Almost every household I go into there are indoor plants, and lately, I go into quite a lot. One of the part-time jobs I have.
Studies show that having houseplants reduces dust and eases stress while adding a pop of colour and interest to the dull corners of any home. But why?
Plants are such givers. They “breathe in” carbon dioxide and “breathe out” oxygen. But this interchange only happens during the day so it’s unwise to have too many plants in your bedroom where you spend the night needing oxygen, as at night they breathe in oxygen. But nothing wrong with sharing but perhaps not with too many.
Growing plants inside has never been something I have felt at peace with. Firstly, they have to be in pots which means they have no freedom to search with their roots for water, nutrients or other plant for companionship and secondly, certainly in colder countries such as the U.K. Indoor plants primarily come from areas like hot tropical rainforests or semi aired deserts. They will forever be in captivity! Never even given the chance to be planted outside as they most certainly won’t survive.
Having said that, I recently decided to buy a small Blue Star Fern (Phlebodium aureum). It was part of an assignment for the Quantum Botanical course I am studying in developing an awareness of Felt Sense.
“A felt sense is an internal aura that encompasses everything you feel and knows about a given subject, person, animal or plant at a given time – encompassing it and communicating it to you” – Eugene Gendlin.
This quote tries with words to explain exactly what Felt Sense is but it is a knowing and connection that can’t really be explained - it is Felt with the entirety of Self.
It took a few days before I could properly feel into this plant’s energy. But what I did feel was it’s very life force. Much like a new pet in one's home.
I decided not to read anything about this plant as I didn’t want any outside influences to interfere with my “feeling into” of this plant for my assignment. After a day I sensed this plant liked to live high up. I moved it upstairs to a small bright windowsill. Over a week I got the overwhelming connection between it and a koala bear. Now I have never encountered a Koala Bear myself.
It was the connection to both and each other I was connecting to. Despite Kaola Bears and this fern not coming from the same continents at all and I have neither been to either of these continents either.
Holding onto trees with its arm-type rhizome roots. After a time I got the sense that Star (as I nicknamed this new creature in my life) needed another of its kind near it and so I got another but different type of fern to accompany it. With these instinctual adaptations and my feeling into this communication with me, an explosion of growth from the Blue Fern commenced. It fireworked with growth, shooting out leaves every few days, pushing and morphing against the plastic pot I bought it in. It was quite literally expanding in joy. I transplanted it into a larger pot, one of a terracotta but it has already shared with me its next wish - to be hanging from a coir basket.
I know this plant will forever feel like an orphan, not having the Amazon Rainforest as its natural canopy and home.
Later I did research into the origins of this plant and its ancestors live amongst other ferns hugging onto the bark of high trees at the top of cloud forests from South America to Florida.
As I will never be able to return it to its homeland I endeavour to feel into its needs as I know it feels into my needs, over our lifetime here.
Every plant in your care deserves to be given the chance to thrive. I invite you to feel into your very own plants if you already have them and treat them not only as a decor piece but as a member of the household - because they are living, breathing life forms and give far more than we give them. Literally, the air we breathe.