Plant Care Information
This general information on some of the most popular House Plants will help you in the care of your plants. The major factors for plants are Light, Water, Temperature, and Fertilizer.
African Violets prefer bright light but no exposure to direct sun. Water moderately, when the soil feels slightly dry to the touch and provide good drainage. Cold water on the foliage may cause leaf spotting. Violets do not like to stand in water. Excess water should be drained from the plant saucer to prevent root rot and to protect furniture. Ideal temperature for Violets are 21-24 degrees Celsius daytime temperature and 17 -21 degrees Celsius nighttime. Fertilize during active growing season with a ‘flowering plant’ fertilizer, preferably organic type.
Ferns thrive in moist soil and medium indirect light. Ferns do not like to sitin water and require good drainage for proper growth. Ferns like humidity and cooler temperatures. Extra humidity can be added by placing rocks and water into the saucer that the plant is sitting on, making sure that roots are not immersed in the water.
Azaleas are one of the most popular house plants. They flower for a longer period of time. As they are a cooler temperature plant, they should be placed or planted outside once they have finished flowering. The cooler outside temperatures will initiate new flower buds for the next year. Azaleas thrive in slightly shaded areas, direct sun will burn the foliage. They require uniformly moist soil but do not like having their roots sitin water. Azaleas prefer a cooler temperature for the best growth. Placing them in a cooler area for the night will help in keeping the blooms on the plant longer.
Due to their preference of slight shade and lots of water, they are acid loving and prefer to be planted in peat moss.
Gloxinias have beautiful large leaves and showy, brightly colored, trumpet shaped flowers. They prefer bright diffused light and moist but not wet soil. They thrive in moderate house temperatures 18- 24 degrees Celsius. They do not like cooler temperaturesand tend to rot. A flowering plant fertilizer with a slightly higher potassium content to sustain the growing tuber, is recommended during growing period. Old blooms need to be removed. Gloxinias are grown from a tuber, so require a dormant period to ‘recharge’ the tuber. Old blooms should be removed fromthe plant to help the development of new blooms.
These Begonias like bright diffused light, but not direct sunlight. They prefer slightly dry soil, not to be overwatered! Do not like to stand in water. Temperatures should be 20 – 24 degrees Celsius in the day and 17 – 18 degrees Celsius at night. Fertilize with recommended flowering plant fertilizer during growing period. If plants growths quickly, trim back to encourage branching.
Green Foliage House plants
Many plants fall into this category. Dracaena, corn plants, rubber plants, ficus, pothos, philodendron. All will benefit from having bright indirect light and no direct sun. Plants should be watered once a week. This watering needs to be a good thorough watering, rather than a little water every 2 days. A thorough watering ensures that all the roots will have water and can continue sending nutrients to the leaves. The frequency of watering is determined by growing conditions, size of plant and pot it sits in. A larger plant with more foliage in a warmer environment needs more water and watered more frequently than a smaller plant in a cooler environment. It might take a few weeks to find out what watering regime the plants respond to best. An organic fertilizer for green plants is best, applied during the growing season.
These would include mum plants, kalanchoe, cyclamen, begonia, violets and others that are grown for their colorful flowers. Most of these plants like slightly moist soil, but not to have their roots sitting in water. Waterlogged soil prevents the airflow to the roots, and impedes the uptake of nutrients and promotes root rot. Most of these plants like bright light. Any of these plants have been grown in a protected environment and do not like the hot sun. The foliage will burn in hot sun.
Assorted Orchid Plants
Have a unique growing requirement all their own. The plants do not rely on soil for their growth requirement. Many orchids originally were growing in trees and need to get their moisture from rain or from having fog or other moisturein the air. These plants should be watered every 8 to 10 days while flowering. During their ‘dormant’ period, many can go for a few weeks without water.If orchids are kept in a dry environment, the foliage should be misted. Orchid plants prefer moderate temperatures and should be fertilized with an orchid specific fertilizer following manufacturers directions.
A combination of green plants growing in similar medium light conditions made up of compatible varieties of plants. Cautious watering is suggested, as these containers do not have drainage and need to be closely monitored for standing water. If water accumulates, it needs to be drained out of the container. A fertilizer for green indoor plants is recommended. Ideally an organic fertilizer, to be used during growing during the growing season.
Peace Lilies (Spathiphyllum)
These are ideal plants for lower light areas, blooming frequently. They do not like very bright light. Soil should be moist but not soggy wet since this would promote root rot and poor aeration. As with most house plants, a little less water is better than too much. Fertilizing very lightly during growing period, suggested 1/2 strength of manufacturers directions, with an organic green plant fertilizer.