Plants can be used in a variety of ways to add atmosphere to your home and give your decoration character. They can be used to highlight a certain corner or even to camouflage an ugly feature in the room.
Houseplants are expensive items and the choice is extensive so choose carefully. It is important to keep them well and alive. Keep in mind the climate of your region and the amount of sunlight your room gets. Take care of your plants and keep the soil healthy and pest free. You may come across certain problems that indoor plants are prone to –
1) Pests like white flies, mealy bugs and green flies make an appearance every now and then. You can control them with sprays available in the market/ plant nurseries. Always read the instructions before spraying and make sure you carry the plants outdoors while doing so. Let it remain outside for at least 24 hours before bringing it back inside especially if you have kids/ pets.
2) Some diseases and disorders may trouble your plants too like powdery mildew, wilting and yellowing of leaves that eventually fall off. If you see a white powdery formation on the stems, just clip the stem off and burn it so that it doesn’t spread on to other plants. Plants may wilt as a result of too much or too little water or being attacked at the roots by pests. If the leaves drop rapidly, the plant has probably received a shock due to rapid change of temperature. If the leaves turn yellow slowly then the cause might be too much water. So watering should be right, don’t over-water, the soil should be kept just moist.
3) Make sure you keep the plant in a nicely ventilated, sunny spot like a window sill and keep turning the pot frequently. If not done so, the plant will turn towards the sunlight and bend in a one direction and get distorted. Keep turning the pot and it will grow upright. Rooms with south facing windows are very bright and hot so keep the plants at least 3 feet away from them. Herbs can be grown in pots and kept on the kitchen window sill where it gets ample sunlight and yes, keep turning the pot.
4) Hanging baskets are a great way of growing indoor plants. It is a great solution when you don’t have too much space on the ground . The baskets can be hung on parapets and ceilings in a sunny balcony. Even people residing in flats can beautify their balconies with the hanging ones. It makes a world of difference and looks pretty too. Trailing plants like Ivy, Spider plant and even seasonal plants like Petunias, Geraniums, Impatiens can be grown to add color to your space.
Some indoor plants that are quite successfully grown and maintained in India are:
1) Spider plants – They have long , thin leaves and looks best in a basket. the long wiry stems grow into white starry flowers and plantlets giving it a spidery appearance. The plantlets can be carefully snipped and pegged down in separate pots and propagated in a similar manner. I have had a lot of success with this particular plant. I had bought two plants few years ago and now I have at least twenty of them.
They are fuss free and don’t need much attention. Just place the pots in a well ventilated sunny room and water when required so that the soil looks moist.
2)Monstera – A big plant that can add a good amount of drama in any room . It has big leaves and can be grown as a creeper too in a corner near the stairs or in a living room that is well ventilated and well lit. Water well just when it requires. Do not over water.
3) Philodendron– This needs the same treatment as Monstera since both the plants are similar in appearance and structure.
4) Syngoniums – Also called goose foot plants. These are plants with leaves like a goose’s feet and in time, they develop into a climber and can be trained up a trellis or potted in a hanging basket. Water liberally in summers and spring and sparingly in winters. They make great indoor plants.
5) Ferns like asparagus fern and maidenhair fern can be kept indoors even in a hot and humid temperature. They grow well even in bathrooms since they enjoy humid atmosphere. Water when the soil starts to look dry and keep them near a sunny window.
6)Peace lilies– Keep it in a shady spot which doesn’t get direct sun. This can also do well in a humid atmosphere.
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7)Areca palm– Certain palm trees do well indoors too. Areca palm is the most common and the most hardy one I’ve seen. Totally fuss free and grows well. It can grow to a good height so keep it in a big pot. Water well but make sure the water does not collect in the pot or around it. The light should be good and it needs good ventilation too. Avoid contact from direct sunlight. This plant can add a tropical look to any setting and also adds as an air purifier. Keep pruning the tree and remove any stems that have brown leaves.
I know I know all of you are now lost and not able to take your eyes off Reshma’s beautiful space. Head over to her blog and see more mesmerizing images. Leave a comment here and let me know your views.
Grow your indoor garden it’s easy and fun.
Happy gardening folks!!
P.S: All images except last two are provided by Reshma and subject to copyright. Please don’t copy or reuse without her permission. Thank you!!