to find pots and planters:

I love Potey for fun planters. This set in particular is a fan favorite (in fact, the plants I have in those planters are thriving!). There are often additional coupons for different styles, and usually the package comes with a coupon inside for a free planter or macrame hanger.

Another great place to find really cute, trendy planters is Target, of course. 

Obviously, Etsy is great not only for rare plants, but also some of the coolest planters that exist. I love these tiny pots and basically any pot based on the female form.

A great place for inexpensive planters is actually a craft or hobby store. I always buy my terracotta pots from Joann or Michael's. Plus, be sure to check out the candle making section. Candle vessels make incredible planters. Don't forget to clean out candle vessels you already have to repurpose those at planters too!

The majority of my planters or pots are thrifted. I scour yard sales, thrift stores, and other random places for bowls, mugs, or other vessels that I can grow my plants in. While you can always drill a hole into the bottom of these, I typically line the bottom with a few inches of rocks just so I don't accidentally break a vessel trying to drill a hole into it. 

Plant apps I love:

I use a few plant apps to make sure I'm taking the best care of my plant babes. PictureThis lets me identify plants. The app is free, but limited. There's a premium version that costs $29.99 annually. I just use the free version so I can identify plants. The premium version seems really nice though. In addition to identifying plants, you can diagnose plant problems through taking a picture, get watering and fertilizer conversations, and consult botanists for help. 

I also use Planta to keep record of my plants - again, I've stuck with the free version. You input the plant, the space it's in, how much lighting is in the space, and what kind of planter it lives in. Then the app reminds you to water based on the environment and plant species. It also prompts for progress updates. I really like that you can take pictures to see how your plants progress over time. It's basically a plant diary! Much like PictureThis, Planta's premium version has many more features. With premium, you can identify plants; receive schedules not only for watering but also for fertilizing, misting, repotting, and pruning; receive recommendations based on your plant's site environment and your skill level; get help from a botanist; receive care guides and articles; help with taking care of plants during winter; and even a really cool light meter that gives you a better idea of your site's lighting (instead of just guessing yourself). Planta's premium version is $7.99/month, $17.99 for 3 months, or $35.99 annually. 

So basically paying for premium for either app would eliminate the need for the other, but I need both since I use free. If I did choose one over the other though, it would be Planta. The interface is much nicer and incredibly user-friendly.

Things I use to keep my plant babes alive and to help them thrive:

I did a lot of searching trying to figure out what plant lights I would need, where to install them, and I got really overwhelmed with how many types of lights there were and how expensive some of them could be. I ended up going with these balanced spectrum lightbulbs. I just replaced a bulb in my ceiling fixture and I placed one in a small lamp closer to my plant shelf. It's particularly helpful on cloudy days where much sun doesn't shine through, and in spaces where there's not windows.  

Wooden skewer sticks help to check the water level, especially in those larger plants that it's harder to check with my finger. Just stick the skewer in the soil all the way to the bottom, let it sit for about 10 seconds, and pull it out. If the stick has absorbed some of the water/soil, it's wet. If it's just dry dirt or comes out clean, it's dry. It's kind of like checking the oil, or making sure a cake is baked through. There's also moisture meters that do the same kind of thing - but also check temperature and nutrients too. 

I also use gnat traps to make sure those little pests aren't hurting my plant babes. For the plants in bigger planters, I typically stick one of these guys into the pot. I notice that with the bigger pots, they stay wetter longer allowing gnats to breed, so by using sticky traps, it reduces the number of gnats I have flying around. But I also turn this light on at night that attracts and traps those wiley gnats that get out and about. 

Another way that I make sure my plants are getting the right amount of water, but not too much, is the self-watering pot. The pothos my parents got my for my birthday last summer camer in one, and I know that's one of the reasons why it's thriving. It's incredibly. So I bought some smaller 4-inch ones for some of my other plants and it's been really useful in helping them thrive. Just be sure to only use those for the types of plants that prefer moisture over dryness. 

And of course, plant apparel:

It’s cliche, but taking care of plants has really helped me to learn and take better care of myself. Many plants are NASA-certified air purifiers, and there’s just something about the greenery that’s added to a space due to plants. Watching them grow and thrive, especially when you’re able to bring them back from the edge of death, is so satisfying and fulfilling. I know I sound like a crazy plant lady, but hey, I guess I am.

I’m also a crazy cat lady and coffee fanatic. So when I came across this COFFEE + CATS + PLANTS tee, I about lost my mind. Yonder Studios has a whole plethora of cat, coffee, and plant merch - not to mention products related to naps, pizza, homebody-ism, and more. I’m honestly obsessed.

While it’s literally impossible to pick even just a handful of items from the shop, Yonder was kind enough to gift me this tee shirt with the accurate phrase “sorry I can’t. I have to water my plants.” I’ve been wearing it nonstop (except when I’ve gotten it dirty toting plants around the hardware store, and have to wash it immediately). The fabric is incredibly soft and comfy. It’s the Bella + Canvas brand, which you’ve likely worn before, and those are always my favorite graphic/printed tees because they always feel so good to wear. The material is the lightweight cotton that’s still opaque and not at all see-through. Seriously, the perfect tee brand. For this particular shirt, I also really love the silver gray color that’s almost white, but not quite. It makes me feel much better than wearing pure white (which I always immediately stain).

Honestly, I just want to buy all the things from the Yonder Studios shop. Check them out and with the code KAYLA15 you can get 15% off you purchase. Tell me what you buy, or what's on your wishlist from the shop.

As a plant-lover, what's something you've just got to have?

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