Nature has been long known to have its relaxing qualities. This is why we seek the shelter of forests, mountains, and the oceans for tranquility and peace. But with the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us are wondering how to enjoy the great outdoors without leaving home.
My Pope Philippines recommends gardening. It is one activity that allows you to enjoy nature while staying safe at home. Growing outdoor or indoor plants also boosts your overall well-being as it is proven to reduce stress which is, quite frankly, a need for many of us. (Read: 4 Easy Ways to Find Peace in Solitude)
Want to start your own garden? Here are five tips to becoming a certified #plantita or #plantito this quarantine!
1. Start small.
If you’re new to planting, you might want to start with something low maintenance. Sure, you’d want your own orchid garden, but orchids are finicky and will most likely die once you forget about it (which you won’t, of course!). Low-maintenance indoor plants like succulents and cactuses are the safest ones you could purchase while you figure out your way to gardening. They will likely stay alive even if you didn’t water them for days. Remember that the most important part of gardening is to keep things alive! (Read: Grow your own garden with these free seeds from the Department of Agriculture)
2. Give your plants the basics.
Again on keeping things alive, make sure that you can guide your plants and provide their basic needs: water, light, and temperature. Before buying anything, research first if the environment is suitable for a plant to grow. (Watch: The Beginner’s Guide to Organic Gardening) For example, sunflowers are not ideal indoors as they need lots of sunlight to bloom, so if you don’t have a place that has access to enough sun, then forego the sunflowers for the meantime. Meeting your plants’ basic needs is key to them surviving.
3. Remind yourself to take care of your plants.
Of course, you won’t be forgetting to water your plants—wrong! Remember that you’re just starting to build your own plant emporium and habits take time to build. So take advantage of technology to guide yourself with gardening. Set an alarm for when you need to water them or when to move them to a sunnier place. It’s not being extra, it’s just being cautious and mindful that you need to take care of something. Responsibility is key. Just like how you would take care of yourself. (Read: Five Easy Ways for Moms to Recharge and Relax)
4. Don’t be scared to expand your horizon.
Remember the saying “bloom where you are planted”? That applies to having your own plants. If you simply want to grow cacti and succulents, then no one is stopping you. Outdoor gardening isn’t for everyone, much like not all plant moms and plant dads can follow a guide on how to grow indoor plants. Find your niche. However, do not be afraid to try out new things. (Read: How to grow a garden just like the one in Pope Francis’ summer home) You can start a different kind of plant once you’re really confident about it. If you want to grow lavender, then go for it.
5. Have fun.
To be a certified #plantita or #plantito, you have to have fun while doing it. If gardening is a chore and you’re not enjoying being messy or handling dirt, then it’s not for you. Not everyone is meant for planting or gardening, anyway. And that’ totally fine. However, remember that there’s no harm in trying. This way, you can figure out what you like and don’t like and to what extent are you willing to learn or try when it comes to outdoor or indoor plants. (Read: Young Farmers Successfully Build ‘Hydroponic Gardens’ in Quezon City)