PLANT CARE

Tips & Tricks 

succulent garden

Succulents

About me: Succulents are thick, fleshy plants that have evolved to store water to survive arid climates or tough soil conditions. Often the water is stored in the leaves, giving succulents their signature (and irresistibly cute) look.

 

Difficulty: Beginner

Light: Bright, direct light, full sun, south facing window

 

Water: Only water when the soil is completely dry. Succulents can tolerate less water in the winter or during a string of cloudy, overcast days and may need slightly more frequent watering in the summer.

 

Pet friendly: Yes

 

Sad plant signs: Yellowing, translucent, and mushy leaves indicate overwatering. Shriveled or wrinkly leaves mean your plant is being underwatered. If the majority of the plant looks healthy but there are shriveled leaves at the base of the plant, these may just be older leaves that you can gently remove. If it gets “leggy” with lots of space between the leaves, your plant is trying to reach more direct light.

 

Continuing care: It’s time to repot your succulent when it stops growing, gets root bound, or when the soil is not absorbing water properly. Repot in early spring or early fall. Your plant slowly depletes its soil of nutrients, which is why repotting with fresh, nutrient-rich soil is important. When repotting, upsize to a pot that is 1-3” larger in diameter than its previous container.

Ruby Ficus (Ficus Elastica Ruby)

ruby ficus, ficus elastica ruby

About me: Ruby Ficuses are native to tropical regions of South Asia. The unique tri-colored variegation on a Ruby Ficus varies from a pinky-tinged cream to an almost glowing coral-pink. New growth comes through in an intense pinky-orange shade.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

Light: Bright, indirect, natural light is key!

Water: Keep evenly moist and wait until the top inch or two of soil is dry before watering. When in doubt, let it drought - these plants are prone to overwatering. 

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Dusty leaves can block sun intake, but luckily it’s an easy fix! Just wipe down the leaves as needed. If your leaves are dropping, they’re not getting enough natural light. Crispy brown leaf edges indicate either too much direct sun exposure or underwatering.

Continuing care: These plants can get big even in a small pot, so don't feel the need to pot-up too fast. Instead, you can remove just the top layer of soil and replenish with fresh new potting mix (called top-dressing).

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zz plant, zamioculcas zamiifolia

ZZ plant (Zamioculcas Zamiifolia)

About me: The ZZ plant is a tropical perennial native to Eastern Africa. This plant has gained popularity due to its tolerance of a wide range of conditions. The ZZ grows smooth, naturally shiny leaves that range from bright lime in their youth to a beautiful emerald green in their maturity. 

 

Difficulty: Beginner

 

Light: Medium to bright indirect light, can tolerate low light.

 

Water: Every 2-3 weeks, allowing the soil to dry out between waterings. The ZZ plant is drought tolerant.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Yellow leaves are caused by overwatering. A wilting plant or wrinkled leaves are caused by underwatering.

 

Continuing care: ZZs are slow growers, so they don’t need to be repotted often, just once every few years. Your plant slowly depletes its soil of nutrients, which is why repotting with fresh, nutrient-rich soil is important. When repotting, put your plant in a pot that is 1-3” larger in diameter than its previous container.

Snake plant (Sansevieria trifasciata)

Lisa Rose

About me: Snake plants are a tropical succulent variety characterized by distinguishable sword-like leaves. It's popular for its incredibly easy-going nature and its air-purifying capabilities. The easiest way to kill this plant is to overcare for it!

 

Difficulty: Beginner

 

Light: Bright indirect to low light

 

Water: Every 2-3 weeks, allowing soil to dry out between waterings. Snake plants are drought tolerant.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Wrinkled leaves are caused by underwatering. Mushy leaves are caused by overwatering.

 

Continuing care: Snake plants spread by producing new shoots, called pups, from the base of the plant that look like tiny snake plants emerging from the soil. A single pup does not necessarily mean the plant needs to be repotted, but a plant with several pups will eventually grow bigger and outgrow the pot it is currently in. Take advantage of this and propagate while repotting! Pups with enough roots can be removed from the parent plant and repotted into individual pots.

snake plant, sansevieria
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philodendron monstera, monstera deliciosa plant

Philodendron Monstera (Monstera Deliciosa)

About me: Monsteras are evergreen tropical vines and shrubs that are native to Central America. They are famous for their natural leaf-holes, called fenestrations, earning it the nickname "Swiss Cheese Plant." The fenestrations help the plant maximize sun capture on the forest floor by increasing the spread of the leaf while decreasing the mass of leaf cells to support. It takes time for the leaves to fenestrate, so if you’re not impressed by your plant’s new leaves just yet, wait it out and let it grow!

