The Gift That Keeps on Growing: Why Green Gifting is the Way to Go

The holidays are right around the corner, and gift shopping is in full swing. Not sure what to get the gardener in your life? We’ve got you covered. Even for those less horticulturally inclined, a low-maintenance plant can be a welcome addition to their home or office. Plant presents are going to be all the rage this year, and when you pair them with a bottle of Espoma Organic Liquid Fertilizer, they’ll only continue to grow for holiday seasons to come. Here’s our guide to meaningful plant presents and why green giving is a great option for the holidays!

 

5 Recommendations for a Meaningful Plant Present

     1. Aloe Vera

Health is wealth, and just one aloe vera plant can bring significant medicinal benefits! Aloe can be used to treat burns, improve digestion, nourish skin, and more. These super air-purifying succulents are also easy to care for, and they only need bright natural light and infrequent watering (typically every 3 weeks, but longer in the winter). Gift aloe vera with good wishes for your recipient’s health, and pair your present with Espoma Organic Cactus! Liquid Fertilizer to keep the love growing. 

 

     2. Christmas Cactus

If the name isn’t enough of an indicator, Christmas cactus plants make great holiday gifts! They’re low-maintenance like aloe vera, thriving in bright sunlight and with spaced-out watering. Christmas cacti are known to bloom red, pink, orange, or cream flowers right around the end of December, year after year. With a bottle of Espoma Organic Cactus! Liquid Fertilizer and care instructions, a Christmas cactus is a living, reblooming reminder of love. That’s a gift that truly keeps on giving!

 

3. Peace Lily

The peace lily is an oh-so aesthetically pleasing present to put on your shopping list. With dark green foliage and elegant white flowers, the peace lily is a visually striking addition to any space. It symbolizes purity, rebirth, and tranquility and is a great way to express your genuine support for someone. The peace lily is also easy to care for because the flowers will droop as a signal that the plant needs more water. With visual beauty and simple maintenance, the air-purifying peace lily is a lovely gift that will last beyond the holiday season.

   

 4. Philodendron

Looking for something with more of an artsy touch? Philodendrons are a frequent feature in modern art, making them perfect for a creative plant lover. The plant symbolizes health, growth, and beauty, so they make ideal gifts for someone entering a new phase in life. Philodendrons vary in appearance, but their low-maintenance nature makes them a common pick for plant parents. Amp up the love by gifting a heart-leaf philodendron variation and include a bottle of Espoma Organic Indoor! Liquid Fertilizer to keep the plant thriving for years to come! 

 

5. Poinsettia

This wouldn’t be a proper plant-centric gift guide without mentioning the poinsettia. More than 100 varieties of poinsettias are available today in a wide range of colors, but you can’t go wrong with classic red and green. Poinsettias are easy to find around the holidays and not too difficult to care for—just be sure to limit their exposure to the cold, as cool temperatures can cause the leaves to drop prematurely. To make this festive plant present extra special, repot it in a decorative container!

 

Why Gift a Plant Present?

Sustainable gifts have been on the rise for years now, and what better way to go green than by supporting a local gardening store and gifting a thoughtfully picked plant? Plants make beautiful decor items, functional air purifiers, and unique reminders of love. With a symbolic selection, care instructions, decorative repotting, and a boost from an Espoma Organic Liquid Fertilizer, a plant present will leave a lasting impact on your recipient’s health and happiness… even if they are a bit difficult to wrap.

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We hope this plant-centric gift guide helps you incorporate a little fun and foliage into your holiday shopping this season. Have a plant present idea we missed? 

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Video: Overwintering Tips With Kaleb Wyse!

Ever wonder how to save your favorite outdoor plants from the winter cold? ❄🌨 @Wyse Guide demonstrates how he overwinters his plants.

Kaleb demonstrates how to use our Espoma Organic Bio-tone Starter Plus and Espoma Organic Potting Soil Mix to re-pot your outdoor container plants and bring them inside for the coming winter months.

Learn more about Wyse Guide here:

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VIDEO: Tree Planting Tips with Kaleb Wyse!

Thinking about adding trees 🌳 to your landscape?  @Wyse Guide shares some useful tips on how he plants trees at home! When using the right products like our Espoma Organic Bio-tone Starter Plus! and Espoma Organic Land & Sea Compost you can rest assured you are setting your plants up for success!

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VIDEO: Kaleb Wyse Answers Prayers With New Church Planter!

