Plant parents: students share how caring for their plants reminds them to care for themselves


Tatiana Serrano-Zeledon

Many students feel that their plants boost their happiness.

On a trip to Home Depot, sophomore Heather Esguerra strolled through the garden section and spotted a bright pink flower on top of a small cactus. She begged her dad to buy it, and on her way home, Esguerra began researching how to take care of it for this was the first succulent to sprout her love of plants.

After purchasing her first succulent, Esguerra found that taking care of her plants has encouraged her to fall into a daily routine.

“I have a set time every Friday for when I water my plants, and that’s also when I take care of my dog and take her on a walk,” Esguerra said.

Sophomore Antoinette Gamboa became interested in succulents and plants while searching for a new hobby.

“I started looking for as many different hobbies as I could, and then I found out about succulents,” Gamboa said. “I adore how pretty they are, and they just look so nice. I wanted to have something nice around me every day.”

After learning about succulents, Gamboa began to view taking care of her plants as a reminder of self-care.

“What it taught me is that if I want to keep myself healthy and happy and not be down all the time – like plants when you don’t take care of them – I just need to take care of myself, and it’s a reminder of self-love,” Gamboa said.

According to Gamboa, taking care of plants after a long period of time has helped her develop a routine every day and feel on track. Different succulents require certain amounts of water and need to be placed in areas with indirect sunlight or else they can sunburn.

“It’s something I’m willing to do, so it never feels like a chore,” Gamboa said.

Senior Sarah Heath loved how pretty plants look, so she started growing house plants around Spring 2019. Heath likes house plants because they do not require too much maintenance, and they can be used as decorations in her bedroom.

“I like how it brings the feeling of the outdoors inside, and I think it’s fun to see them grow over time, knowing you took care of them,” Heath said. “I have also noticed myself paying attention to my surroundings more when outdoors and appreciating nature more than ever.”

According to Esguerra, taking care of plants has made her a better, happier person. She enjoys how plants and succulents can easily liven up her space and help her manage her time.

“It also encourages people to be responsible. My dad was surprised when he found out my plants were still alive,” Esguerra said. “It’s kind of a lot of responsibility, but even though the task is so small, it can teach you a lot.”