 

Difficulty: Moderate

Light: Bright to medium indirect light. Not suited for intense, direct sun. Rotate regularly for even growth.

 

Water: Every 1-2 weeks, allowing soil to dry out between waterings. Expect to water more often in brighter light and less often in lower light. Pro tip: Monsteras can benefit from filtered water or water left out overnight before using. Humid conditions are preferred if possible, so this plant benefits from frequent mistings.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: A wilting plant and leaves with crispy, brown edges are caused by under-watering. Yellowing leaves or black stems are caused by overwatering.

 

Continuing care: If you see roots coming out through the drainage hole, it’s time to size up. Your plant slowly depletes its soil of nutrients, which is why repotting with fresh, nutrient-rich soil is important. When repotting, size up to a pot that is 1-3” larger in diameter than its previous container.

Rubber Tree (Ficus Elastica)

Lisa Rose

About me: Ficus elastica is a species of evergreen tropical tree native to South Asia. The Rubber tree belongs to the fig family, Moraceae, and was used for its latex sap to make rubber before synthetics were made available. All plants in this family leak a latexy sap upon wounding and also exhibit foliar polymorphisms, meaning that their leaf shapes will be different in different stages of life. This is a fairly unique trait, as most other plants' leaves make the same shapes throughout their lives.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Medium to bright indirect light, can tolerate bright direct light.

 

Water: Every 1-2 weeks, allowing soil to dry out between waterings. Increase frequency with increased light.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: If color is fading on the leaves, your Ficus is not getting enough sunlight. If the leaves are curling inward and the potting mix is dry, it’s underwatered. If the leaves are dropping and the potting mix is wet, the plant is being overwatered.

 

Continuing care: You should repot your rubber plant when it becomes root-bound and the roots fill the entire pot, or when you see the roots growing through the drainage holes on the bottom of the pot. When repotting, put your plant in a pot that is 1-3” larger in diameter than its previous container.

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pothos plant

Pothos

About me: This trailing vine, native to the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific, has pointed, heart-shaped green leaves that are sometimes variegated with white, yellow, or pale green hues. Pothos grow quickly, often adding between 12 to 18 inches of length in a month.

 

Difficulty: Beginner

 

Light: Bright indirect light preferred, can tolerate low light.

 

Water: 1-2 weeks, allow it to dry out between waterings. The leaves will droop to let you know it’s thirsty.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Pale leaves mean too much sun exposure, while loss of variegation means too little sun. Black spots on the leaves indicate it’s been overwatered, while brown crispy edges mean it’s been under-watered.

 

Continuing care: When your plant has grown too long, it's the perfect time to propagate! Just cut below the little brown bumps (root nodes) at the base of the leaves about 4-6" down, and place your cutting in water. Even with these occasional haircuts, eventually your pothos will become pot-bound. When the leaves droop, no matter how much or how often you water them, drooping is sure sign that roots have probably filled the pot and there is no room to grow. When repotting, put your plant in a pot that is 1-3” larger in diameter than its previous container. 

Air plants (Tillandsia Xerographica)

About me: Air plants get their name because they do not require soil. That being said, they still need water, nutrients, and light to survive. Air plants are epiphytes, meaning that they grow in nature on another tree, host, or object. However, they do not steal nutrients from their host, using it only as a home to grow on. Air plants use tiny vessels located throughout their leaves called trichomes to capture nutrients and moisture from the air. 

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright, indirect light

 

Water: Mist your plant thoroughly once a week so that the entire surface of the plant is moistened, but not so much that there is water dripping down into the plant. Every 1-2 weeks, soak your air plant in room temperature tap water or rain water for 5-10 minutes, then place upside down on a towel to dry.

