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We all know that having plants and greenery in your dorm room livens everything up, but I’ve always struggled to keep plants alive. Last year, I froze a succulent and an air plant to death in about two months. I tried to blame it on winter in Maine, but some of my friends had no trouble at all keeping their plants alive. It may be against my better judgment, but I’ve decided to try again, this time with a little more guidance. With the help of some of my more green-thumbed friends, I picked out three plants: a hanging pothos, a succulent, and a mini aloe vera. All three plants thrive with indirect sunlight and when the soil dries completely between waterings.


Picture of the plants from my dorm room
Original photo by Sarah Gold

I strategically picked plants that need their soil to dry out between watering for when I inevitably forget about them. One plant care trick I learned, which may be obvious to everyone else, is to keep the plants in the plastic pots they came in and place the whole thing in a decorative pot. This not only allows the plant to adjust to its new home and not get shocked to death by a new pot, but also helps prevent root rot. Root rot occurs when the roots of your plant sit in water due to a lack of drainage in the pot. The double pot “method” allows your plant to have proper drainage while minimizing the mess because the decorative pot catches the drainage water. 

If the plant life isn’t for you, you can also try picking flowers from the arb and putting them in a cute empty bottle or vase. If you really can’t handle anything even semi-living, there is always the fake plant route that will still brighten up your room. I have only had my new plants for a week, but all the leaves are still green and intact, so fingers crossed for what the future holds.

Sarah Gold

Colby '23

Sarah Gold
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