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Houseplants fill a happy space

Calling all #PlantParents: Houseplants 101 Will Help You Keep Your Green Babies Happy and Healthy

Variety of houseplants on a shelf

Whether dracaenas or crassulas, sedums or monsteras, houseplants are having a moment. You can keep your plant babies happy and your home full of green goodness with the upcoming Houseplants 101 class with horticulturist Mauricio Rico.

“Filling your house with plants is a great way to bring life into your home,” says Rico. “And there’s always something new to learn.”

Register now for
Houseplants 101
Oct. 28,
10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

The popularity of houseplants soared in the last decade, with interest exploding during the COVID-19 lockdown. Forced to spend more time at home, people looked to improve the quality of their environment, and plants are an easy and relatively inexpensive way to do just that.

Demand for houseplants surged 18 percent during the pandemic, according to Garden Center magazine.

Today, about two-thirds of Americans own houseplants, according to a survey by Civic Science, and the three strongest motives cited for investing in plants were “I want something pretty to look at,” “It improves the design/look of my home,” and “It improves the air quality in my home.”

These are all great reasons to live with houseplants, says Rico. “It’s also good for your mind,” he says. “People enjoy taking care of something alive. It helps take you out of your own head and gives you something to look forward to.”

Rico started collecting houseplants as a child alongside his mother and grandmother, both ardent plant-collectors. “Today I have 244 houseplants,” he says. “When I was trying to find a house, my first consideration was did it have enough windows for my plants.”

Rico will cover different types of houseplants, explore which plants are easiest for beginners and demonstrate the correct way to plant in a container. He’ll also discuss light requirements, watering and how to prevent insect or fungal infestations.

“We’ll also look at which plants are safe for small children and pets,” says Rico. “A few common houseplants such as Chinese evergreens (Aglaonmena) and dumb cane (Dieffenbachia) are toxic if swallowed.”

Rico emphasizes that growing houseplants is a learning process. “If I’m interested in a new plant, I like to start with a small specimen. I can do a trial run on the conditions it prefers,” he says. “I’ve killed plants, but I’ve always learned something and know how to do better the next time.”

That’s another great thing about houseplants: there’s always something new to learn. “I’m always discovering new plants that I want to grow,” says Rico. “It’s an endlessly fascinating topic.”

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