Monday, 28 March 2016

Flowers & Plants from M&S

 If you follow me on Instagram you'll already have seen the first and second photos posted here, but I really liked them so, uh, sorry, you'll have to see them again.

  Anyway, as my life has been all about home decoration lately, it's no surprise that I discovered I really liked having flowers and plants around the place. I also specifically chose a place with an enormous terrace and have been finding it really disappointing as I just haven't known what to put on it - or rather, I have known, but I haven't found anywhere that will actually sell me what I want for a price I can afford!

  I didn't actually think my local M&S did flowers aside from smaller bouquets as I went in there a few days ago looking for their selection of either real or artificial flowers. I found their artificial selection (and to be honest, considered them to be lovely but way too expensive) and I think I just came to the assumption that if they did have real ones, they'd surely be in the same place. So I was particularly surprised when I popped in the other day to buy an Easter egg for someone and was greeted by the above scene!
They had bloody loads, and not too expensive either which surprised me. I particularly loved these beautiful little bags of tulips above but I didn't end up buying any. I figure at the moment when I'm low on funds and am in need of a LOT of plants, I should be buying things that I know will live for a while. Or at least have the potential to, no matter how hard I try I am a plant murderer, however I'm hoping the fact that my new flat is full of natural light will maybe change that somewhat. I also spent quite a long amount of time looking at their orchids as they have some lovely ones and I thought they were a pretty good price, but I'm not sure how long they live for and google gave me some conflicting answers.

Okay, let's get on to what I DID buy!

 The first plant I bought was this cute little succulent. I really like it, and I wasn't expecting to. It's not the sort of plant I normally like the look of but I thought this one was just so pretty and I love how nice a pattern it has. I was also particularly surprised by how wonderfully this plant has worked in the one corner of my room that never looks complete. I originally tried it next to the window but it didn't look quite right there, so I placed it in the incomplete corner feeling not at all optimistic. Due to the fact that it's such a small plant I didn't think it would work particularly well in the empty space, and yet somehow it really has. I'm really happy with this little plant.

 The other things I bought were these kits - for want of a better word! - that let you grow a tomato plant and some forget me nots. I spent bloody ages looking through all the selection that they had for these kind of things. I was fairly sure on the Forget Me Nots pretty quickly as blue has become one of my favourite colours for flowers and these were the only ones they had in this set, and I was pretty sure I wanted the tomatoes as I knew I'd use them more than I would any other fruity/vegetabley plant. I was particularly torn by getting some of the bigger flowering plants but I knew I'd probably fail at upkeep, and I really really wanted a sunflower but I suspect that the flat owners would object being that my handbook specifically advises against flowers that are too big!

The contents are quite simple! You get your bucket, a little packet of seeds, and all the soil you need. In the case of the tomato plant you get two bags of the compost, one with the Forget Me Nots.

 Then it's a case of following the instructions, which really doesn't take more than a couple of minutes. Pouring it in, popping in the seeds, and watering. THEN PRAYING. Please grow, plants.

 What I'm not showing you is the fact that I couldn't find any decent drip trays that fit these plants, and therefore they are currently sitting on a pair of really cheap baking trays I got from Argos. Oh well.

 I'm really hoping these two grow and I'm really happy with the set so far. To be honest, there's one thing I probably won't do. The instructions for the tomato plant want you to eventually move them into something else - I'm unlikely to do that as realistically, the reason I got one of these kits was so I didn't have to think about it and the bucket they come in is pretty sizeable so I think it'll be fine. You could probably get these for cheaper - my local Poundland had a surprisingly massive collection of seeds, pots and soil etc but I liked the ease of these kits and to be honest I didn't want to be lugging around giant bags of compost. Though you can get them for cheaper I do think these are a good price for what you get and the soil etc does feel like good quality.

I'm hoping these start to grow nicely, and I'll do an update in a few months if they do and I'm able to start getting some goodies off of them. If they do, I also think it's extremely likely that I'll start buying some more! I really want to anyway but I just want to prove I can actually keep them alive. Frankly, the two terrace ones should be fine as they're actually outside and with a bit of a windbreaker so they should be quite happy, but hopefully my mini indoorsy one will do well too. I'm also going to keep an eye on the mini trees they're stocking at my local, and I'm intrigued about maybe getting hold of some roses too. But first let's make sure these ones stay alive...!

If you'd like to check out what your local has to offer, I'd recommend you pop in as if you're anything like me you'll be inexplicably drawn to a particular plant you may not have liked online...! But you can view the online selection for some inspiration here.

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