Houseplants

HouseplantsPerennialsPodcast

How To Grow : Clean Air Houseplants

Learn how to grow common houseplants indoors as a way to clean your air. Listen to podcast: I recently heard a story about NASA sending basil and turnip seeds to the moon in grow chambers to see how they will germinate in that gravity-less, high radiation environment. It prompted me to remember the now famous research NASA also did on house plants. When looking at long term stays on the space station, one of the challenges was to produce clean air for astronauts to breathe. We all know plants are the reason we're alive today for their...

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Houseplants

How to Grow: African Violet

Sun Requirements Bright indirect light is best. They also grow well under grow lights. Bloom Period and Seasonal Color African violets bloom on and off all season long especially if grown under lights Mature Height x Spread 4 to 16 inches tall and wide, depending on the variety. Some miniatures are literally only a few inches tall. African violets are a forever popular plant that delight growers with their diversity of flower colors and shapes. Although they are native to Africa and grow outdoors there in the mountains, they are threatened...

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HerbHouseplants

How to Grow: Aloe Vera

Sun Requirements Bright, indirect light outdoors and a bright room indoors Bloom Period and Plant Shape Outdoors aloe vera has yellow or red flowers in spring depending on the selection. Indoors aloe vera is mostly grown for its succulent leaves and rarely flowers. Mature Height x Spread Outdoors aloe vera can grow mostly to 2 to 3 feet tall and wide depending on the variety with some reaching 10 feet tall. Most indoor aloe vera only grow less than 1 foot tall.  Aloe vera is hardy in USDA zone 8 to 11. It's native to North Africa and...

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BulbsHouseplants

How to Grow: Caladiums

Sun Requirements Bright indirect light and part shade is best, but some newer selections can take more sun. Bloom Period and Seasonal Color Caladiums are mostly grown for their colorful leaves and rarely flower. Mature Height x Spread 1 to 3 feet tall and wide, depending on the variety. Caladiums are subtropical bulbs that produce colorful leaves. The plants can reach to 3 feet tall, but most selections are between 1 to 2 feet tall and wide. Caladiums are hardy in USDA zones 8 to 11. Like dahlias and canna lilies, these bulbs can...

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HouseplantsPodcast

How to Grow: Caring for Holiday Plants

Learn how to take care of Christmas cactus, poinsettia and other holiday plants after the holidays. Listen to Podcast: Now that you've put away all your holiday decorations, what are you going to do with those holiday gift plants still adorning your house? Like many gifts, some are worth saving and others are better regifted. So let's go through the list of holiday gift plants and I'll tell you what I think you should do with them. Some plants require special growing conditions to look beautiful at the holidays. These include poinsettia,...

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Houseplants

How to Grow: Chinese Evergreen

Sun Requirements Chinese evergreens (Aglaonema) grows best in medium light, but tolerates low light conditions. If growing the colorful leaf varieties, grow plants in a room with brighter light. In general, the darker the leaves and stalks, the less light is needed. Bloom Period and Plant Shape Chinese evergreens are not grown for their small flowers the plant produces in the tropical outdoors. Those don't usually appear when it's grown as a houseplant. It's mostly grown for the large, lush green and silver leaves, or multi-colored leaves...

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Houseplants

How to Grow: Chinese Money Plant

Sun Requirements Bright sun is best for Chinese money plants, but avoid direct light and South-facing windows. Too much shade will stimulate the plant to grow larger leaves. Bloom Period and Plant Shape Chinese money plants (Pilea Peperomoides) are mostly grown for their large, round leaves that resemble silver dollars. They will flower with small white flowers on pink stems especially after exposure to cooler temperatures. That are not frost tolerant. Mature Height x Spread The Chinese money plant grows quickly to about 1 foot tall and...

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HouseplantsPerennialsPodcast

How to Grow: Christmas Cactus

Learn about how to grow Christmas cactus to flower this winter in your home. Listen to Podcast: This common flowering houseplant is native the southeastern, coastal mountains of Brazil. It flowers in May in the Southern hemisphere in response to the shorter day lengths. Europeans starting breeding this plant in the 1800's and now it's one of our most treasured symbols of the holidays. It's the Christmas cactus. Christmas cactus is actually a misnomer. This plant can bloom from November to March and it's not really a cactus. Christmas...

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HouseplantsPodcast

How to Grow: Clivia

Listen to this podcast on how to grow Clivia houseplants I like flowering houseplants that need little attention. We all know Christmas cactus are one of the easiest plants to grow and ours are already starting to bloom. But if you're up for a little challenge you might want to try Clivia. This native South African amaryllis family plant was brought to England in the 1800's by plant explorer James Bowie. He cultivated plants in Lady Clive's conservatory in London. Hence the common name. Clivia produces beautiful, strap-like leaves all year...

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GroundcoversHouseplantsPerennialsPodcast

How to Grow: Cyclamen

Listen to this podcast on how to grow and care for cyclamen flowers.   This houseplant and, sometimes garden plant, originated in the Middle East and has spread throughout Europe, Asia and North America. Its name is derived from the Greek, “Kuklos”, which means circle, referring to the shape of the tubers and leaves. It's a beauty, but also was use medically to treat depression. The tubers were even fed to pigs, hence the common name, pig bread. What's this flower? It's the cyclamen. This time of year you'll see many florist cyclamens...

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Growing Vines

Learn about a wide variety of annual and perennial vines to grow including mandevilla, passion flower, trumpet vine, honeysuckle and morning glory. Includes varieties, how to grow, prune and fertilize the vines and fall and winter care.