Home. The sound of effortless conversation and tempting cooking smells welcome us as we walk through the door. We toss our keys in the usual spot, take off our shoes, and heave a sigh of contentment. We’re home. The place where we can be ourselves in all of our no-makeup, unbrushed hair, drinking-straight-from-the-milk-carton-glory. The place where we set the stage for memories and laughter. The place where dreams happen and plans for the future are made.
No matter how big or small, it’s our personal castle. We rule our tiny kingdoms with pride when we choose dishes and plant gardens. Paint samples litter countertops with the promise of possibility, and DIY projects get mentally bookmarked as we drift from room to room, imagining a future for each.
Home is where life happens, and more people move into a new home in the spring and summer than any other time of year. The season for hectic packing and stressful moving is upon us! Establishing the sense of comfort we all dream of for our homes often requires a little bit of teamwork, creativity, and encouragement. Plants help set the tone for a new home perfectly. They bring warmth and delight to an empty space, and their growth is a source of daily inspiration. They are both practical and beautiful, and caring for them brings joy to the gardener. What better way to welcome a loved one to a new place than by giving them natural reminders of Prosperity, Provision, and Perseverance? Get them started with well-wishes that help them to turn their house into a home.
Prosperity has a different meaning for everybody, but we can all agree that good fortune and positive growth play a part. Daffodils perfectly symbolize prosperity because once transplanted to an outside garden, their cheerful flowers will reappear each spring. If the bulbs are healthy and the soil is good, they will even spread and create new plants with every new year. Potted daffodils can be found at most florists. Choose a healthy one, carefully move it into a gift-worthy pot, and pass on the prosperity!
To transplant a store-bought daffodil, keep the pot in a sunny location and make sure it is well-watered. In autumn, after the foliage has died down naturally, you can plant the bulbs at the proper depth in the garden. They should be covered with at least three inches of soil, slightly deeper if your winters are long and cold. When daffodil plants are forced to bloom out of season (as is the case with most potted daffodils we find in stores), they need a little bit of extra patience from the gardener. They may not bloom prolifically during their first spring outdoors, but give them some time. Daffodils are hearty, and in many cases will come back stronger every year. What better way to symbolize prosperity?
Very often, the kitchen is the most popular room in a home. It’s not just the spot where you gather your daily provisions, it’s where people connect with ease. Families talk about the highlights of their day as onions are chopped and pots stirred, and longtime friends catch up on gossip while the tea kettle boils. It is also one of the most functional rooms in the home. Every item has its own purpose and proper place. Herbs symbolize provision perfectly. They are beautiful additions to a window, but they also serve the practical purpose of adding flavor and nourishment to a meal. They meet the ‘form meets function’ requirements of every kitchen with a seamless grace. Choose a few different herbs, (rosemary, basil, and thyme should do nicely) and carefully move them into a planter set with a removable saucer to allow drainage and protect the windowsill.
To successfully maintain an indoor herb garden, place the pots in the sunniest window possible. Choose glazed pottery with a good drainage system to keep the soil at the right level of hydration, and fertilize the plants regularly. Snip off a sprig of rosemary or some basil leaves whenever the recipe calls for it and enjoy the gift of provision!
Home is where laughter and memories are made, but it’s also where some of life’s greatest bumps and bruises happen. Sometimes roofs leak, windows shatter, or cars won’t start on a cold Tuesday morning. And sometimes those all happen in the same week. Anybody who has ever been responsible for their own home knows that bad luck is bound to find us occasionally, and it usually happens at the least convenient time possible. But these hard times build us up too. Aloe is a great way to give a gift that symbolizes the perseverance necessary to get through life’s rough patches because, like us, they are slow-growing and strengthen with age. When trimmed, their leaves produce a gel that naturally treats minor cuts and burns, and they are easy to maintain indoors. When choosing an aloe plant as a housewarming gift, try to find a mature plant which will have stronger healing properties.
To keep your aloe plant healthy, make sure it is in a spot with indirect sunlight and in a pot that allows drainage. Aloes are succulents, so a little water goes a long way. It is in their best interest to allow the soil to dry completely before each watering. The easiest way to determine if your aloe plant is healthy is by observing its leaves. If they are green and straight, instead of brown and curling, it has received the perfect balance of sunlight and water, and will be a source of perseverance and healing for years to come.