...because home doesn't happen overnight.

I mentioned wanting to add a few houseplants in our apartment to help get rid of the inevitable ‘apartment smell.’  I decided to go with a few snake plants since they’re one of the top 15 NASA recommended house plants for improving air quality.

I picked up 2 snake plants {one large one and one small one}, 2 bags of sheet moss and one bag of potting soil at Home Depot for about $40.  I already had two large planters on hand.

The white textured one is from HomeGoods.  I bought it over a year ago and planted a bamboo palm in it at our previous house but it didn’t fare so well.  {i.e. my black thumb killed it}  The smaller black and white floral motif planter was an estate sale purchase.  I paid less than $50 total for them both.

I filled each planter with potting soil then added a snake plant.  I really needed a tad more soil in the smaller pot but ran out and didn’t want to buy more so I made do with what I had.

I’m so glad I did this outside on the balcony of our apartment as I made quite the mess!  Dragging a small trowel and gardening gloves out of storage just seemed like too much of a hassle at the time. So, yeah, I did it all with my bare hands.

I cut and placed a layer of sheet moss on top of the soil.  I’d never used moss on top of soil in a planter before but I wanted to give it a try since it gives the planter a more organic feel and hides the dirt.  I ended up needing only one of the two bags of moss.  I even had a little leftover from the first bag after covering the soil in each planter.

I love the extra green and added texture of the moss.  Makes me want to zap myself with a shrinking laser and traipse through the pot à la Lord of the Rings style.

Luckily, Handy Hubby was around to carry the {heavy!} potted planters inside from the balcony.  I had him place the larger one in the living room next to the sofa.

Snake plants can survive with little light and in this position, the planter receives north light so I think it will do okay here.  I just have to remember not to overwater it!  Snake plants can survive with little water, too.

I placed a cork circle beneath the planter to catch any run off and avoid carpet stains.  {The planter has a drain hole in the bottom.}

I placed the smaller snake plant on a wooden trunk in our bedroom beneath a north-facing window. Again, this one could use some more soil to bring the plant up a bit.  Maybe I’ll get around to that…

I love the oversized scale of it in the bedroom.  The patterned planter is one of my new favorite pieces.  So happy I broke down and bought it at an estate sale last spring.  {It belonged to the Underdog’s previous owner.}  I wasn’t sure what to do with it at the time but I think the clean lines of the snake plant are a great contrast to the swirly floral motif.  Plus, the upward reaching snake plant leaves give a clear view of the planter’s pattern.  I wouldn’t want to cover it up.

There’s even subtle pattern on the rim of the planter.  So charming.

With two snake plants in our houseplant mix, we now have 5 NASA recommended houseplants {along with a few succulents not on the NASA list} in the apartment.  While it’s a far cry from the 15 that NASA recommends {yikes!  That’s triple what we have!}, I still feel good about our plant arsenal. More than likely, I’ll continue to add to it when we move into the Underdog.  Plus, I don’t think HH would be too happy about carrying 15 large planters down the 3 flights of stairs that lead to our apartment when the time comes to move {which we’re thinking will be November} into the Underdog.

While I can’t say that the apartment smell no longer exists {I still get a whiff of stale air and old carpet every now and then}, the good news is that I spent less than $40 on this apartment project but it will completely carry over to the Underdog.  No money wasted!  The pop of living greenery really brings a fresh look to the apartment too.

What plants do you have in your houseplant arsenal?  Which is your favorite?  Are you closer to the NASA recommended #15 than me?

FYI – Snake plants are toxic even though they’ve been used in some herbal remedies.  Always use caution when handling them and use supervision when kids/pets are around!

images:  all Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

Sorry this is going up so late!  I worked second shift tonight and just got home.  My entire morning was spent running around packing bags and coolers for my lil’ and big guys’ weekend camping trip. So that means I have the entire apartment to myself for one night.  It’s eerily quiet!  I barely know what to do with myself.  This is a rare occasion for me.  I’m trying to enjoy it.  I think I may change into my comfy pajamas and read one of the design books I checked out from the library last week. {Our new library has a much better interior design selection than our previous library and I’m taking full advantage of it!}  It’s Darryl Carter’s The New Traditional, if you’re interested and I’m loving it.

But enough about me.  I enjoyed reading through this week’s giveaway comments and seeing what everyone had to say about their own handwriting.  Many of you lamented the sad fact that typing has cursed your handwriting skills.  I guess that’s why it’s never a bad idea to write out a card or letter {versus an email, tweet or text} every once in a while – just to keep our handwriting in check.

Lucky for Sharon {the one who commented that she hates her handwriting, only signs her name and uses a fine tip marker to print everything else} – she’ll get the chance to improve her writing skills with the help of some Jack & Ella stationery! Congrats, Sharon!

Happy, happy weekend to the rest of you!  And happy first day of my favorite season…fall!

images:  book cover image via Gordon Beall