How to choose house plants
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Houseplants make a fantastic addition to any room – not only do they add colour and texture but scented plants will make your home smell wonderful. The great thing about houseplants is that there’s always something to suit your needs, whatever space you have available. If you’re thinking about buying some to brighten up your home, we’re here to help you find the right ones.
Finding the right houseplant for a small room
For smaller rooms, you’ll want to look at plants that take up very little space, won’t topple over easily or spread out too far as they grow – think potted plants that can sit on a windowsill or baskets containing Hanging Ivy that you can suspend from the ceiling.
Peace Lillies take up very little room and are also among the easiest plants to look after. They have beautiful long green leaves, and produce striking white flowers in spring and summertime. All a Peace Lily needs is somewhere where it’s just out of direct sunlight, and a little water every couple of days (if the leaves begin to droop you know it needs watering).
It’s also worth looking at Moth Orchids. Orchids are the most popular type of houseplant, and this variety is one of the easiest to look after as they grow well in homes that use central heating. Moth Orchids need good light during the winter months, but should be moved out of direct sunlight in the summer. Water them regularly to avoid letting the roots dry out and make sure to keep the leaves free of dust. If you follow these simple steps a Moth Orchid will flower beautifully throughout the year.
If you want to bring a little colour into your room, how about a Mini Rose or Flaming Katy? If you’ve never heard of the latter, they’re definitely worth a look as these beautiful little succulent plants take up very little room and produce stunning blooms in a wide variety of colours.
Other popular varieties of houseplant that will take up little space in a busy home include Mother-in-Law Tongue, Boston Fern or a Spider Plant.
Finding the right houseplant for a larger room
In bigger rooms where more space is available, you can try a larger, more elaborate houseplant that you can stand on the floor . Large plants can really help bring a sense of the outdoors to your home and make a wonderful standout feature in a room as they grow and spread out. Always make sure you stand larger plants in a pot cover such as a patterned ceramic pot – you could even bring an individual touch to this by creating your own design on a plain pot. Larger plants can also be decorated at Christmas to make a quirky alternative to a traditional Christmas tree, or why not pick one up in January to replace your festive evergreen?
If you’ve got the room and you’re looking for a larger plant to bring some life to your home, take a look at Dragon Trees, Yuccas and palms – all are beautiful, big plants that thrive in an indoor environment. They need only regular watering, an occasional feed and somewhere to live that gives them good natural light. Repot them every now and then to ensure their continued growth.
How about something more exotic?
There are so many wonderful varieties of houseplant to choose from, but if you’re after something a little bit different you may want to consider one of the following types.
These prickly little plants make a great addition to any home. Cacti can pretty much be left to grow on their own – simply pop one on a windowsill, on a bookshelf or even on your desk. Just make sure they get a little sunlight throughout the day, and take care not to overwater them.
Succulent plants come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, so you’re sure to find one that appeals to you and fits in perfectly wherever your plan on keeping it. Money Plants are among the most popular succulents and it’s easy to see why – they look great and they’re easy to look after as they need only a little water.
If you’re after something really different, why not look at a citrus plant? A Citrofortunella Calamondin will make a great houseplant – keep it well watered and fed, making sure to mist the foliage regularly, and it will bear fruit throughout most of the year that you can use to make marmalades or to slice and put in a refreshing cold drink.
Other unusual houseplants you might want to take a look at include Venus Fly Traps, Bamboo and Bonsai trees.
- Make sure you don’t put your plants in hot spots such as next to radiators or the TV, or close to the oven in the kitchen.
- If you want to keep a houseplant in a room that has little or no natural light, try a Lucky Bamboo or a Cast Iron plant – both of these will cope well in more shaded spots.
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