Cambria Nursery and Florist Cambria Nursery and Florist for all yourgardening needs Cambria Nursery and Florist
  Cambria Nursery and Florist

2801 Eton Road, Cambria CA 93428

Tel: 800-414-6915

Fax: (805) 927-0437

E-Mail: Info@CambriaNursery.Com

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House Plants

We have dedicated a larger section to House plants, as there are distinct techniques and differences between indoor plants and outdoor plants. When choosing a house plant, it is important to know what light conditions it will be in at your house. How to water it and What you will need to look after it.

Light Conditions

We have prepared the chart below to give you an idea of what will grow well in given light conditions.

Light conditions

Suitable house plants

SHADE.

Well away from a window, but enough light to allow you to read a newspaper.

Aglaonema, Aspidistra, Asplenium, Fittonia, Helxine, Philodendron scandens, Sansevieria.

SEMI-SHADE.

Close to a window that does not get any sun or set back from a bright window.

Aglaonema, Aspidistra, Dracaena fragrans, Dracaena marginata, Fatshedera, Fatsia, Ferns, Ficus pumila, Fittonia, Hedera Helix, Helxine, Howea, Maranta, Neanthe, Philodendron scandens, Sansevieria, Scindapsus, Tolmiea

BRIGHT BUT SUNLESS.

In a sunless window or close to a window that gets some sun.

Anthurium, Asparagus, Azalea, Begonia rex, Bromeliads, Chlorophytum, Coleus, Columnea, Cyclamen, Dieffenbachia, Dizygotheca, Fuchsia, Garden bulbs, Hedera, Impatiens, Monstera, Peperomia, Philodendron, Pilea, Saintpaulia, Schefflera, Scindapsus, Spathiphyllum, Vines, Zygocactus

SOME DIRECT SUNLIGHT.

In or very close to an east or west facing window.

Beloperone, Capsicum, Chlorophytum, Chrysanthemum, Codiaeum, Cordyline terminalis, Cuphea, Ficus elastica decora, Gynura, Hoya,  Nertera, Plumbago, Poinsettia,  Sansevieria, solanum, Sparmannia, Tradescantia, Zebrina

SUNNY WINDOW.

In or very close to a south-facing window.

Agapanthus, Bougainvillea, Bouvardia, Cacti and Succulents, Celosia, Citrus,  Heliotropium, Hibiscus, Hippeastrum, Iresine, Jasminum, Lantana, Nerine, Oxalis, Passiflora, Pelargonium, Rosa, Zebrina
 

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Watering

 Watering is by far the most important thing with houseplants. Don't drown them, but don't keep them begging for water. All roots need air as well as water. Do not get into the routine of watering every house plant on a schedule, such as every Saturday morning. The correct watering interval for each plant will vary, some may need no water in the winter, others may need watering daily in the summer. The soil should be moist but not saturated. Some plants need a partial drying-out period between watering, others do not.

When you water, you should fill up the space between the top of the soil and the top of the pot and let that water soak into the soil. You should stop watering as soon as the water starts to come out of the bottom of the pot. Whatever species of house plant you have, you should remove and empty the saucer following watering. Very few house plants enjoy sitting in water. The requirements for your particular houseplant will vary according to the species. A nursery professional can assist you with the care of your specific plant.

Two common problems with watering houseplants are if the water does not appear to be soaking into the soil or the water appears to be flowing through the pot but not wetting the soil.  If water appears to just sit on top of the soil. This is usually caused by soil that has hardened. You should break up the soil with a fork or small trowel and then immerse the pot in a bath of water and saturate the soil. Let the plant drain and then return it to it's growing position. This breaking up of the soil and soaking should mean that next time you water, the water will pass through into the soil. If water just seems to flow through the pot without touching the soil, then this is probably caused by a gap between the soil and the side of the pot. This can also be cured by soaking the house plant.