 

Pet friendly: Yes

 

Sad plant signs: Signs of underwatering your air plant include leaf tips turning brown or crispy. The natural concave shape of air plant leaves tends to become more exaggerated when under-watered. Unfortunately, if your air plant has been over-watered, it’s often too late to save it. If the base of the plant turns brown or black, and leaves are falling out or off from the center, your plant has likely succumbed to rot.

 

Continuing care: Tillandsia Xerographica is a flowering plant. It only blooms once during its lifetime in the right growing conditions. If you’re lucky enough to see its blooms, you’re doing everything right! Send a photo to info@helenolivia.com for us to share in your excitement!

air plant, tillandsia xerographica
purple phalaenopsis orchid plant

Phalaenopsis Orchids

About me: Orchids, like air plants, are epiphytes, meaning they grow naturally on trees and rocks and get most of their nutrients through the air with the help of their air roots. Orchids are tropical plants, making them very sensitive to the cold. Because of this, it’s important to not leave them too close to a chilly window or where there may be a draft.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Prefers bright, indirect light, can tolerate medium, indirect light.

 

Water: Water weekly, weakly at the base of the stem. Water more frequently in brighter light and less frequently in lower light. Orchids like humidity, so regular misting would prove beneficial.

 

Pet friendly: Yes

 

Sad plant signs: Wilting, wrinkling leaves are caused by underwatering. Yellowing leaves can be a sign of overwatering or too much sun exposure. If the flowers are wilting, your orchid is ending its yearly blooming cycle and is beginning to store up energy to bloom again next year.

 

Continuing care: After your blooms have naturally wilted and fallen off, don’t worry – your plant is still alive! Once your orchid enters this dormant stage, it will require less frequent watering. If you keep your orchid around long enough, it will eventually need to be repotted to have more space and fresh nutrients. Repotting orchids can be very tricky, as the roots are extremely sensitive. You can bring it back to our shop or, if you’re up for the challenge, you can repot in a bark or sphagnum moss potting mix, leaving lots of room for air flow.

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Orchid Garden

About me: Our orchid gardens are a potted combination of a phalaenopsis orchid and a variety of green plants such as pothos or ivy. This lush arrangement is a feast for the eyes with lots of color, texture, and height.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright, indirect light

 

Water: It’s important to note that orchids have different water needs than whatever other varieties of plants that may be included in the orchid garden. Orchids need far less water (see above for more information). Water the orchids weekly, weakly right at the base of the stem. The other plants included can have a bigger drink of water, but just be mindful not to get too close to the orchid. They’re all in separate containers underneath the top layer of moss, so the water should not seep into the other plants.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: See above in orchids and pothos sections.

 

Continuing care: Your orchid garden should remain happy in its pot for a while, but once it has become overgrown, you may want to take apart the orchid garden and repot each individual element in its own pot, or instead upgrade the whole garden to a larger receptacle. Up to you!

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bird's nest fern, asplenium nidus

Bird's Nest Fern (Asplenium Nidus)

About me: Bird’s Nest Ferns are a beautiful tropical plant typically found in palm trees. They have unique curly leaves that surround the plant’s fuzzy center, where new leaves emerge from. When these young fronds are just emerging, they resemble bird eggs, earning the plant its popular nickname.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Medium to bright indirect light

 

Water: Every 1-2 weeks, letting the soil dry out about halfway down between

waterings. Don’t water directly into the center of the plant, as it can cause root rot very easily. Instead, water around the perimeter of the pot. High humidity is preferred, so the plant can benefit from frequent misting.

 

Pet friendly: Yes

Sad plant signs: Pale green leaves mean your plant is thirsty, while yellowing lower leaves are caused by overwatering, or potentially by too much light exposure. Brown crispy leaves mean your plant needs more humidity.

 

Continuing care: It's normal for the majority of the plant to be healthy except the lower leaves, which get pale and dry with age. You can remove them at the base with sharp, clean pruning shears. Bird's nest ferns take a long time before needed to be repotted, so if the soil is starting to look depleted of nutrients, you can top-dress the plant (replace just the top layer of soil with fresh potting mix). 

