A Starter’s Guide To The Wide World Of Plants

Plants, often overlooked, are the silent wonders of our green earth. Across the globe, there are millions of plant species, yet scientists are just beginning to catalog their vast diversity. 

This article serves as a beginner’s guide to the fascinating world of plants. While we can’t claim to know everything about these extraordinary organisms, our goal is to broaden your understanding of the plant kingdom. 

We are also thrilled to announce our recent acquisition of WaFarmToSchool.org

Together, let’s embark on a journey into the lush landscapes of plants.


Flowers come in a vast array, each with its own special traits. To introduce you to these unique characteristics, we’ll start with birth flowers. These are flowers that bloom in specific months. By sorting flowers by their blooming months, we present them in a simple and clear way.

Birth Flowers

In the past, flowers were used for communication, each carrying its own message. When a baby was born, flowers were sent to announce the successful birth. In return, flowers were sent back, reflecting hopes for the child.

For January babies, expect pink, white, or red carnations, symbolizing gratitude, purity, and strength. However, receiving a snowdrop could be seen as an omen of misfortune.

February newborns might receive violets or primroses, which signify thoughtfulness and everlasting love.

March children are linked with daffodils, representing good fortune and hope.

April ushers in spring, making daisies, symbols of purity, the flower for this month.

May aligns with hawthorn and lily of the valley, signifying happiness and hope, and purity and romance, respectively.

June brings vibrant roses and honeysuckle, associated with love and its varied expressions through different colors.

July’s flowers are larkspurs and water lilies, both reflecting beauty and joy.

In August, the bold gladiolus and pure poppies dominate, symbolizing strength and innocence.

September children enjoy asters and morning glories, which represent elegance and humility as the warm season fades.

October’s feature is marigolds, associated with success and happiness.

November is marked by chrysanthemums, diverse in form and color, reflecting the variety of those born in this month.

Lastly, December’s flowers are holly, narcissus, and poinsettia. Despite their spiky and self-centered reputation, these flowers have their own unique beauty.

The Wonderful Variation In Plant Species

If you wish to give flowers as a birthday gift but are not keen on birth flowers, consider sending a quirky bouquet featuring flowers that start with the recipient’s first initial.

For instance, choosing flowers that start with A could be a fun way to introduce variety with a theme, making for an interesting conversation piece without limiting the bouquet to flowers of the same color.

Another thoughtful approach could be to select flowers native to a particular region. For example, flowers from Australia are quite different from those in the Philippines, and if your recipient has visited these places, they will appreciate the connection to these beautiful plants. Even between nearby countries like England and Scotland, the diversity in plant species is remarkable, and each region’s flora deserves appreciation for its unique characteristics.

You might be surprised to learn that each flower genus can have many variations. Some plants like tomatoes and wheat might produce the same type of produce but appear distinct. Others, such as orchids and thistles, may belong to the same family but differ in color. However, the variations can be even more dramatic.

For instance, there are 16 types of mint flowers, each with a distinct aroma and unique beauty. Beyond the familiar spearmint and peppermint, have you considered lemon balm, water mint, or chocolate mint?

Leveraging these variations can bring life and color to your garden. You could create a theme of true blue blooms, simulate flames with orange and red flowers, or mix flowers of similar shapes but varying colors.

Understanding the range of plant variations can help you design a stunning garden or make a gift unforgettable. Don’t limit yourself to the familiar—explore plants from around the world to discover something truly unique and special.

House Plants

Adding plants to your home can be challenging. While you might want to achieve a certain look, it’s important to treat your plants like pets. Caring for them should be enjoyable. However, if a plant requires complex care or specific conditions to thrive, maintaining a vibrant home can become difficult.

The Rise In Cacti Popularity

Cacti have become popular because they are low-maintenance. Compared to other house plants, cacti are simpler to care for. Though it might take some effort to create the perfect soil mix, once they’re settled, they require minimal attention. 

Remember, a yellow cactus usually means it’s overwatered. If leaves start rusting or curling, trim the damaged parts or treat the plant to prevent further issues. Cacti are available in a variety of shapes and colors, from the unique forms of Korean succulents to the bright hues typical of flowers. 

Some cacti even offer medicinal benefits, but beware—certain varieties can be harmful to pets. Make sure to know what you’re getting into before embracing this trend.

The Best House Plants For Your Home

Choosing the best plant for your home depends on your personal taste, your ability to care for the plant, and your home’s environment.

If you live in mild conditions and prefer not to attend to your plants daily, cacti are a great starting point. However, there’s a wide range of other beautiful succulents to consider.

