Thursday, April 16, 2009

Indoor Gardening Fails

Remember my indoor gardening? It didn't work out so well, but I learned a lot of things.

1) We have a cold, humid, and dark apartment that doesn't get direct sunlight.
2) Plants like sunshine and heat.
3) I'm too tired to take plants out into the sunshine on warm days.
4) Even if I could take them out, there are a lot of curious little fingers outside that smoosh the plants.
5) The plants aren't safe inside either. There are also little fingers that live in here.
6) Neither are the plants aren't safe around me. I had a plant that was doing fairly well, and I had high hopes for it. Then I knocked it over, breaking the stems and spilling dirt all over. Oops.

These are my only plants that are still going. They're called 4 O'clocks. They're hanging on, but just barely. I have them next to the kitchen window where they get about 15 minutes of sunlight on some days. I'm hoping that they'll hang on until it is warm and sunny outside and I can put them in a spot where they'll get more light.

Our apartments are right in front of a huge rock wall that has tall trees up on top. Sunlight doesn't reach our apartments or the lawn in front of the apartments until the middle of summer. I'm going to have to find plants that survive with no direct sunlight at all. Suggestions anyone?


  1. I wish I could help!! I'm not much of a green thumb but often daydream of having a beautiful garden with huge cabbages and flowers in Alaska! haha! Sorry I'm not much help!

  2. Ahh, I wish I had some advice. The only thing I can say is to put the plants as near a window as possible so they can get all of the [little] light and warmth available.

    Just a note, there are some other plants that don't require real sunlight such as Orchids that do amazing with little work. I don't know anything about 4 O'clocks though.

  3. I wish I knew! I am terrible at plants. Someone just gave me one today as a present and I am terrified.

  4. I think I can, I think I can help!

    Check plant labels carefully for light requirements. The most common plants that thrive and bloom really well in shade are impatiens, tuberous begonias and fuchsias. All can make you really happy - they are all beautiful and each has a different use. The impatiens are small, lowgrowing, bunching plants that bloom like crazy, the begonias are generally upright and showy, and the fuchsias have a weeping habit and drape beautifully as they bloom their little hearts out for you.

    At this point you will want to purchase small plants rather than seeds or tubers. You can pot them up into larger planters or the ground (I never use any pots smaller than 12" in diameter). Be sure to water and fertilize regularly; just Miracle Gro will work fine - no need to be fancy.

    Sorry seed starting didn't work out well for you this time. If you want to try it again, you will really need a shop light with full-spectrum bulbs in it to place the baby plants under after they pop out of the ground. Keep it about 2inches above them (I prop mine on books or large leftover Legos!) and raise it as they grow. It works great!

    Let me know if you have more questions - I love to garden and share my experience - someone may as well learn from my mistakes!

    Take care, sweetie!

  5. I thought I would stop by your blog for a visit. I'm taking a day off..more like a sick day.
    Thank goodness for laptops.

  6. Visiting from SITS. When you buy seeds or plants they have a light guidline that tells you what requirements are needed for the plant to proper, good luck.

  7. Hi Rachel - Thanks for your comments! I wish it were possible for us to get together and talk plants and other things. But until that day, it's nice to stay in touch this way, isn't it? I think you can be really happy with some shade annuals this summer. They are so cheerful! I love plants.

  8. I'm so sorry to hear that! Some plants can live with reflective light, but they just don't grow as well. What are they?


  9. I tried to grow indooes last year and my dogs ended up digging everything up! LOL!


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