English Ivy (Hedera Helix)

Lisa Rose

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silver bay aglaonema

Aglaonema

About me: Silver Bay Aglaonemas, also commonly referred to as Chinese Evergreens, are believed to bring luck into the home. This lush tropical plant with beautiful silver leaf patterns is generally very easygoing and a breeze to care for, with the exception of it being sensitive to cold temperatures.

 

Difficulty: Beginner

 

Light: Bright indirect light preferred, can tolerate medium indirect light.

 

Water: When the top two inches of the soil feel dry. Aglaonemas prefer a humid environment and can benefit from misting.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Yellow leaves may mean the plant is too wet, but if it’s just the bottom-most leaves that are looking a little sad, that’s normal and nothing to worry about – just gently pluck them off or cut off with clean pruning shears. If your plant is drooping or the tips of the leaves are brown, your aglaonema is telling you it’s thirsty and could use a long drink of water and a misting! Brighter conditions require more frequent watering. Gray leaf spots can be a sign of cold damage.

 

Continuing care: Plant occasionally blooms a spathe and spadix. You can either enjoy the blooms or consider cutting them off, as the blooms can take energy from the rest of the plant. Rotate regularly for even growth.

About me: Ivy is a popular ground cover plant in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions of the U.S. and can be considered an invasive species outdoors in other parts of the country. Ivy is closely associated with Dionysus, the Greek god of vegetation, who is often depicted being covered in ivy. The beautiful trailing vines of ivy make it perfect to keep perched up on a shelf in order to let the vines hang down.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright indirect light

 

Water: Water conservatively. Ivies don’t like to be overwatered, so let the soil dry out thoroughly before rewatering. They do like humidity however, so if your ivy seems a little thirsty try misting it.

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: It’s not very intuitive, but brown and dry edges on the leaves of your ivy mean your plant is being overwatered. The plant roots are drowning and are too wet to deliver nutrients or even water to the leaves, which is why the leaves get crispy.

 

Continuing care: English ivy can benefit from monthly fertilization. Once the soil dries out more quickly than normal or once the plant becomes rootbound, it is time to repot to a container 1-3” larger in diameter than its previous pot.

Fiddle Leaf Fig (Ficus Lyrata)

Lisa Rose

fiddle leaf fig tree, ficus lyrata

About me: This plant originates from tropical Cameroon in Western Africa. Fiddle Leaf Fig plants are adored by many for their large leaves, which require lots of sun to keep healthy. Lovingly nicknamed the “Fickle Leaf Fig,” this plant is one of the most difficult houseplants to care for as it’s extremely sensitive to change.

 

Difficulty: Difficult

 

Light: Bright indirect light to full sun

 

Water: Every 1-2 weeks, allowing soil to dry out.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Yellow leaves are caused by overwatering, while crispy and curling leaves are caused by underwatering or low humidity. Leaf drop is often caused by lack of sun, temperature swings, or changes in humidity.

 

Continuing care: It’s best to hold off on repotting this plant unless absolutely necessary. If you want to change the look, we recommend moving the grow pot into another decorative pot. Rotate regularly for even growth.

alocasia polly plant

Alocasia Polly (Alocasia x Amazonica)

About me: Alocasia Pollies are loved for their unique dark waxy arrowhead-shaped leaves with bright contrasting nerves. Alocasias are tropical plants originating from Southeast Asia that can grow up to 3 feet tall.

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright, indirect sunlight

 

Water: Weekly with frequent misting. Soil should remain evenly moist during growing season. Once fall/winter comes around, wait until the top 2” of the soil is dry before watering.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Brown, scorched edges indicate that the plant is being underwatered or is in direct sunlight as opposed to it’s favored bright, indirect sunlight. Yellow or spotting on the leaves indicate overwatering.

 

Continuing care: If your leaves are fading in color and dying off once fall/winter comes around, your plant isn’t dying – it’s going into dormancy. Reduce your watering and move the plant to someplace warm until spring. While extremely rare, this plant can flower when given excellent conditions. If you’re lucky enough to see a bloom come through, let us know so we can share in the excitement with you!

Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia reginae)

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About me: These gorgeous tall tropical plants are named for their beautiful orange blooms that resemble cranes. While rare, under the right conditions this plant can flower indoors. The large leaves on the Bird of Paradise can emerge with natural lateral tears to allow for wind to pass through without risk of snapping.

