It’s week 236 of lockdown and we don’t know about you, but as much as we’ve been powering on with this working-from-home-quarantine malarkey, we’re really starting to miss the outside world. Remember cold pints in a beer garden on a sunny day? Or grabbing a posh cheese and pickle baguette from Pret? Even breathing in other people’s recycled tube air is looking fairly appealing right now.
But with Miss Rona ruining all our lives, we wanted to chat about our new hobby. Yes, that’s right, it’s happened. We’ve become crazy plant ladies, and no one can stop us.
It started a few weeks ago and although we already had quite a few plants, lockdown has definitely got our green fingers pulsing. Every nook and cranny which could home a plant is doing so and the apartment is slowly becoming an urban jungle. We know that we’re not alone though, so we thought we would give the 411 on living your best plant life during lockdown.
WHERE CAN I BUY PLANTS?
Hunting for plants, especially if you don’t know what you’re looking for, can be tricky. But there are several places out there which are great for getting your hands on some greenery.
Disclaimer: the following are more London-focused so we’re sorry for anyone not in the capital.
Patch Plants is fantastic for filtering down exactly what you need – from the room your plant will live in to how much light it will get. Delivery for us was around 7-10 days and Patch offer amazing advice and informative videos to help keep your plants alive and kicking once they’ve been adopted.
London House Plants
We’ve also bought plants from London House Plants which we spotted on Instagram. Although the website isn’t as user-friendly and the information isn’t as detailed, they have a wide selection of plants at similar prices to Patch. The best part of London House Plants is the delivery time. For us in the big smoke, we received our plants in 2 days, which, for a couple who are pretty impatient, was incredible.
This is a local haunt for us. Walworth Gardens is a stone’s throw from our flat and, even if we’re not in the market for plants, we love popping in their on a lazy weekend for a wonder round. They’ve just reopened their online delivery service and are offering delivery for South London postcodes. They’re also currently offering 20% off indoor plants – winner!
The Nunhead Gardener
This is another South London offering and which again, used to be a local for us. The Nunhead Gardener have an amazing selection and also do gorgeous plant pots.
Urban Flower Co
We haven’t ordered from Urban Flower Co, but we were having a good old nose around the website and they had some lovely indoor plants. They’re North London based and are currently only delivering to N and NW postcodes so if you’re North of the river then these could be one to check out.
Bloom Box Club
Bloom Box Club is a plant subscription service (great pressy idea!), but they also sell indoor plants separately. They have a great range and we love how they recommend pet-friendly plants and even sell a ready-to-go pet-friendly bundle. They also sell gorgeous plant pots which you can order along with your plants, making life much easier.
Green Rooms Virtual Market
Failing all that, Green Rooms Market, which is usually a psychical market is now holding it virtually! There are heaps of cool independent sellers, selling everything from houseplants and seeds to pots, vases, macramé holders, terrariums, botanical prints, magazines and much more.
WHERE CAN I BUY PLANT POTS?
We’ve actually found searching for lovely-looking, correctly sized plant pots quite hard. Trying to figure out measurements ensuring that your pot won’t gobble up your plant is key. Our advice is to measure your plants potting container and note all the measurements down and have that list in front of you as you search. Also, always take into account the plant pot rim. The diameter might seem right but the thickness at the top can trick you! We kept falling into the trap of seeing lovely designs and then realising the sizes are incorrect. Also, think about proportions. Buying a slightly larger pot can sometimes give the illusion that the plant is bigger than it is. And if it’s a trailing plant then consider the pots design; you don’t want the leaves to hang down and cover the beautiful design of your pot.
We’ve found some great pots and planters on made.com, Habitat, H&M Home and M&S. Trouva and Etsy have some lovely unique designed pots too or, head to Green Rooms Virtual Market as we mentioned above for some independent sellers. We’ve just treated ourselves to a new plant pot from BAM Botanics which is just one example of the cool cats you can find on Green Rooms Market.
Patch also sell pots along with plant stands which are brilliant for adding extra height to larger plants and have also just added these new block colour pots, which are super cute.
BUT HOW DO I KEEP THEM ALIVE?
YOUR NEED-TO-KNOW PLANT GURU IS HERE…
We want, no NEED, to shout about our handy pocket plant guru. Planta is an app which was recommended to us at a dinner party just before lockdown happened and we couldn’t have been told about it sooner. It’s an easy to use app where you plug in the details of all your plants – their species and what room they’re in. Planta will give you more information on that plant such as how much light they require and whether that room is right for it to sit. But the best part is that it will then notify you when your plant needs watering. It’s been an absolute lifesaver (for us, but mainly for the plants) and we now have happy and healthy plants because of it. You can even buy a Premium package where you can give personal care schedules to each plant, it will tell you when to fertilise and how to keep your plant happy over winter. Genius.
I WANT TO PLANT OUTDOORS…
As London dwellers, we’re lucky to have a bit of outdoor space but since moving in, our balcony has been a little sad. But lockdown has changed that and we’re now on a mission to make it a summer-ready haven. As well as purchasing an outdoor balcony sofa (just this cheapy from Amazon which is coming at the end of May – stay tuned!), we’ve also bagged ourselves some planters with the aim of growing flowers and herbs.
For any of you who have seen our Instagram stories, you’ll know that we’re off to an ok start with some of the flowers starting to sprout. The herbs, however, are a different story and are being a little stubborn. We’ll get there though and as two people who aren’t natural gardeners, it’s all trial and error (and a lot of Googling) for us right now.
We also didn’t realise how expensive planters are, but we nabbed some cheap plastic inoffensive looking ones from a site called Electrical World which have done the trick. We also struggled, as we imagine many others have, finding compost. However, Electrical World again helped us there. We also came across some on Amazon, Plant Savers, Wilko and B&Q so if you’re struggling, keeping searching and looking on these sites each day until they have more stock.
We bought our seedlings from Amazon and have decided to grow herbs, assorted flowers and lavender.
So, there you have it. If like us, you’re looking to get green then we hope our handy guide helped a little.
Have any top tips when it comes to being a proud plant parent? Let us know by dropping us a comment or heading over to our Instagram where you can join the conversation.
You grow girl!
David & Mark x