Sometimes Plants Die
One thing that has always kind of bothered me about plant blogs, particularly houseplant blogs, is that people rarely mention their failures. I feel like this sets people up to have absurdly high expectations. If all these bloggers can keep 400 houseplants alive why can’t I, right? I know I’m guilty of it just as much as anyone else. The truth is, I have killed a lot of plants. I’m pretty sure ALL plant bloggers have killed a plant or two (dozen).
I’m pretty sure plant people actually kill far more plants than “normal” people, but that is probably just due to the vast quantities of plants purchased on a whim without any knowledge of care (such as the poor Brighamia above). If you buy a million new plants every year, more than a few are going to end up compost, it’s unavoidable.
I know it’s not the ideal outcome but it still makes me sad to hear people say “I don’t do houseplants, I can’t keep them alive”. Just because you killed one or two plants one time doesn’t mean you can’t grow houseplants, it just means you probably didn’t get the right plant for you. There are plenty of plants that are easy in one situation and impossible in others. I’m sure my Brighamia would have been just fine if I didn’t stupidly put it in front of a drafty window (they’re native to Hawaii and detest anything to do with cold…what WAS I thinking putting it there?). So PLEASE don’t give up on plants. Once you find a few that will thrive for you they really can be a fun and rewarding hobby. Yes, you will kill a few plants, you might already have killed a few plants, but that shouldn’t discourage you from trying.
In other news, this plant has already been replaced by this lovely dracaena. I’ve never actually grown D. surculosa before but I can’t imagine it’ll be too difficult. I normally wouldn’t be excited by D. surculosa but I liked how the spotting was concentrated mostly along the midrib instead of randomly all over the place so I figured I’d give it a shot.