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19.4.17

Making Succulent Life with Easy Indoor Plants

Succulent life!

Hey loves!

How is everyone? Long time no talk!! There have been a lot of happenings over the last few months that have been keeping me away from the blog but I'm fighting like crazy to get back at it so we can share how to Make Life!

I've been transitioning away from fake flowers and plants so I can slowly start bringing living plants and real flowers into my home. This is very important to me as I de-clutter my life and work to provide a healthier home overall. It's a great idea to have actual, living plants in your home as they not only look pretty but they also help exchange the stale air for oxygen. Some plants also help calm your senses slightly, as is the case with lavender, or they help with your breathing, like with eucalyptus.

I've also been into more soft colors in my apartment that are soothing to my eyes and my mood. There is just something calming about seeing some beautiful, living plants. These succulents that I got from Lowe's go right along with the cool and neutral tones that I'm trying to nail down in our home. No matter what base color you get, most succulents have that almost frosted look that makes them ideal in a neutral design plan.

I've always been scared to have succulents because I believed that they were exclusively outdoor plants and I am for the most part very uneducated about indoor plants. The more I look into it, however, the more I learn. It makes me discover all the new things that I can do to make our apartment into a home. I love it! Now let's get started:

Things you'll need:

Planter - Grey Concrete Planter from Target
Stones - White River Stones from Hobby Lobby
Succulents - Echeveria Fleur Blanc/ Echeveria Hybrid, Crassula Dubia, Pachyveria "Little Jewel"/Pachyveria Glauca, Painted Lady/ Echeveria Derenbergii from Lowes
Aloe Vera - Lowes
Miracle Gro Garden Soil - Lowes
 

Everyone needs some good pot...

As you work on this project, keep in mind that you don't need to follow my directions exactly! Make it your own with different pots, rocks and plants. I elected to go with the concrete pots that seem to be very popular lately. This was one from Target and it is roughly 8" in diameter and 3-4" deep. This is the perfect size to accent the bookshelf that we have near the patio door. Target has several different sizes and shapes available!

The important part!

Get yourself some plants! I decided to get a few varieties of succulents that were pleasing to the eye and I snuck in an Aloe Vera plant for some variety. Why succulents and not traditional flowers and greenery? Because they are easy! Succulents and cactus are very similar in that they don't utilize very much water at all and they are extremely hardy in unfriendly environments. That means that, even if you don't have a particularly green thumb, you can easily keep these plants alive. A well planted succulent can last up to a month or so without water. As far as sunlight, whenever you get the chance, try and get the resulting planter into the sun. There's no need to stress though. 

I also chose the Aloe for the obvious. They are pretty plants, also a succulent, and they are good for use for skin irritations like soothing sunburn. If you feel adventurous, you can also use your aloe plants in a very odd drink that is supposed to be good for your stomach.

Hey look, rock bottom is actually pretty!

When you plant vegetation that is typically suited to an arid environment, it needs to be in a very well draining soil. The reason being is that in, say, a desert, the sand lets the water run away quickly. So the roots of these succulents have adapted to suck as much water in and retain as much water as possible but they are not designed to hang around in constantly moist soil. These plants can get root rot and other diseases if they remain in wet soil for too long. To combat this, you have one or two different methods.

The first method is to mix your soil with sand. In a pot the size of mine, you could just throw a handful or two into the soil and mix it around to help your soil drain a bit better.

The second method, and the one I chose to do, is to line the bottom of the container with stones. The stones will hold up the soil and roots of the plants and give excess water a place to drain to. When you've lined the bottom of the container, pour in your soil.

No matter what method you try, try to get a container with a drain hole in the bottom or drill a couple of your own holes if you can. This will ensure that excess water gets away from the soil and roots and keep everything well drained.

Now you're going to fill the container about halfway or a little better with your potting soil of your choice. We didn't have any potting soil on hand so I just stole a few handfuls from my husband's garden before he starts getting his seedlings in the dirt. When you get the soil in, go ahead and separate the plants from their little plastic containers and organize them in the container. As a side note, it's a good idea to figure out how the plants are going to be situated while they are still in the containers. Less mess and easier to move everything around.

When you have your plants organized, go ahead and get your hands dirty and get some dirt placed between the plants until the dirt is just below the rim of the container and the root balls of the plants are covered. Place your favorite colored stones along the top of the soil and around the plans until you have a good layer covering everything brown.

It's like a mini desert in a container in your home!

And that's about all there is to it. Go ahead and drizzle a little bit of water over the stones and between the plants to help the plants get settled in. Try to avoid getting too much water on the leaves of the plants. This is to avoid having the succulents contract some diseases that can come from soaking the leaves. If you do get water on the leaves, don't worry, you didn't kill the plants, it's just better to try and avoid soaking the leaves when possible.

And that's all there is to it. I hope you enjoy your new pot of pretty in whatever ideal location in your home that you decide! Thank you very much!
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