When there’s an important gardening project to be done… you call Kaleb Wyse. 🦸 And he always brings his trusty Espoma Organic products to make sure it’s a job well done! This time he’s tackling a tricky planter in front of his grandparents’ church that gets a lot of sun, a lot of wind, and a lot of eyes on it. Fortunately with our Espoma Organic Potting Soil Mix and Plant-tone, those plants will stay looking heavenly! Check out the full video below to watch Wyse Guide work his magic. 

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VIDEO: Summer Rayne Oakes’ Festive Fall Urns

When it comes to turning a house into a home, Summer Rayne Oakes knows what she’s doing! With gorgeous urns, pretty patio plants, and a little help from Espoma Organic Potting Soil Mix and Perlite for quick root establishment and big blooms, this cozy meadow house got a welcoming entrance. Watch the full video below!

 

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VIDEO: Weedy Bed to Wonderous Garden with Summer Rayne Oakes

This huge, weedy bed next to a lovely meadow home was a welcome challenge for Summer Rayne Oakes. After weeks of hard work and a lot of Espoma Organic Bio-tone and Land & Sea Compost to help kick-start growth in the original soil, this bed has turned a new leaf. Watch the full transformation below!

 

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Popular Aroids to Add to Your Collection

This blog is inspired by Episode 153 of Bloom and Grow Radio Podcast, where host Maria Failla interviewed Enid Offolter, owner of NSE Tropicals.

​​Aroids have always been fascinating with their different leaf shapes, structures, and textures, so it’s no surprise that this set of plants are blooming into popularity. In this blog we discuss five popular and unique aroids to add to your collection. This blog is definitely geared towards you curious-collector plant parent types out there, so let’s dive in!

What Are Aroids? 

Aroids are in the family Araceae, which includes many common houseplants like philodendrons, anthuriums, monsteras, ZZ plants, and pothos. Many of these are “moderate light” plants indoors, mimicking their natural growing conditions as understory plants outdoors. To learn more about aroids check out our blog, “What’s An Aroid?

Why Are Aroids So Popular? 

Aroids grow well indoors, which helps their popularity because plant parents can grow them easily. They are surprisingly hardy and difficult to kill. Most aroids are also easy to propagate and share with other plant lovers. They come in many different forms too: big round leaves that give you a tropical look, skinny leaves, and three-inch tall all the way up to three-feet tall aroids. 

Now that you’ve learned a bit about aroids, let’s jump into 5 unique aroids that would be great additions to any plant collection. 

5 Popular & Unique Aroids

Unique Aroid #1: Philodendron tortum 

Philodendron tortum has long, skinny leaflets that look similar to a fern and prefers to climb. New growth emerges like a corkscrew and plants can grow about 18 inches to two-feet tall. It’s a fascinating philodendron that adds interesting textures to your collection. 

Being pretty easy to care for, Philodendron tortum doesn’t create much drama or stress. It prefers indoor light conditions at mid-range to bright light with well-draining soil. 

 

Unique Aroid #2: Philodendron bernardopazzii

Next up is Philodendron bernardopazzii with its glossy green leaves and lighter veins down the center. Long, narrow leaves can grow up to three feet in a large enough environment, and form a slender heart shape. The stems also have a bit of red in them. 

Philodendron bernardopazzii is another aroid that’s easy to care for. Give it something to climb for support and it will be even happier. It prefers mid-range to bright light and well-draining soil. 

 

Unique Aroid #3: Anthurium veitchii

Anthurium veitchii has a long leaf that’s corrugated with ribs all the way down its heart shape. Leaves are about eight-inches wide and can grow up to five-feet long in a beautiful shade of green.

Its care can be slightly more difficult than the previous two aroids. It needs more humidity than philodendrons and better placement. Because it can grow long, try growing Anthurium veitchii in a hanging basket or on top of a pedestal. It can get by on a little less light than the above philodendrons, but still prefers medium light. Make sure you plant it in well draining soil. 

 

Unique Aroid #4: Anthurium ‘Selby’s Silver’

Anthurium ‘Selby’s Silver’ is named in honor of Selby Botanical Gardens in Sarasota, Florida. This aroid can grow in much smaller pots with its small, clumping leaves. It stays relatively normal in size with leaves about three-inches long. Its new leaves are reddish, so you’re likely to have all different color leaves growing at the same time.

Anthurium ‘Selby’s Silver’ is another that’s a bit more delicate than a philodendron. Opt for a well-draining soil like our Organic Potting Soil Mix combined with our Organic Charcoal to add even better drainage. These aroids prefer a decent amount of humidity and medium light as well. 

 

Unique Aroid #5: Philodendron distantilobum

And finally we have Philodendron distantilobum. This climbing aroid has a similar leaf shape to  Philodendron tortum, but much wider. New growth also has the corkscrew curl as well. Provide some extra support for this climber, since it attaches to structures as it grows. 

