(This post was written by Ziya Moonbeam, the editor of this blog!)
I will be the first to admit that when it comes to having a garden, I don’t really know what I’m doing. I mean, I’m not the only cat who likes to chew on any leaves I can and then blarf them up later, right? Sometimes I can get Mom to grow some cat grass for me, but not often enough! Most of the time I just like to pee in the window boxes, cause someone doesn’t clean my litter box out often enough.
But gardening is the number one way to attract faeries. Most fae are nature beings, which means they like all the greenery they can get. But if you’re one of those people whose idea of greenery is just bringing home a bouquet from the store or (heavens to Betsy!) using fake flowers… I hate to tell you, but you’re not doing it right! Here are some of the most common excuses I hear…
I don’t have a green thumb!
I find this laughable. I don’t have any thumbs. But I’ve been raising plants for close to four years now, and when I started, the plants would leap off of the windowsill. (No, of course I didn’t push them…) It was through actually having plants that I learned how to grow them and what not to do. One thing I don’t usually do is start plants from seeds. Seedlings need a whole lot of water to keep them happy. Two days of forgetting to water them because you’re busy laying in a sunbeam and they can dry out. Typically, I wait for Mom to go to Home Depot, and then the faeries pick out plants that they like. That’s how we’ve ended up with most of ours.
I have a dog and I’m worried he/she will eat my plants.
Ummm… hellooooo. I am a cat. I eat plants. All you need to know is what kind of plants are non-toxic to your animal friends. Or keep the plants somewhere out of reach! Dogs are dumb and can’t climb onto counters (unlike us smartypants cats!) or high shelves. But honestly, be careful what kinds of plants you get. There are a few plants that faeries like that can be toxic to kids or animals, so if you have someone in your household who likes to put things in their mouth, try to stay away from toxic plants. The ASPCA has a great list; you can find out whether practically any plant is toxic for animals or not.
My apartment doesn’t get enough light.
Well, I understand that problem well enough. We’re lucky that we live in a south-facing apartment with a wall of windows that gets sunbeams through it all day long! That’s probably why the plants are so happy here. Well, that and all the faeries that live in them. There’s a few things you can do to combat this:
- Grow succulents! These nifty little dudes are kind of like cacti. They don’t need much water or sunlight, and they actually like the low-humidity of winter (which can be a real plant-killer). We have some in a terrarium on the desk. Terrariums are really popular right now; you can probably find a great guide to putting one together with a quick Google search.
- Find some other plants that enjoy low light. There are some flowers like African violets or plants like ferns that thrive in indirect light. Just make sure that if you have animals, you check to be sure they’re non-toxic before you invest in them.
- You can find full-spectrum light at most hardware stores, and you can probably find a cheap lamp at Wal-Mart or Dollar General. While not ideal for plants, it does come much closer than incandescent bulbs. Just turn it on when you leave for work and turn it off when you get back. Unless you work at night. Obviously.
My house gets too cold during the winter to keep my plants alive.
It’s okay, this place gets freezing too. One thing Mom has done in the past is cover the plant with a plastic bag. This helps to keep it warm and moist (it’s the dry air that kills the plant, believe it or not!) all winter long. Just be sure to check that your plants aren’t molding, and don’t do this for things like African violets or succulents, which are really susceptible to rotting.
Do I really need to have plants?
It doesn’t have to be fancy, you don’t have to have an entire table full or room full of plants . . . just one is enough! You don’t even have to necessarily have plants . . . even just a fairy garden set up would be enough. This is kind of like a terrarium with cute figurines in dirt or rocks instead of a plant. Trust me, they love this kind of thing.
What is your favorite kind of plant to grow? Are you an experienced gardener or just a beginner?