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How To Successfully Start Your Journey As A Plant Parent At College

Houseplants come in thousands of shapes, colors and sizes and can add a unique touch to your living space. Taking care of a living thing can be daunting for college students, however, there are a multitude of easy-care, low-maintenance plants that look great and don’t require an immense amount of attention. Here are a few:

  • Jade plant: this succulent is adaptable, resilient and easy to care for. It thrives in partial to full sun and only requires a thorough watering once its soil is completely dry. They also look beautiful!

  • Air plant: air plants may look a little odd, but they are some of the easiest plants to care for! They don’t require soil and can be stuck anywhere. To water them, simply fill a bowl with water and submerge them once a week. 

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  • Marimo moss ball: These aquatic plants are so easy to care for – all you need to do is ensure that they are placed in a partially sunny spot and have fresh water to live in. Give them a swirl a few times a day so that they maintain their round shape!

  • Cactus: all varieties of cacti are very low-maintenance plants! As long as they are placed in a sunny spot and receive thorough monthly waterings, they will thrive. 

When looking to buy plants, be sure to support local nurseries in your area! They often have wide selections and caring, knowledgeable employees who can help you choose the best plants for your space. 

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Once you have chosen your plants, you should also invest in a few tools that will make your plant parent journey easier. Pick up a watering can, a small shovel and a bag of potting soil, in case you have to re-pot any of your plants. One of the most important things to keep plants healthy is planting them in a pot with drainage holes on the bottom. If you accidentally over-water your plant, and it has a drainage hole, it can regulate itself by releasing excess water. However, if it is unable to do so, the water will sit in the soil and eventually cause root rot, which can be a death sentence. As a college student, space can be tight in dorm rooms or off-campus apartments – consider purchasing hanging pots in order to mount your plants on the walls or hang them from the ceiling!

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While caring for plants, remember not to worry so much about them! Plants are living things, and that they may have some bad days or develop a yellow leaf – it’s not your fault, and the plant won’t die from one dead leaf. As long as you do your best to meet your plants’ needs, listen to them and are patient with their growth, you will have a happy and beautiful plant collection in no time!

Antonia is a sophomore at Hofstra University studying political science and global studies. She is passionate about social justice and human rights, and hopes to work in public interest law in the future.
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