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Thursday, June 8, 2023

Life + Arts

Happiness is a green thumb

I had an orchid. I use the passive tense when I mention my orchid, because it has long since passed away. The problem with orchids is that some varieties require a lot of sun, and this asked too much of my first floor apartment.

I bought the orchid because I thought having something alive inside my apartment would bring me a little extra happiness. I didn’t realize that orchids are difficult to keep alive, and that by watching my orchid slowly succumb to sun underexposure, I would spiral into a green-thumb depression.

Since the death of my orchid, I have realized that it is important to be realistic when it comes to bringing plants into my home. Although the orchid, in its short life, lent an exotic flare to my apartment, I should have brought home something that would have stayed alive for longer than two weeks.

The most important thing to consider when adding extra greenery to your home is whether or not you have a green thumb. If you are like most college students, your thumb is black. But don’t beat yourself up about it. You can still add greenery to your apartment by choosing hardier plants.

When selecting an inside plant, look for something that requires minimal amounts of water and sunlight. You should gravitate toward cactuses, ferns and palms. These plants are much hardier and easier to take care of than most flowering plants. And the great thing about these plants is that you can find most of them inside grocery stores. If a plant can survive for a week next to the dairy section of a grocery store, you can rest assured that it will flourish inside your home.

People who have exceptionally black thumbs and cannot keep another living thing alive should go with artificial plants. A good place to search for realistic looking artificial plants is Ikea. If you have no luck there, try Homegoods or, surprisingly, Hobby Lobby. You may have to shovel out some extra cash for the more realistic plants, but it will be worth it — there are few things more depressing than watching the petals of an artificial peony start to fray.

Another good thing about artificial plants is that they tend to be alcohol resistant, a must for the average college student. No amount of spilled vodka will kill your rayon rhododendrons.

Bringing some extra greenery into your apartment, even if it is fake greenery, will help take the kick out of a stressful day. A potted amaryllis will always be the best post-midterm de-stressor.

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