If your home is in a shaded area, like an apartment or between closely spaced houses, consider opting for hanging plants like pothos, heartleaf philodendron, or spider plants. These plants originate from tropical environments where they thrive in rich soil but with low light. They require frequent soil replenishment but manage well with limited sunlight.

If your home receives some sunlight, particularly through windows, you might opt for plants similar to hanging varieties. In this scenario, you could choose more colorful plants such as elephant ears, coleus, or geraniums.

Conversely, if your home receives a lot of sunlight, ideal plants might include aloe vera, jade plant, or kalanchoe, which all thrive in abundant light.


Fruits are some of the most industrious plants. They produce berries and nutrients solely for us to harvest. If you can grow fruits in your own backyard, you’ll move closer to being self-sufficient and maintaining a healthy lifestyle!

The Amazing Variations Of Fruit

Fruits appear in countless varieties. You can find brown, yellow, blue fruits, and many more. Some fruits are rich in natural sugars, others are packed with protein, filled with fiber, or loaded with potassium.

There’s a whole alphabet of choices when it comes to incorporating fruits into your life. With this knowledge, you should be able to select a plant that you can easily grow at home.

For instance, if you have low iron levels, you might choose to grow fruits that are high in iron. This way, you always have a natural iron supplement available right in your garden.

Alternatively, if you want to create a garden that is not only beautiful but also functional, consider adding fruit-bearing plants. Their berries can complement your garden’s aesthetic perfectly. For example, introducing a splash of purple with certain fruits can add a lovely touch to your scenery.

Moreover, don’t worry if you live in a hot climate—many fruits are well-adapted to handle heat, and some can even thrive in desert conditions!


Across the globe, trees exhibit a fascinating range of shapes and colors. Even common types like chestnut trees display significant variations, and not every peach tree will look identical.

Some trees are small, fitting perfectly in tiny gardens, while others can become standout features on large estates.

Trees For Your Home

Certain trees, like the Taxus celebica, require a lot of space. They are only suitable for large open areas in your home.

Before deciding to plant a tree on your property, consider the space available and the room needed for the tree to grow. Hazel trees, for instance, need plenty of vertical space to grow tall and horizontal space to spread out.

Think about how the tree will complement your current environment. If your landscape is predominantly green, choosing a tree with pink, white, purple, or yellow leaves can add a burst of color.

The appeal of a tree isn’t limited to leaf color; its flowers can also enhance its beauty. Rose trees, for example, are a breathtaking addition to any garden.

Trees With Products

We’ve discussed incorporating fruit-bearing plants into your garden for both sustenance and aesthetic appeal, but this doesn’t mean you’re limited to bushes or small indoor plants.

Adding trees can provide your garden with depth, while fruit-bearing trees add color and lightness. Simple choices like orange trees or more challenging ones like apricot trees are options.

The climate where you live might not be ideal for all types of trees. If you’re determined to grow a persimmon tree, you might need to create a heated indoor space to provide the right climate.

Once you’ve set up a warm environment, you can grow a variety of small trees, including avocado, almond, and mango trees.

Caring for Your Plants

No matter which plant you choose for your home, knowing how to care for it is crucial.

Outdoor Plants

Regardless of the type, it’s essential to monitor your plant’s soil pH and nutrient levels. The pH should generally be between 5 and 7, although some plants may prefer a more alkaline environment.

Before buying a plant, determine what it needs to thrive. If you notice yellowing edges, dark patches, or curling leaves, these could be signs of nutrient deficiency.

The type of soil you use can make a big difference. You might need sandy soil, clay soil, or silty soil, depending on the plant.

Sandy soil is easy to work with and warms up quickly, making it ideal for cooler climates, but it can dry out fast in heat. Clay soil is nutrient-rich and retains water well but can be heavy and less suitable for cold weather. Silty soil is highly fertile and maintains temperature well but has poor drainage.

Understanding what your plants need will guide you in choosing the right soil.

Indoor Plants

Indoor plants can suffer from nitrogen toxicity. They need nitrogen to grow, but too much can make them sluggish and delay flowering.

Signs of nitrogen toxicity include yellowing or curling leaves. To address this, add organic matter to increase soil fertility, ensure proper pH levels, and use supplements if necessary.

Being aware of these issues will help you keep your indoor plants healthy and vibrant.

Final Thoughts

There are so many incredible plants out there, aren’t there? Some we might never get to see in person, but others we can enjoy right in our own backyards. Whatever type of plant you’re thinking about adding to your garden, just remember to understand what it needs and how to take good care of it. Isn’t it wonderful how a little care can go a long way?