Soil condition Watering frequency Type of house plant
Moist in summer and dry in winter Water these plants thoroughly and frequently between Spring and Fall, but water sparingly in winter. Always let the top 1/2" of soil dry out between watering. Most foliage house plants
Moist at all times Moist, but not wet. Water carefully each time the surface of the soil becomes dry. Do not water often enough to keep the surface wet. Most flowering house plants
Wet at all times Water thoroughly and frequently enough to keep the compost wet. Very few house plants
Dry in winter Allow the soil to dry out almost completely in the winter. Desert cacti and Succulents
 

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Humidity

House Plants need the correct humidity. The atmosphere in a heated room in winter can be as dry as the desert air. Signs of too little humidity include, leaf edges turning yellow, leaf tips turning brown and shriveling, buds and flowers shriveling then falling.

The best humidity range for house plants is 40% to 60% relative humidity. There are several techniques to ensure you keep the correct humidity level for your house plants.

Group plants together. This will create a micro-climate around the group of plants. Each plant will benefit from the it's own damp compost and the moisture emitted from it's neighbors damp compost. Groups of foliage are also more likely to trap moisture. A group of plants can be placed on a tray containing gravel and water to increase humidity. Select a 2" high waterproof tray and place 1" of gravel in the base of the tray. Fill the tray with water until the water is just below the gravel. Place your plants on top of the gravel. This method will increase the humidity for the house plants.

Mist plants. Use a mister and spray water on the plants. It is best to spray in the morning and to use room temperature water. Besides raising humidity, misting can discourage spider mite and can reduce the dust on leaves. As a general rule, many plants with fuzzy leaves (African violets, Gloxinia, etc) do no like water on their leaves. These plants will benefit more from one of the other methods of increasing humidity.

Double pot. Place your potted house plant in a second larger pot and fill the gap between the pots with moist peat. Keep the peat moist at all times and this will increase the relative humidity around the plant. This double pot method allows you to have a specimen plant away from a group of plants, whilst providing the plant with the humidity it needs. 

Finally, keep the balance. Signs of too much humidity are: patches of grey mould on the leaves, flowers covered with a grey mould, patches of rot on leaves or stems. If your plant develops any of these symptoms, you should decrease humidity and increase air movement.

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Tools for house plants?

Tools may seem like something the outdoor gardener needs, but the house plant expert needs a good selection of tools. We have compiled the list below to get you started.

  • Watering can. Purchase a good watering can with a long narrow spout that you will be able to work under the leaves of the plant. With a lot of house plants, it is essential for the water to get to the soil and not touch the leaves. A good long thin spout on your watering can will enable you to get water to the exact point that needs it.

  • Mister. A spray mister is essential for misting water around a plant to increase the humidity. It can also be used to reduce dust and control pests on house plants. Misters are relatively cheap, so it is a good idea to have a number of them. However, be sure you label the contents of each one. Another good tip is to cover the bottom of the inlet tube with a fine mesh, to filter any debris that may be in the mister.

  • Secateurs / pruners. Investing in a good quality pair of pruners will pay you back with a lifetime of good service. Don't be fooled by the bargain basement prices of lower quality pruners. See the selection at the Nursery and get advice from our professional Gardeners. Make sure the pruners fit you. Not too heavy with a comfortable grip, they should feel like an extension to your arm, not like a cumbersome pair of scissors that seem to have a life of their own.

  • Potting soil. You will at sometime need to re-pot your house plants. When the time comes, you should ensure you have access to a good supply of potting soil. Visit the Nursery, to see the soils we have available.

  • Pots. Get a good supply of pots, both the plain terracotta ones and some of the more decorated ones. The Nursery always has a good selection of pots for you to choose from and will help you to determine the best size and shape of pot for the house plant that you choose. 

  • Drip trays. Clear plastic drip trays are available for underneath your pots to ensure that the water does not stain furniture.

  • Stakes. As your house plants grow, you may need to stake them. So invest in some garden stakes. Good garden stakes are inexpensive, but they can make a difference to your display of house plants.

  • Plant ties. To tie your plants to the stakes for added support.

  • Liquid fertilizer. A nursery professional can help you select the correct liquid fertilizer for your specific houseplant.

  • Small garden fork of old kitchen fork to break up the soil occasionally.

Beyond these essentials, you may want to consider sponges for cleaning the plants, leaf shine for glossing up the leaves, pot sealant for sealing the pots and water holding polymers for the soil. Come to the nursery and see what we have to give your house plants the best possible start and to keep them looking healthy

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