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright indirect light to full sun

 

Water: Water every 1-2 weeks, allowing soil to dry out between waterings. Expect to water more often in brighter light and less often in lower light. Birds of Paradise can benefit from filtered water or water left out overnight before using.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Yellow lower leaves can be a sign of overwatering, while wilting curling leaves are a sign of underwatering.

 

Continuing care: Over time the plant will naturally produce “pups,” or young plants, that can be separated and potted to be its own plant.

spider web aralia, fatsia japonica, japanese aralia

Spider Web Aralia (Fatsia Japonica)

About me: Japanese aralia is native to subtropical southern Japan, Korea, and Taiwan. The large leaves are hearty and glossy, and the unique veiny and speckled variegation on the leaves that resembles a web earned the plant its nickname “Spider’s Web Aralia”

 

Difficulty: Difficult

Light: Partial to full shade. Rotate plant regularly to maintain even growth.

 

Water: After top inch of soil dries out. Aralias benefit from high humidity and frequent misting.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Faded leaves indicated too much direct sun exposure. Yellowing, dropping leaves indicate overwatering.

Continuing care: When plant starts to show signs of outgrowing its pot, such as stunted growth or roots growing out of the drainage hole, it’s time to size up to a larger pot. When repotting, put your plant in a pot that is 1-3” larger in diameter than its previous container.

Lidded Terrarium

About me: Lidded terrariums are a fun way to see a mini ecosystem come to life. A closed system is one with a lid that creates a stable environment for the plants to grow in. Ultimately your terrarium will be self-sustaining, but it may need some help at the beginning. Your terrarium may include plants like peperomias, pileas, and nerve plants.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright, indirect light. Rotate terrarium regularly to maintain even growth. If the plants look “leggy,” move terrarium to a slightly brighter location.

 

Water: A healthy terrarium will have soil that remains moist but not soggy while maintaining air flow. Overwatering will cause the glass to fog up. When this happens, take off the lid, wipe down the insides of the glass with a dry paper towel, leave the lid ajar on top to allow for some continued ventilation. After a day or two, close the lid again and repeat as necessary until the terrarium’s moisture levels have balanced.

 

Pet friendly: Yes

 

Sad plant signs: If you see mold starting to develop, take the lid off and scratch the surface of the soil where the mold is to expose it to air.  If the leaves of the plants inside start to look pale, fertilize sparingly.

 

Continuing care: If a plant inside the terrarium is touching the side of the glass, it can attract condensation and be more prone to moisture-related issues. Remove any dead leaves or stems to avoid buildup. If any plant starts to look unhealthy, remove it so it will not spread disease to any remaining healthy plants. If the terrarium is getting overgrown, you can trim back the plants with a set of clean pruning shears. White residue on the inside of the glass may form over time due to the minerals in tap water, and can be removed with a 1:1 mix of water and vinegar.

terrarium, nerve plant, peperomia
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Yucca plant/cane plant (Yucca elephantipes)

About me: Yucca cane plants are native to Guatemala and Southeast Mexico, where the conditions are desert-like. These easy to care for plants thrive on neglect, making them perfect for first-time plant parents!

 

Difficulty: Beginner

 

Light: Bright, indirect light

 

Water: Once a week in spring and summer with good drainage. In winter, water only once every few weeks. Yuccas are easy to overwater! When in doubt, let it drought.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Brown tips of the plant indicate it could use a drink. Yellow leaves indicate overwatering or improper light.

 

Continuing care: Unlike most plants, Yuccas can do well even if slightly pot-bound. Depending on how large your plant is, you may have to be mindful of them being top-heavy and tipping over. Repotting Yuccas is rarely necessary, so top-dressing with fresh soil is a perfect solution if the soil looks depleted of nutrients.

Amaryllis (Hippeastrum)

About me: Amaryllis plants are often associated with Christmas or wintertime, making people think that it only blooms once. However, it is actually a tropical plant that can bloom multiple times in a year! Its flowering is determined mainly by how much moisture the plant is receiving, and the flowers only get bigger and more plentiful with time!

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright, indirect light. Rotate plant regularly to maintain even growth.

