FRUGALITY- "Prudence in avoiding waste." (

Why This Blog?

I am on a pretty strict food budget; I also pray that my family and I will never go hungry, so after so many years of being creative with limited food supplies and money (including a three-pound whole chicken turned into 13 meals for the 5 of us), P-R-A-Y-S became a food and household budget philosophy. It can be anything that keep you in line with your budget. Like PORTION, ROTATE, ANTICIPATE, YELL (from joy of having money left over) and SAVE. Each post will show how this philosophy was broken down with every dish and budgeting I share. So hold on to your wallets and stay tuned!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Learn to Grow...

... plants I mean! What, you thought I was gonna attack the topic of immaturity? Nah...

Now that we have a house, its care, beauty and updated look falls on just four shoulders, mine and my hubby's. Sure, our kids help, but the grunt work and maintenance, all ours...

Well, gardening, (as if it's not obvious) fell on my "Honey To-Do" list. Only one problem. I don't really do landscape gardening! I've had success with messing with petunia cross-pollination (Genetics 101) for color variety and hardiness and indoor potting adventures, but not a full on, permanent-until-I-pull-it-out gardening! Never! So yeah, I was nervous...

But I had a PLAN: Find dying plants, clean it up of its energy-sapping dead limbs and foliage and bring it home.

By getting dying plants, often deeply discounted, I have a REALISTIC view that if I can't maintain it, I'm only out a few dollars!

Once at home, I let them ACCLIMATE to their new environment by letting them sit in their pot for about 3 days with daily, almost drowning type of watering-it energizes them and roots starts to breathe again. I learned that in Biology and BHG!

Then, the YO-YO effect commences. Do I pot it or in ground? If pot, do I want it to "shoot up or bush out?" If in ground, will it fit with the growing needs of others, or will it be strangled by the other roots? (Hello, it's a process, people! That's why we have a whole science "branch" on just plants! LOL I made a pun!) :-)

So I sit and SURF the web for ideas and care tips so I don't have to be a practicing "Dr. Kavorkian" of the fauna world (poor orchid, ivy (all I tried), and diffenbecchias... I hope they're not too mad at me...). It's difficult on the ego more than you know! (Admit it, you agree! lol)

Indoors, I've taken on, FERNS, DIFFENBECCHIA, POTHOS, AND NOW, ORCHIDS, plural! (Yeah, me, orchids! Yep, must be a glutton for self-destruction. Ok, you can stop laughing!)
You've heard it before and it's true... NASA discovered that live plants indoors refresh oxygen you vitally need to stay healthy when you're home. Why? Here's a quick Botany 101-Plants use carbon dioxide for growth and development. When they are done, oxygen is the byproduct that gets released in the air! Ergo... (drum roll, please...) oxygen is replaced in its immediate area! But did you know that a small plant (6-8") can replenish the oxygen in a 100 sq. ft. of space? How much is that $5-7? And if you put in the time, you can grow a beautiful specimen for only pennies since you rescued it from the clearance prison!

Many of these plants, I bought in super tiny pots to save money and sanity.
I also learned not to give up on my plants that are struggling, this one above, moved with me from AZ!
My clearance and transplant finds... Even the pots, are deeply discounted.

Being Asian and having grown up in a Subtropical climate, this info is "duh!"-we use plants indoors as part of everyone's cheap decor! Plus, part of our cleaning routine, unless it's storming or during a heavy rainfall? Is to open windows, all of them! It's funny, many of us, admire tropical places because of their display of lush foliage, even indoors. Just think about it, you invite the sun in the morning & afternoon, and refresh the air thru windows and doors and you'll probably grow a lot of plants indoors, too!

Though I'm a bundle of nerves in tackling our "Operation Tropical Paradise" on the front yard, I know that if I arm myself with great information, I not only save countless lives of those surely doomed plants (wishful thinking), but I also learn, at the least, a new skill I can perfect each time I dig up that dirt...

So grab those trowels, gloves and watering cans (or hoses, your choice)! You have a lawn to beautify and plant lives to save!

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