budding orchid

Are you tending to your plants?

This is what happens after a week away! Once orchids begin to bud, their rapid growth is visible each day. I love watching their transformation! Below is before and after. Above is one week after getting home.

Flowering Orchids  Flowering Orchids

While watering my house plants in prep for leaving town, I reflected on how tending to my plants was once an overwhelming chore and how now I enjoy it. It took awhile to get the flow and knowledge with how to take care of them in a good way. Once I got there it made all the difference.

Because of my Feng Shui work, I have the honor of visiting my clients homes and the pleasure of seeing their houseplants.

I often get a sense of the different kinds of relationships people have with their plants. Some people have strong bonds with them. Others love having plants but don’t know how to take care of them and they end up neglected.

Sometimes people feel insecure about how to take care of them and claim they don’t have green thumbs. Others love plants so much that the plants end up taking over their house. This makes it hard to keep track of caring for them and it doesn’t leave room for much else.

I have a client with a green thumb and he loves to take care of his plants.

He’s passionate about soil science and knows the right nutrition the soil needs to nourish them. He said something that struck me. Although I don’t remember his exact wording, it was something to the effect of how plants need to be fed just like we do. That simple truth is key to remember. Plants are living beings. When we acknowledge and honor this it makes caring for them much easier and more intuitive.

My initial overwhelm with caring for my plants was because I assumed it was more complicated than I thought I was capable of. I let me own insecurities get in the way of creating a relationship of reciprocation with them. Remembering that they are alive was a huge help and then I realized it was quite simple to do. Now I enjoy feeding and watering my plants and watching them grow and flourish. When a plant needs nourishment and then you feed it, it’s a wonderful feeling to watch the transformation to health, vitality and beauty!

If you’re thinking, “I don’t have time to feed my plants or the time to figure out how to do it well”. Or if you’re still thinking, “I don’t have a green thumb”, here are a few simple tips to help you get started.

Tips for tending to your plants

1) Visit one of your local nurseries and ask for their advice.

The people who work at nurseries tend to be plant people and they love to help others take care of their plants! Ask them what food they recommend for the plants you have and how often to feed them. Taking the time to ask for advice builds relationship and because of that connection you’ll be more likely to follow through. Trust me, it’s not complicated and you may find you enjoy it!

For those of you who are local, here are some great nurseries in the Santa Cruz area:

2) Take an honest look at all your house plants.

Sometimes people have way too many to keep track of. You may need to cut back to a few favorites to get into a good flow of taking care of them well. If you don’t have any to begin with, start with only a few until you get hang of tending to them before introducing more. Remember, too much of anything can block the flow of chi in your house, inhibiting positive chi flow in your life.

3) Choose plants you love, not ones that are trendy!

If you pay attention, you may find that certain plants call out to you. You may find you’re more attracted to some over others, choose those. You’ll be more likely to care for plants that you feel a connection with.

I’ll add to this that in Feng Shui we recommend staying away from plants that are pointy and sharp. A sharp cactus would be the extreme but there are many other ‘pointy and sharp’ plants. The cutting energy or ‘chi’ pokes and stabs at your energy field.

They aren’t very welcoming. Unfortunately there are many popular plants that are very sharp and pointy! I don’t recommend them.

You can do a little test for yourself. Find a plant with rounded soft leaves and put it next to a plant that has sharp or pointed leaves. Close your eyes and take some deep breaths. Tune in and notice the difference, how does it feel in your body? Open your eyes and feel the energy around them by observing them. Experiment by holding your hands around their energy field to see if you can feel the difference.

If some of your best plant friends have this kind of ‘cutting chi’ and you don’t want to give them up, try this. Group them with softer friendly plants to soften their sharp affect. These plants are the biggest concern close to where you sit, walk by or by the front door or entrance.

If using live plants doesn’t suit your lifestyle, good quality fake plants can also be used for Feng Shui. They can bring a feeling of vitality to the space. The key is using a good quality fake plant, something that looks real. There’s nothing worse than a fake plant that looks fake and is dusty!

Why bother having house plants in the first place?

  1. They bring vitality to your home
  2. Some plants clean the air
  3. They make excellent Feng Shui cures. We use them as remedies to correct imbalances in the chi and also as Feng Shui enhancements.
  4. Plants and cut flowers reduce stress and make us happy!
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