 

Water: In active growth phase, keep soil moist but not wet. In dormancy, water weekly, after the top 2” of soil feel dry.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Yellowing leaves and a droopy stem indicates overwatering. If the stem seems droopy during its active growth phase, support the stalk with stakes to prevent tipping over.

 

Continuing care: After your amaryllis flowers are past their prime and the stem turns yellow, cut the flower stalk with clean pruning shears down to about 1” above the bulb. Don’t cut any surrounding leaves. Move to a spot with more dim natural lighting and slightly cooler temperatures for at least 8 weeks and continue to water regularly. To time blooms for Christmas, let your plant rest in dormancy from early September and move to a warm sunny spot in late October.

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poinsettia

Poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima)

About me: Despite its connections to the holiday season, Poinsettias are a tropical plant. Poinsettias are extremely sensitive to cold temperatures and should never be kept outside or near a window where they may touch the cold glass.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright, indirect light

 

Water: Keep soil moist, allow to dry out moderately between waterings, mist regularly.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: If the leaves are wilting and the soil is dry, give your poinsettia some water. Wilting or dropping leaves with wet soil, however, indicates your plant needs to dry out before being watered again.

 

Continuing care: To keep your poinsettia around for seasons to come, cut back the plant once the leaves begin to fade. Let it have a period of rest in a more dimly lit space, allowing the soil to dry out. In the spring, move to a brighter spot and resume regular watering again.

Bulb Garden

About me: Bulb gardens are springy collections of bulb plants such as tulips, daffodils, or hyacinths. Bulb plants have dormancy periods that are able to last through the winter as a result of the food storage organs within the bulb itself.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Bright, indirect light. Rotate pot regularly to maintain even growth.

 

Water: Keep soil slightly moist but not wet.

 

Pet friendly: No

 

Sad plant signs: Yellowing leaves before bloom are a sign of overwatering.

 

Continuing care: After the blooms have died, cut the flower stalks, leaving the surrounding leaves. After the last bloom fades, the leaves are still working hard to absorb energy for the next bloom! Continue to water regularly in a warm sunny spot until the foliage dies back and the plant enters its dormant phase. After the dead leaves are dry, trim them off, move to a cool dark space until early fall, and then plant your bulbs in the garden. Bulbs may take a few years again to bloom, so remain patient!

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Christmas Cactus, plant, pot

Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera)

About me: Christmas cacti are unlike normal desert-dwelling cacti in that they are native to a tropical rainforest climate. They are native to Brazil, typically found in the southeastern coastal mountains growing on trees or rocks in habitats that are generally shady with high humidity.

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Partial shade or diffused light

Water: Weekly, letting soil dry out between waterings. Christmas cacti thrive in humidity, so misting regularly would be beneficial.

 

Pet friendly: Yes

 

Sad plant signs: Shriveled leaves indicate underwatering. If your buds or flowers are dropping prematurely, it may be due to drafts or sudden cool temperature. If the leaves turn red or pink, too much sun exposure or underwatering could be the cause.

 

Continuing care: Your plant will continue to bloom for weeks, although each individual flower may last only a few days. Gently remove wilting blooms after they’ve passed their prime to make the other blooms last as long as possible. Christmas cacti like to be rootbound, so this plant does not require repotting often. Once your plant has stunted its growth or overgrown its pot, wait until after blooming ends to repot. Upsize to a pot 1-3” larger in diameter than its previous pot.

Paperwhites (Narcissus papyraceus)

About me: Paperwhites are a relative of the common daffodil and are perennial bulb plants native to the Mediterranean region. They have a beautifully fragrant smell and are most popular in wintertime!

 

Difficulty: Moderate

 

Light: Before blooming, keep in a sunny spot. Once the buds appear, move to a spot with indirect light. 

 

Water: Keep soil moist but not wet.

 

Pet friendly: No


Sad plant signs: Overwatering causes blooms to die prematurely.

 

Continuing care: Once your blooms start to wilt, gently remove them from the plant in order to keep the newer blooms alive for as long as possible. After the last bloom fades, the leaves are still working hard to absorb energy for the next bloom! After the dead leaves are dry, you can trim them off, move to a cool dark space until early fall, and then plant your bulbs in the garden. Bulbs may take a few years again to bloom, so remain patient!

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