Pandemic creates more plant parents

They say once you open a bag of potato chips you cannot eat just one. The same may be true with houseplants. The pandemic has helped fuel a houseplant craze with more and more people becoming hardcore plant parents.

“It went from me having maybe three plants to me having closer to 50 within three months,” said Cape Coral plant mom, Kolby Riley.

“During the pandemic, I couldn’t really go out because it was really unsafe, so I just stayed home a lot. I started doing research on the plants I did have, on how to propagate them,” Riley said. What started as a pandemic project, grew into a mini jungle. “I call it my sanctuary,” Riley said.

She has a wide variety in almost every corner of her home. She quickly learned certain plants, like snake plants, are easier to take care of. “Those guys can live wherever on almost nothing. I don’t even have to really water this,” Riley said.

At Edison and Ford Estates, Horticulture Director, Debbie Hughes, also recommends snake plants to start. Others might take a little more work and knowledge.

“People seem to think they can grow herbs inside. It’s not easy to grow herbs indoors, herbs are meant to be outside,” Hughes said. “One of the easiest plants to grow is things like Philodendron. Calatheas are probably one of the more difficult plants in the plant world.” Hughes is excited about the growing interest in houseplants.

“People have gardened more now than ever before. This is the wave of the future now,” she said.

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