Plant lovers unite on Facebook

WSU alumna, former greenhouse staff creates group for locals to share knowledge, trade, buy plants

Maddy+Lucas%E2%80%99+interest+in+house+plants+led+her+to+establish+a+shared+space+for+those+with+a+similar+interest.+Anyone+can+join+the+Facebook+group.

LAUREN PETTIT

Maddy Lucas’ interest in house plants led her to establish a shared space for those with a similar interest. Anyone can join the Facebook group.

HANNAH FLORES, Evergreen reporter

The season determines Maddy Lucas’ favorite plant. This fall it’s the Piper betel, which produces leaves that are used to flavor dishes around the world.

Lucas decided to take her passion for plants to a virtual space. She started a Facebook group on Nov. 4 for local plant lovers to buy, sell, trade and share plants with one another. She said although she has been thinking about starting a group like this for a long time, she made things official about a week ago.

Lucas said the Facebook group is private, but there is no formal process for those who wish to join. All they have to do is request to join the group.

The plant section at home goods stores always drew Lucas’ attention as a child whenever she went out shopping.

Lucas, WSU alumna and Pullman resident, began building up her plant collection in high school and continued to expand her knowledge while working at the WSU Plant Growth Facilities as a college student.

When Lucas comes home after a long day, she puts on her favorite TV show or cues one of her playlists while watering and checking up on her plant collection.

“There’s something I really enjoy about bringing nature into my home,” Lucas said.

During the warmer months, Lucas uses every opportunity to get outside. She enjoys going on hikes, bird watching and searching for wildflowers.

Because her plant collection has grown over the years, Lucas said her favorite plant usually changes.

Lucas’ coworker recommended she incorporate Piper betel leaves into a dish from a local Thai restaurant.

“I think it’s really cool to make connections like that,” Lucas said. “The plant is also really pretty.”

Similarly, Gillian Huylar, WSU junior and friend of Lucas, said her favorite plant changes depending on what she has in bloom.

Huylar collects orchids, including a miniature orchid that stands about three inches tall. The star-like flowers put off a vanilla scent.

“I had one in bloom with a three-inch wide pink flower that smelled like roses, and that was my favorite,” Huylar said. “It honestly all depends on the season.”

 It’s important to build connections with those who share similar interests. Huylar said the Facebook group is a great way for those who are interested in collecting plants to learn more about how to take care of them and grow their collection.

“Plant people love to share their plants, so if you want to grow your collection, people are more than happy to give you a clipping from something that they have,” Huylar said.