For those who have yet to cultivate a green thumb, now’s your chance. With so much time spent indoors, it’s important to bring touches of nature inside. That is why we’ve included these top five starter plants to kickstart your newest hobby.
Perfect for your practical and aesthetic purposes, plants also have significant health benefits. Known for improving concentration and productivity, reducing stress, and even boosting one’s mood, adding touches of green can bring a positive change in your everyday life. Real plants can sharpen your attention and even be a therapeutic outlet. Whether it’s inside or out, add a plant to every room and reap the benefits.
Some key words to know when it comes to first time planting:
Perennial. Plants that are expected to live longer than three years, perennials can die back to the ground. However, they’ll continue to grow when the conditions are right given their root systems are still very much alive.
Annual. These plants complete their life cycle in one growing season.
1. Herbs. Stand out with your next home-cooked meal by adding fresh herbs. Some of the easiest plants to grow, herbs can offer instant gratification from the moment you see those little snippets. Most herbs are low-maintenance and can last for years, meaning you only need to plant some of them once. They enjoy plenty of sun, good amounts of water, and to be kept out of harsh winds. If you’re short on space, herbs can be compacted easily and will be undeterred by their small living conditions. They’ll grow just fine, though perhaps a little smaller than some that have more room to stretch. There’s never a better time to experiment with herbs given their flexibility, low level of commitment, and small-spaced nature.
2. Succulents. Plants with fleshy, thickened leaves and swollen stems that store water, or succulents, are able to survive in harsh climates. They don’t mind a little neglect, which is why they also happen to be one of the best plants to keep indoors (they thrive in warm, dry climates). These plants also have plenty of variations, making for a funky addition to an everyday space.
There are some steps to ensure its successful growth:
First, make sure to choose an appropriate succulent for your indoor conditions. Most like direct sunlight.
Next, choose your container wisely, if potting yourself, and always have one that has a drainage hole.
Lastly, watch out for overwatering. Remember, these plants thrive with a little neglect, so be sure to allow the potting mix to dry out between care. Otherwise the plant may eventually die.
3. Greens. It’s easier than you think to grow food for your table, starting with leafy greens. Greens of all kinds – kale, spinach, collards – increase the diversity in your garden and may be picked in as little as 30 days from planting. They thrive in cool weather, so plant them in early spring, if possible (or, late summer). Greens usually do best if you plant them in full sunshine and soil that is consistently moist. You’ll know it’s time to pull them up when they bolt or send up their flower stalks. The flavor tends to fade away the longer you wait, so be sure to snatch those up when the time comes.
4. Sunflowers. Add some sunshine to your garden with these vivid flowers. Named for their attraction to the sun, these flowers grow best in spots that get six to eight hours of direct sun per day. Growing this plant is typically easy because regardless of soil conditions, as long as they have some sun, they tend to grow excellently. They’re also heat tolerant, pest resistant, and fast growers. Whether you leave them on the stalk for a magnificent outdoor display or harvest them for your indoor area, these flowers come in more than 70 different varieties and can grow up to ten feet in height. The time you plant them to its bloom could range anywhere from 80 to 120 days, so it’s best to plant these seeds between May and March.
5. Snapdragon. Known for their shape and its resemblance to the snout of a dragon, these plants are very popular and usually grown as annuals. These flowers bloom profusely throughout cooler months and can be a wonderful addition to any garden given their intensely saturated blooms. Since these flowers tend to bloom from the bottom of the stalk working their way up, they have a longer period of bloom life. Snapdragons can also come in many sizes, from a few inches to four feet in length, and take two to three months to grow completely. With its versatility, this flower can find its place in any garden.