Dorm rooms aren’t exactly known for their open spaces and lavish comforts. So you may be thinking to yourself, “I can barely get my bed and clothes in my room, how am I supposed to fit a garden?” But, luckily for you, we’ve got all the tips and tricks you’ll need to set up a beautiful garden right in the comfort of your new home away from home.

Why You Should Start a Garden

The benefits of having greenery in your room are surprisingly extensive. From improving your health to boosting your mood, these are just a few of the many things plants can do for you:
Increase productivity. Is your new change of scenery making it difficult to concentrate? Studies have shown that when workers can see just one plant from their desk, it makes them more creative, attentive, and productive.

  • Improve your air quality. In many ways, indoor plants are like air filters that take carbon dioxide in from the air and release oxygen.
  • Create a stress-free environment. There’s a reason why people head out into nature when they’re feeling stressed. Whether it’s the beautiful flowers or all the extra oxygen you’re getting (or maybe a little bit of both), greenery has a way of naturally improving your mood.
  • Help reduce background noise. When you’re the last person to have a Friday morning final, you’ll really appreciate this!
  • It adds personal style. Odds are, your dorm room is going to have white walls and wooden furniture — things that don’t exactly scream individual style and personality. Adding your favorite flowers can make your space truly feel like it’s your space.

Getting Your Garden Started

Picking Your Favorites

The first thing you need to do is decide what kind of plants and flowers you want in your room. Ideally, you want plants that are small, beautiful, and offer plenty of health benefits. If you’re looking for plants that help you sleep, try incorporating gardenias, jasmine, and peace lily into your bedroom decor. If you want flowers that will make your room smell like Spring all year long, add aromatherapy plants, like sage, lavender, and basil.

Pay Attention to Size

To keep them from overtaking your space, it’s important to know what kind of plants you’re getting. While ferns are beautiful and start out relatively average-sized, many of them can quickly grow to several feet wide — something you and your roommate probably won’t enjoy. Instead, make a big impact with several smaller plants, like elegant bonsai trees, dish gardens, orchids, and succulents.

Keep them Low Maintenance

Between studying, class, and the occasional party or two, you probably won’t have a few hours a day to dedicate to pruning, watering, and caring for your garden. Despite what you may have learned in elementary and middle school, there are dozens of low maintenance plants and flowers that require infrequent waterings and very little light — the perfect requirements for dry, dimly lit dorm rooms!

Get Creative with Your Placement

Plants always look great on tables and desks. But if you’ve already got papers, books, and a laptop covering all of the flat surfaces in your room, there’s still space for a garden. Rose bushes that sit beautifully in their container on the floor or magnetic pots that stick to your mini fridge are just a few of the ways you can incorporate plants into a small space.


Tara Carlson graduated from Hofstra University with a degree in Public Relations and loves any and all things creative writing - which is why she is thrilled to be working with Petal Talk. When she's not writing, you can probably find her swimming at the beach, playing soccer, and catching up on the latest movies (she's a big fan of award season)!

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