Houseplants 101

I’ve got all my life to live.
I’ve got all my love to give.
And I’ll survive,
I will survive, hey, hey.
— Every Houseplant

If you take three steps into our apartment, you will quickly realize one of us has a thing for plants. This slight obsession started a few years ago and our collection has continued to grow.  So keep reading and you will discover a few of our favorite houseplants and care tips to make life a little easier on you:

Monsteria Looks department- 8 Ease of care- 7.8 Sunny spot- 7.5 These big boys who are pretty easy to manage. They love a good window spot and multiply like crazy. They are poisonous to people and animals, so make sure to place high or away from dogs, babies, and my 25 year old brother who ate a leaf to see what it would do to him. Hint- A call to Poison Control was placed and the operator asked how old the child was who ate the leaf.

Monsteria

Looks department- 8
Ease of care- 7.8
Sunny spot- 7.5
These big boys who are pretty easy to manage. They love a good window spot and multiply like crazy. They are poisonous to people and animals, so make sure to place high or away from dogs, babies, and my 25 year old brother who ate a leaf to see what it would do to him. Hint- A call to Poison Control was placed and the operator asked how old the child was who ate the leaf.

Mother-In-Laws Tongue (Snake plant) Looks department- 7.2 Ease of care- 9 Sunny spot- 4 Talk about laid back. If you start looking around the waiting room at doctor's offices, you will notice these Snake plants. They are very easy and basically live anywhere. The only thing they don't like is to be overwatered, so pace yourself.

Mother-In-Laws Tongue (Snake plant)

Looks department- 7.2
Ease of care- 9
Sunny spot- 4

Talk about laid back. If you start looking around the waiting room at doctor's offices, you will notice these Snake plants. They are very easy and basically live anywhere. The only thing they don't like is to be overwatered, so pace yourself.

Aloe Vera Looks department- 7 Ease of care- 6 Sunny spot-6 For some reason, these fellows are so tricky for me but I love the way they look. And remember that time as a child you burnt your arm on a cookie sheet? Well, I bet your mom clipped off a small piece of this plant and rubbed it on there! They are a win win!

Aloe Vera

Looks department- 7
Ease of care- 6
Sunny spot-6

For some reason, these fellows are so tricky for me but I love the way they look. And remember that time as a child you burnt your arm on a cookie sheet? Well, I bet your mom clipped off a small piece of this plant and rubbed it on there! They are a win win!

Fiddle Leaf Fig Looks department- Shawty is a ten Ease of care- 3 Sunny spot- 8 These are those trendy plants you see in hipster restaurants, Fixer Upper episodes, and probably every Mom blogger posts. Rumor has it Walmart and Lowes do occasionally carry these guys BUT worst case scenario, swing by your local garden nursery and ask for one! 

Fiddle Leaf Fig

Looks department- Shawty is a ten
Ease of care- 3
Sunny spot- 8

These are those trendy plants you see in hipster restaurants, Fixer Upper episodes, and probably every Mom blogger posts. Rumor has it Walmart and Lowes do occasionally carry these guys BUT worst case scenario, swing by your local garden nursery and ask for one! 

Devil's Ivy Looks department- 5 Ease of care- 7 Sunny spot- 5 If you need a nice, easy houseplant that trails, these are a very safe bet. You can place them on top of your cupboards, counters, and in hanging pots. I am basically attempting to kill on that I have had for 4 years and they do not go down easily. Trust me.

Devil's Ivy

Looks department
- 5
Ease of care- 7
Sunny spot- 5

If you need a nice, easy houseplant that trails, these are a very safe bet. You can place them on top of your cupboards, counters, and in hanging pots. I am basically attempting to kill on that I have had for 4 years and they do not go down easily. Trust me.

Fern Looks department- 9 Ease of care- 7 Sunny spot- 6 Yes, I know this isn't your typical houseplant but don't be afraid to think outside of the box! I love ferns but do not have a good outdoor space, so I brought one inside! 

Fern

Looks department- 9
Ease of care- 7
Sunny spot- 6

Yes, I know this isn't your typical houseplant but don't be afraid to think outside of the box! I love ferns but do not have a good outdoor space, so I brought one inside! 

A couple hints:

  • Name your plants. It helps you remember to take care of them.
  • For plants that don't need a lot of water (like a succulent), just pop an ice cube on top.
  • If your plant starts to turn yellow, gut reaction is too much water.
  • Try watering a little less and talking to it a little more. 

If you are struggling with getting started on your houseplant game, my favorite spot to head is Lowes. They usually have great selections and some funky plants. Just remember to read the tag correctly and pick one that goes best for where you image it being (aka low sun or high sun). Don't fall in love with a cactus and just plop it no where near a window...give that fellow a chance!

Good luck to you and your houseplant!

With Love,

The Lavenders

 

 

That Taco Salad Dressing

This post is all about TACO SALAD DRESSING...Wait, don't go so fast...

Growing up, I took for granted my mom's fantastic taco salad and the dressing that made it so tasty.  It wasn't until a year ago did I realize what a little gold mine I had been sitting on. All my friends were asking for the recipe and I was just hoarding it for myself.

So, the days of using whatever dressing you have laying around is over. The perfect dressing to go with the ever confusing taco salad:

Donna Jean's Taco Salad Recipe

Grab your blender and pop all of these ingredients in there:

1/4 cup sugar
1 cup oil (Canola)
1/3 cup vinegar
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon mustard
2 tablespoon mayonnaise

Now make me feel better. How many of you follow a recipe to the tee and how many of you just sprinkle a little bit of this and a little bit of that? I just learned that it drives Derek crazy that I do the latter. 

Ps. Our Taco Salad musts? Lettuce. Hamburger. Corn.  Peppers. Tomatoes. And any other veggie that is about to expire in the fridge. 

Enjoy friends. Enjoy. 

And You Thought Your Kids Were Picky

Fiddle Leaf Figs are all the rage. If you are a hipster, visit coffee shops, or have a Pinterest account, you have seen these plants. You probably googly eyed them and then rushed to the nearest nursery to get your hands on one of these beautiful giants. 

I will warn you, Fiddle Leaf's aren't for the faint of heart. They will run anywhere between $50-$100 and when you spend that much money on a plant, the last thing you want to do is kill it.

 So, here are 5 tips to care for the pickiest plant I've owned:

1. They like a warm, sunny spot. Place them there and then don't touch them.

2. When I said don't touch, I meant it. Derek's friend came over and was rubbing all over my little fiddle leaf and kept saying "Wow! Is this real??".  After a few minutes, I tried to politely steer him away because I didn't want to sound like a crazy plant lady. But sure enough, that weekend I lost 5 leaves. These plants aren't great if you have a hyper dog, a hyper child, or a hyper friend.

Ps. Along with minimal touching, they don't like the breeze. So try to avoid a spot in your house with open windows or ceiling fans.

3. Water trick. If you fiddle comes in a plastic bucket from the nursery, keep it in the bucket for at least 4-5 months before transplanting. When it needs watered, you will notice the soil around the edges of the pot pull away. Fill up your sink with water and place the fiddle in there overnight. This allows the plant to drink from the roots instead of you accidentally drowning it by pouring too much water on top.
Ps. This is a great way to water most of your plants.

4. Every few weeks, wipe the leaves down with coconut oil! These guys (and most house plants) can get very dusty which can hinder photosynthesis (yes Mr. Cassidy, I was listening in your 9th grade Biology class).  Get the dust outta there with a paper towel and a light coconut oil bath. 

5. Rotate the pot about once a week and take lots of pictures. A beautiful fiddle really is something to show off.