Grow Way More Succulent Pups With These Leaves

I'm pretty much shameless about plucking succulent leaves to grow my own pups at home. Some grow one or two, some don't grow at all, and some grow 10-12. Seriously, I was surprised too. I pulled off these leaves and then left them mostly unattended for about a week and each of the crevices in the leaf started to sprout a new pup. It's a really cool plant, too. When they get larger they look like that picture below and they even flower. So, as you can imagine,  I was pretty thrilled to see all this growth, and the pretty much endless potential for growing new plants from these succulent pups. 

I don't know the exact variety of the plant these leaves came form is called, but a similar looking leaf albeit much shorter comes from the, Sedum spurium 'Purpurteppich', which is a ground cover. If you don't have any succulents growing around your neighborhood, then go check out a gardening store to see what their selection for succulents looks like. You may find something similar, which would totally be worth a shot, considering how cool the results are. I'm sure your local nursery owner wouldn't mind too much if you plucked a few leaves for your own gardening experiment. In fact, they probably have a lot more information about growing them than I do, or maybe they'll tell you the exact same thing: Just put them curved side down in some dirt and let them do their thing. 

They probably know a lot more about it than that. :)

Here's what you'll need:

  • Succulent leaves with ridges
  • Soil
  • Spray bottle with water inside

Directions:

  • Place your leaf curved side down on the soil. 
  • Spray the leaf with room temperature water twice a week to keep it growing. I keep mine in a shady spot inside the house. I think the consistent temperature helps the pups to sprout.
  • Pups should appear within 1-2 weeks. When pups are large enough to plant on their own, detach them from the mother and place them gently in some new soil to establish roots. 

 

If anyone finds this exact variety, let me know. I'd be glad to know them name of them for the future. 

Mantra Monday: Go All In

This is a picture I took of my friend Hope. Super heavily edited obviously, but they came out good. I'll share more later. 

Anyways, I love Bukowski. I didn't always, because he has a pretty crass writing style. But if you can get past it, you'll realize he always says something that makes you feel like you can keep going, scratch that, like there is no choice but to keep going, for example:

"When you play the filed selfishly everything works against you. One can't insist on love or demand affection. You're finally left with whatever you were willing to give which often is: Nothing." - Charles Bukowski

Obviously about relationships, but there's just so many more contexts to apply this to.

If you've ever worked harder, cared more, invested more time, or put more on the table then other people just to wind up with nothing, you can probably relate to this quote, or you're at least hoping it's really true.

While you're in the process of one thing or another it may not seem like the pay-off will be worth the energy you're putting into it. But what Bukowski reminds me is that the inverse of being willing to put yourself out there and work hard is a lot scarier than failure. By never really dropping your guard and expecting everything to come to you, you're insuring, well, nothing, nothing at all. You're just playing safe until the next safe play comes along and the one after that. 

And yeah in a case-by-case situation, not everything will turn out how you wanted. It just doesn't. While I can't expect everything in life to work out on the first try, I can trust the willingness to go the extra mile, put myself out there, and be vulnerable will ultimately yield the best final result. Whenever that is. Accepting that I don't know what that is, is another massive hill for me to climb, but I'll save that for another day.

The point being, you may be working hard, stretching yourself too thin, and even sometimes embarrassing yourself to achieve you goals, but really the only way to go is all in, the alternative is, well, nothing. 

Use Your Pineapple Rind As An Exfoliant

Ok, so I've made a mask with honey and pineapple before, and it's super effective for softening skin. Pineapple's enzymes have the ability to exfoliate skin without any scrubbing, but that also means they can be pretty harsh. So, just be aware. Maybe do a patch test for 5-10 minutes. See how your skin will react. Pineapple does offer benefits for damaged or even burnt skin (read down at bromelain) but it may not be the most pleasant experience on skin that's already a little compromised. Don't say I didn't warn you. If you want to get a more gentle and extra messy shower exfoliation with even more skin softening benefits, drizzle some honey on your pineapple rinds before you scrub down with them. 

Vitamin C - Is a powerful antioxidant, fighting environmental damage from free radicals. It also plays a crucial role in building and, get this, repairing collagen. So, not only are you keeping you skin healthy by supporting it, but you may even be able to reverse some of the damage. All with kitchen scraps. You may have guessed lemons work for this, too. 

Potassium - Since potassium is vital for electrolyte balance and keeping cells internally moisturized, dry skin ban be caused by a lack of potassium. It's best to get this mineral from raw sources so that it's not damaged by heat. So even though, bananas take the cake in the potassium department, you can still give your skin a healthy dose with pineapple, which will be especially beneficial to skin when applied topically. In general, I try to think about the things happening outside of my body as a reflection of things happening inside my body and problem solve from there. It's one of my favorite pastimes. 

Bromelain -  “Bromelain acts as an immunomodulator by raising the impaired immunocytotoxicity of monocytes against tumor cells … modulation of immune functions, its potential to eliminate burn debris and to accelerate wound healing. Topical bromelain (35% in a lipid base) has achieved complete debridement on experimental burns in rats” (Source: Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences, August 2001). You probably don't want to hear about rats when thinking about your skin, but the discoveries with this enzyme are pretty interesting. Preventing tumors? Accelerating wound healing? Soft skin? (Ok, so soft skin seems far less important, relatively speaking, but still a cool effect.)

Sounds pretty promising for some fruit that's pretty common around your local market. So, you may have guessed that anything with this much potential to heal also may be a bit stronger than what you're currently using in your skincare routine. Bromelain will soften and exfoliate skin, but maybe a little too well. 

I know they make pineapple enzyme masks, but and this is a big but, you don't really know how old these products are, and some of these ingredients lose their potency in a matter of hours. Plus using food on your skin is cheeper and you can quality control your own ingredients.

Here's what you'll need:

  • Fresh pineapple rind - you'll want to make sure there's at least a little bit of fruit still on it.

 

Directions:

  • You'll most likely have something that looks like the picture above once you've eaten the inside of your pineapple. 
  • All you do is bring it in the shower with you and apply the fruit to damp skin. Let it sit for a few minutes for the enzymes, vitamins, and minerals to take full effect and gently rinse off.
  • Like I said before, you can a add a little honey to your pineapple before applying it to your skin.
  • You can also use the skin as a loofah, because of its rough edges. I don't really recommend this unless your pineapple is organic. The chemicals they've been treated with may do more harm than good when applied to the skin. But if you're confident about the source of your fruit go ahead and use it as a loofah, while you pretend you live on an island or something equally awesome.