🌵 Cactus Friends & Fern Friends 🌿


Recently, a dear friend explained a new analogy for me — the concept of fern friends and cactus friends. I've found it incredible helpful in more ways than one.

Essentially, the idea is that friends in your life can carry cactus energy or fern energy.

In general, it's important to water and fertilize your plants to keep them healthy and growing strong, but some take a lot more watering than others and maybe just aren't fit for your lifestyle — or as your lifestyle and values change over time, so do the friends you carry in your life.

Someone once told me friends are in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime, and I think that analogy pairs well with the fern and cactus concept.

Let's break it down. 

Cactus friends: 🌵

 What this looks like as an analogy:

  • Are strong, reliable, and can last for decades.
  • They don’t need a lot of precious care and attention, they can thrive even with minimal effort.
  • They appreciate all the water and fertilizer you can give them and it fills them up until the next time you can reconnect.

What this looks like in a friendship:

  • You can pick up exactly where you left off and it feels like no time has passed.
  • You don’t harbor any ill-will towards a missed phone call or missed message.
  • Someone who fills your cup when you spend time with them and nothing feels forced or abnormal.

Fern friends: 🌿

What this looks like as an analogy:

  • Require constant watering, misting and maintenance.
  • Don’t give them too much sun or too much shade, they are particular about their surroundings.
  • They need your attention constantly, or they will wither and make you feel guilty for not giving them sustenance.
  • It's also important to note they can be seasonal plants.

What this looks like in a friendship:

  • Make you feel bad for cancelling plans
  • Make you feel guilty for missing birthdays
  • Make you feel bad for not spending enough time with them
  • Makes you feel bad for never texting them back
  • Make you feel exhausted when you’re spending time with them

🌻 What now?

This analogy has been helping me a lot recently. It's been helping me process a loss of a good friend, it's been helping me take stock of where I 'water' my energy.

Some things I hope it can help you with:

  • Is it time to prune some of your ferns? 
  • Who is a cactus in your life that has stayed true and dear?

This means, protecting your energy. Acknowledging who in your life is draining your cup. And building healthy boundaries or watering schedules 💦


I want to thank the beautiful and talented cactus friend Monique for sharing this with me 🌵

1 comment

  • I love this! It also ties in perfectly with my feelings about my fern houseplants 😅


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published