Human beings love to be in nature. There is something about the natural world that makes people feel happier and more grounded. A powerful way to bring the outdoors into your living space is by creating your own indoor garden. Indoor plants not only beautify your home but can nurture your mental well-being.
The act of caring for your indoor garden can be a profoundly meditative experience. Plants must be watered mindfully, and a successful plant owner knows to observe the soil’s moisture levels and the plant’s response to hydration. As you nurture your plants, you focus your attention on the present moment, and must let go of any distractions or worries.
Selecting the right plants is crucial for the success of your indoor garden. It is important to group plants with similar light and water requirements together, ensuring they coexist harmoniously. It can be fun to experiment with different pot sizes, heights, and textures to create an aesthetically pleasing display.
Pruning and grooming your plants can also be a therapeutic practice. Delicately trimming away dead or overgrown leaves allows the plant to channel its energy towards new growth. You will also watch your plants grow, and will eventually see that they need to be repotted. This nurturing promotes a sense of connection and purpose, and may serve as inspiration for you to let go of the things that aren’t serving you anymore.
As you embark on your journey of creating a mindful indoor garden, remember that it’s not just about nurturing plants; it’s about nurturing your own well-being. Through each act of watering, pruning, and repotting, you cultivate a deeper sense of connection to the living world around you, fostering a sanctuary of peace and tranquility within your own home.
Buffalo Rising spoke to Patti Jablonski-Dobkin General Manager of Urban Roots Cooperative Garden Market, and Matt Walter, retail store manager of Lockwoods Greenhouses and Farms about how indoor gardening can help people live their best lives.
Urban Roots Cooperative Garden Market, located in downtown Buffalo, started because of the needs of the neighborhood. “A group of neighbors on the West side were trying to beautify their own property and started doing plant swaps with one another,” said Patti Jablonski-Dopkin, general manager. “And they realized that the only real plant supply places were big box stores or they would have to go out to the suburbs to get what they needed. So they sent a bunch of letters out to 100 people and they all responded that they would support a garden center in the city. And it was such a communal effort, that they chose to take on the cooperative business model.” Because of their cooperative model, Buffalonians can become a member-owner of Urban Roots for a one time investment of $100, and can enjoy exclusive benefits including discounts, event notifications, and a say in the businesses’ growth.
Urban Roots would be a fantastic place for first time plant owners to begin an indoor garden. “ When people come to our store, we talk to them about what their light is and what their knowledge is,” shared Jablonski-Dopkin. There are a lot of people that say, ‘I want to start growing plants, but I have no idea…’ so we will direct them to the easier plants. We will tell them exactly what a plant needs to survive and to thrive and we’re always there for people if they start to struggle. They can come back, show us pictures, tell us what’s happening and we can walk them through whatever corrective measures they need to maintain their plants.”
Jablonski-Dopkin feels passionately about the importance of plants in one’s home. ‘I think to live your best life one of the aspects is to have something you find beautiful around you… I think it brings great joy and contentment to have beauty around you and I think plants do that for people… It brings nature inside. So you’re not just going out for a hike or going out in the woods. You can have your own nature right inside your house for your very best life.”
Visiting Lockwood’s Garden Center, in Hamburg, NY can really be an incredible respite during Western New York’s unpredictable weather. “I definitely know that there’s people that come in here, especially in the winter, with how harsh our winters are. They come in, just to get out of the snow and into the warm greenhouses and they say this is their ‘happy place,’ shared Matt Walter, retail manager of Lockwood’s.
Lockwood’s has everything for any gardener, indoor or out, novice or experienced. They also have their own line of specialty products to ensure success. “It all starts with the soil. If you don’t have a good quality of soil to grow, that’s where your first problem would be… We do have our own Lockwood’s mix soil. Unfortunately, we’re sold out for the season, but we do have a special blend that we have made-up that obviously we sell a lot of. That can be used year round. It can be used indoors and outdoors. We also do have tons of pottery of all different sizes and then house plants we do carry year round as well … .We have a unique pineapple plant that actually produces pineapples that you can cut off and eat once it is ready to go, so that’s pretty cool. And there’s really a wide variety of things that …fit to whatever your specific environment is and thrive on that.”
Walter feels that an indoor garden can help Buffalonians lead their best lives because of the act of “watching it grow from something small into something magnificent. That sense of accomplishment.” He also shared that if a plant becomes too successful, that Lockwood’s has a solution: “If a customer has a plant that they’ve been nurturing at home, and now it needs to be repotted and it’s ginormous, we do offer a service where you can bring in your plant and we will repot it for you. We’ll put in soil, if you purchase your pottery with us.”
This series is sponsored by Project Best Life. Buffalo Rising and Project Best Life have teamed up to produce a series on wellness inspiration and advice to direct readers to the people, places, and experiences in Buffalo and beyond that will help them fulfill their health, nutrition, and wellness goals. For more information on how you can live your best life, subscribe to the Project Best Life newsletter.
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