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If You Love Your Plant, Let It Go.

Yep. You heard me. Ok. I admit I’m being a little cheeky here. But seriously folks, plants are kind of like people, and they don’t want to be drowned in your love. Misguided plant lovers everywhere leave a trail of moldy rotten corpses in their wake, and unbeknownst to them, it’s kind of a product of too much love. Let that sink in.

Confession. I was a helicopter plant mom. As a beginner succulent owner, I was both scared and excited. My plant repertoire was expanding, and yet I was seriously clueless as to how to care for these guys and…sadly, a few cacti and succulents lost their lives to the cause. I am here today to tell you that this doesn’t have to happen to you, and best of all the answer is simple, do nothing. Ok, maybe not NOTHING, but you get the idea.

Contrary to the popular belief that plants need constant moisture, these guys in particular, actually need to dry out and will consequently rot otherwise. Having evolved in dry climates, these hearty little plants are actually designed to hang on to their own supply of water! That’s right… they’re kind of like intelligent little water balloons and therefore don’t need much of our “help”. We all know from our past what happens to over-filled water balloons, and trust me, this is not the fate you want for your little green friend.

Signs you are over-loving your plant: yellowing mushy leaves,-lighter in color than the rest of the plant, leaves that fall off easily when touched, any sign of mold. The most susceptible parts of the plant are under the soil, tiny little roots suffocate if left in standing water. Pro Tip: if your container does not have a drain hole, make sure to do your best to pour off any excess water that pools at the bottom of the container. If you see any of these signs and simultaneously feel any amount of moisture in your soil (scientifically proven moisture test procedure: stick your finger into the top soil about half an inch), then this is a sure sign you need to step away from the watering can. Just let that plant go dry before you pour your love onto it again! I promise you won’t regret it. It will “come back and be yours”, every time.

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Dina Deleon