I love plants! Ironically, I’m also terrible at growing plants. It’s something of a joke in our family to wonder aloud how long a particular plant will survive whenever I bring one home. I wish I could say that most of them enjoy a long life, but I’ve already admitted to being a terrible gardener. Still, I continue to bring plants home from the grocery store, and some of them even survive!

I tried a few succulents because they were supposed to be impossible to kill. Guess who managed the impossible…

Our two aloe vera plants, Al and Vera, have a home on my desk. They are the newest additions to our plant collection, but they seem to be surviving so far, so I have high hopes that this particular type of succulent is one that really will survive anything.

A Christmas cactus names Iris enjoys its perch on the coffee table in our living room. It hasn’t bloomed since I brought it home, but I find the green chains of leaves to be attractive themselves. Besides, my mom’s Christmas cactus almost never bloomed, and she was actually good with plants!

Lemony Snicket is the lemon tree that is also at home in our living room. It was a few years ago that the kids asked if they could plant the seeds from a lemon that I was using in a recipe. I shrugged and said, “Sure, why not?” I’d assumed that nothing would ever come of the planted seeds, but oddly enough, the lemon tree has continued to thrive. I have no idea what we’ll do once Lemony is too tall to fit in our living room as citrus trees are exactly made to handle the Maine winters.

I bought my first African violet plant because Mom always had lovely ones in her room. It survived, but didn’t really bloom until my IT Staff moved the plant to the kitchen windowsill. The African violet now blooms prolifically and four more have been added to the line-up. The fill the kitchen windowsill, and I must admit that seeing them in bloom, even in the midst of the winter, makes me smile.

As my success with houseplants has been decidedly hit-or-miss, I don’t have any tricks, tips, or words of wisdom other than to keep trying. If you like plants and want to have them around your house, then just try different plants. Try placing them in a different window or on a different table if they aren’t thriving in one place. And if your kids ever ask to try planting the seeds from the produce in your fridge, then make sure you have room for a fruit tree somewhere in your house…