Plant By Numbers
|Mossy Falls (Steve Asbell)|
Most people have at least one or two houseplants plopped here or there in their homes. In his new book , Plant by Numbers, though, Steve Asbell demnstrates how to put houseplants together to make living arrangements. Think of it as a “container” garden for indoors. Use houseplants like you do your spikes, geraniums, and ivy as your “thriller, filler, and spiller”. It can be difficult to put plants together that have the same water and light requirements, but in this book, Steve shows us how to do just that. It is as easy as A, B, C!
|Femme Fatale (Steve Asbell)|
We’ve all had one of those dish gardens given as a gift or from a funeral, at one time or another. Those small plants become huge and quite often high light plants are planted with low light plants or moisture loving plants with cactus. Also, they never have drainage holes. We are set up for failure from the beginning.
The first part of the book deals with the basics of plant care. How much light do I have?- or not have? How do I raise the humidity? How much space do I have? What is the average temperature in my home? How do I plant my container and keep it looking good? What kind of soil do I use for the plants I am using? How do I handle problems that come along, like insects and diseases?
The second part of the book is where the fun begins. Steve gives you the recipes for making the containers. The recipe includes the shopping list with common and botanical names of the plants. If you can’t find the specific plants he recommends, he has alternative options for you to choose from. How could you fail?
|Pink Limeade (Steve Asbell)|
Steve likens these houseplant combinations to “works of living art. Colorful plants are your palette, with patterns, textures and shapes. But what really makes painting with plants exciting is having the opportunity to work with a growing and changing medium.”
|Jungle Glow (Steve Asbell)|
If you don’t find a combination you like, Steve has lists of plants that you can pick from according to the conditions you have in your house. I love these lists! A few examples are edible houseplants, trailing and vining houseplants, lime colored plants, silver plants, pink plants, plants for low light, plants that like it sunny and dry, or sunny and moist. He has a list of plants for every condition you can think of. He also tells you to listen to your plants. Growing healthy plants depends on being a good listener. Visual cues are yellowing leaves, dropping leaves, and pests. You need to pay attention to these things and deal with them immediately. If you have to let the plant go, don’t beat yourself up. It happens.
|Lime and Coconut (Steve Asbell)|
So, if you’ve had bad luck with houseplants in the past, don’t wait to read Steve’s book.
And that’s where the best part comes in. I am giving away Steve’s book, right here! Leave a comment below telling me your favorite houseplant and why. Then, on April 15, yes, the dreaded tax day, I will pick a winner with random.org. I figured we could use something good to think about on tax day. Entries must be received by 8 pm April 15. I will contact the winner via email and if you do not respond within 3 days, you forfeit the book and I will choose someone else. Remember to leave your e-mail in the comment so I can contact you. Thanks!