Saturday, March 14, 2009

I love plants!

When I was young, I remember going over to my friend's house. We would wander through the woods to her aunt's house next door. Her aunt was really cool, with a greenhouse built onto her farmhouse and a bamboo forest in her side yard. We would go on chicken egg hunts or turn over the compost pile with hay rakes. We also loved to explore the pine forests around her house, and we frequently found, tucked under and into trees, little pointed 1920's style boots--the kind with the little fringe element over the toe. These were always sprouting succulents, and I think it's such a clever idea. When you live in a relatively humid place like Ohio, you don't have to worry about watering your outdoor plants so much, and you just need to tuck a little soil/sand mix and a few seeds or mini-plants in your shoes to begin.

Another idea that I've just loved has been from a certain Etsy user, Lady Farrah. Moss terrariums are really easy to make--you just need a glass container with a lid, sand, soil, and moss. Place a thin layer of sand in the bottom (to absorb excess moisture), then some soil, then your moss on top (you can salvage moss from most shady, moist places). Moss tends to grow on slanted ground, so you could make your terrarium straight across or angled downward for better drainage. Or, you could make little hills and landscapes like Made by Mavis has. Etsy sellers have gotten really creative, using rocks, branches, and other found objects. You need to be careful with that, though, because you don't want to introduce all sorts of outside creatures into your home. You can "quarantine" rocks, branches, etc. in a sealed container like a plastic bag for a few weeks to observe if anything undesirable happens (such as eggs hatching and whatnot). When you keep your moss in indirect sunlight, it will need minimal watering. I'm really excited to try this for myself.

Lastly, your spent coffee grounds are excellent for raising mushrooms--in particular, oyster mushrooms. I love this idea because it keeps coffee grounds out of landfills (food waste in landfills contributes to methane gas, a greenhouse gas) and puts them to good use. It also allows you to grow food in your home year-round. Some sources suggest that grounds from caf├ęs are more sanitary because they are more thoroughly steamed, but you can use grounds from your home.

You can pick up oyster mushroom seeds from many gardening places, and there are lots of stores online. You can use virtually any container for growing mushrooms, which makes me very happy--from tin cans to several-layered shopping bags (with holes cut in the sides for outward growth). You just need to keep the grounds very moist, and you will likely see growth after a few days.

Plants are great for your home because the air inside of your house is actually worse than the air outside. In our haste to seal off our homes in order to use air conditioning and the like, we are really kind of poisoning ourselves. Plants act as filters to keep our air friendly, and are great in bathrooms and other humid rooms because they absorb moisture and thereby deter mold growth. Plants also help to balance out the positive energy (in this case we're not talking about good versus bad energy, but just positive versus negative) that is created by electronics, making for a more relaxing home.

On a completely different note--I have been listening to MGMT a lot lately. I love their album "Oracular Spectacular." My favourite song currently is probably "Kids." I love its message because I'm trying to live a more moderate, happy life, and "Control yourself--take only from you need from it" are lyrics that I find kind of inspiring. You can listen to "Kids" right here. If you love it as much as I do, you should buy MGMT's album!

P.S. It seems as if the Etsy user I mentioned is out of town for the time being. You can browse through other moss terrariums here.

1 comment:

Cody said...

When you get back we should look for pretty bottles and make some terrariums, we could use some plants in our room. <3 ^_^