Similar to the other philodendrons, medium to bright light and well draining soil is preferred. 

 

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Want to know more about aroids and unique houseplants? Check out Enid Offolter’s new book, Welcome to the Jungle: Rare Tropical Houseplants to Collect, Grow, and Love

 

About Bloom & Grow Radio Podcast

 

Bloom & Grow Radio Podcast helps people care for plants successfully and cultivate more joy in their lives. Host Maria Failla, a former plant killer turned happy plant lady, interviews experts on various aspects of plant care, and encourages listeners to not only care for plants, but learn to care for themselves along the way.

 

About Our Interviewee

 

NSE Tropicals is well known for its large selection of hard-to-find anthuriums, philodendrons, and other unusual plants. Their online store is dedicated to bringing the odd, unusual, rare, exotic or seemingly unattainable to fellow collectors. 

 

Enid Offolter of NSE Tropicals just released her new book, Welcome to the Jungle: Rare Tropical Houseplants to Collect, Grow, and Love. This book is all about unusual aroids and how to care for them. It profiles 50 plants that aren’t so common in the plant trade and you certainly won’t find at big box stores. 

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VIDEO: Houseplant Heaven with Garden Answer

Is it even possible to have too many houseplants? Not if you’re an expert like Garden Answer! With the help of Espoma’s Organic Potting Mix, walk through a whole haul of exciting, unique, and beautiful houseplants from the research phase all the way to repotting. 

 

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6 Ways to Winterize your Lawn and Brave the Cold

Winter is coming, and while we’re bundling up in our cozy sweaters, lawns need to winterize too! As the temperature drops and the leaves fall, there are plenty of ways to protect and prepare your lawn for future growth. Not sure how to get started? Check out these six tips to help your lawn brave the cold weather! Your spring-gardening-self is sure to thank you for it. 

1) Say Bye to Weeds

If you don’t take care of weeds before the winter, they’ll be competing for nutrients with your precious plants in the spring! Now is the time get them out using a spot spray, pulling them, or applying a preemergent. Espoma Organic Weed Preventer is a long-lasting solution for established lawns, but do not apply a preemergent if you plan on overseeding or have recently seeded. 

2) Rake it Up

Breaking up thatch material is a great way to show your lawn some TLC, especially if you plan to overseed. Thatch—that organic layer of dead roots, shoots, and stems—can block water movement and create unhealthy grass discoloration. Dethatching your lawn with a dethatching rake allows for better oxygen circulation, deeper root growth, and insect prevention. 

3) Pull out the Plugs

Speaking of foot traffic, if your lawn has dealt with a LOT this summer, it might benefit from core aeration. Core aeration machines evenly remove plugs or “cores” of soil from your lawn to relieve compaction, promote root growth, and improve the flow of water and oxygen. There are some manual alternatives to core aeration, but the machines are the most effective. After a busy summer, core aeration is a great way to bring fluffy and healthy green grass back to your lawn.

4) The Gift of Nutrients

Lawns get a lot of traffic in the summer, so it’s important to help your lawn recover and prepare for winter by feeding it nutrients! Make the most of the fallen leaves by mulching your leaf debris and use Espoma Organic’s Fall Winterizer fertilizer for easy, natural replenishment. Packed with potassium and slow-releasing nitrogen, our winterizer is formulated to promote spring greening and provide the long-lasting nutrition your lawn needs.

5) Get the Lime-ing Right

After the stress of summer, your soil pH may need some specific attention. Our Espoma Organic Lightning Lime is an ultra-fast, strong solution that allows your lawn to better intake water and nutrients. As long as the ground isn’t frozen, Lightning Lime is your lawn’s best friend and a great addition to your winterizing checklist. 

6) Grass Goals

To overseed or not to overseed, that is the question! While your decision should depend on your lawn’s goals and state of being, overseeding can improve turf quality, help repair weak spots, and control weeds. It’s a great way to make the most of the last of these warm temperatures and get some growth started before winter settles in!

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Make this coming spring season easier and greener by winterizing your landscape! Have a winterizing tip of your own to share?

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VIDEO: 70,000+ Bulb-Planting Spectacular with Summer Rayne Oakes!

It’s not every day that Summer Rayne Oakes at Flock Finger Lakes plants over 70,000 bulbs, so we were thrilled to help out with the process! With a formula full of slow-release natural ingredients, our Espoma Organic Bulb-Tone delivers big, beautiful blooms to ensure every little bulb gets its chance to shine. Check out the spectacular planting process in the video below! 

 

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