May 08

Why Do We Need Bees?

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The disappearance of bees should not be taken lightly. Researchers are struggling to find out what exactly is causing the decline in bee populations. The reality is, without bees, our ecosystem, economy, food supply and livelihood will suffer. Here are some reasons why these little guys are so important.

Bees are Vital Member of the Ecosystem

Bees, like many other species, play a vital role entire ecosystems to function. 75-95 percent of flowering plants need pollination. Bees belong to a group of animals, called pollinators, who transfer pollen and seeds from one flower to another. This fertilizes the plant to help it grow and produce food. This cross-pollination helps at least 30% of the worlds crops and 90% of wild plants thrive. Not only would we lose beautiful plants, but they re also a vital food source. These plants contribute to the food system by feeding animals such as birds and insects. If the food source for these animals diminished, the entire food chain would suffer.

Bees Give Us Our Favorite Foods

Here are some quick facts:

  • One out of every three bites of food you eat is because of pollinators, such as bees.
  • 70 of the top 100 food crops grown worldwide rely on pollinators. This equates to 90% of the world’s nutrition.

Bees make it possible for your favorite foods to reach your table. We have bees to thank for apples, almonds, pumpkins, berries and a multitude of other kitchen staples. Without bees, we can say good bye to these foods. With 850 million people around the world suffering from lack of food and the global population set to increase to nine billion by 2050, bees will be important players in avoiding mass food scarcity.

Bees Stimulate Our Economy

Bees pollinate more than $15 billion a year in U.S crops. U.S honey bees also produce about $150 million in honey annually. Fewer bees means the economy takes a hit.  As for the global economy, bees contribute around $3,250 per hectare per year. With around 1.4 billion hectares of land used for crops globally, this equals around $4.2 trillion added to the global economy. The global cost of bee decline, including lower crop yields and increased production cost, has been estimated to be as high as $5.7 billion per year.

Why Are Bees Disappearing?

In North America, roughly 50 percent of the bee population has decreased since World War II. But what has changed that is causing this significant decrease?

  • Global warming has caused flowers to bloom earlier or later than usual. The result is when bees come out of hibernation, the flowers they need have already bloomed.
  • Increased development leads to habitat loss for bees. This includes farms that have been abandoned, growing crops without leaving habitat for wildlife, and growing non-pollinator friendly flowers in our gardens.
  • We spray pesticides on plants to kill pests and increase the plants productivity. However, Pesticide use can harm honey bees. For example, neonicotinoids are used to attack the nervous system of pests and can lead to instant death. Even if the bees survive, they can become disoriented and forget their way back to the hive. If enough bees are harmed, this causes Colony Collapse Disorder. (In good news, many of these pesticides have been banned in the European Union and stores in the U.S are opting to remove them from shelves.)

How We Can Protect Bees

Increased research by the U.S Department of Argriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency, is vital and should be broadened to include pollinator research. Additionally, farmers can be rewarded for practices such as leaving habitat for bees in their surrounding fields, alternating crops so bees have food all year long, and not using harmful pesticides.

As for our homes, there are a few smaller things that can be implemented. You can start by planting bee-friendly plants in your garden, such as daisies, crocus, hyacinth, borage, calendula, and wild lilac. At the grocery store, you can support organic farmers who do not use chemicals on their crops. Plus, you can spread the word about the importance of bees and their declining population!

Save the Bees! Visit Bengert Greenhouses to and pick up some bee-friendly plants for your garden today!

Apr 07

Mixing Potted Plants Together

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Don’t Limit Your Pots to Just One Plant

Pots with one type of plant inside adds a pop of color and simplicity to any garden design. However, mixing more than one type of potted plant in a container creates a mini-landscape with a variety of colors and textures. Mixed planters may look difficult to recreate and care for, but some simple care tips for single plant pots can also apply for mixed-plant containers. The only challenge is picking what beautiful plants you want to mix.

Here are some tips for mixing your potted plants.

  1.  Pick a container with drainage holes at the bottom. These holes help avoid root rot, fungi and insects that are attracted by a surplus of water.
  2. Choose plants that require similar soil, light and watering conditions. Base this selection on where you plan to put your container. If you want your container in an area with a lot of sun, choose plants who need full sun.
  3. Add three or four flowering plants for every non-flowering plant. Choose at least three different types of “thriller, filler or spiller plants. “Thrillers” are bright, eye-catching plants, like marigolds or geraniums. “Fillers” are leafy, variegated plants that provide a great backdrop for the “thrillers.” “Spillers” are vines that cascade from the top, over the side of your plants to add an additional layer of interest.
  4. When planting spillers, place them on the outer edges of the container so they can flow over the sides as they grow.
  5. Mix the thrillers and fillers in the remaining space. Arrange them so they have enough space to expand as they grow. At first, your pot may look empty, but as the plants grow, they will fill the bare space.
  6. Water your container about every three days, based on weather conditions. Soil in containers tends to try out quickly.
  7.  Plants in small containers quickly use up the nutrients in the soil, so it will need to be replaced. Apply fertilizer soon after planting and again in the middle of the growing season.

Need more help on planting mixed containers? Check out this video for an easy step-by-step guide for setting up your pot!

Still need Easter flowers?
Take a look at our wide selection of flowers for the holiday!

Feb 22

Begonias 101

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Begonias are an annual plant that can provide beauty to any garden. They come in a variety of colors and can thrive in an array of conditions. They are a popular houseplant that are easy to take care of. Here are some tips about caring for your begonias this spring.

Planting from Tubers

If you are planting tuberous begonias, make sure you plant them only after the winter frost is over. You’ll have plenty of time as tubers can be planted from February to June. Tubers can also be planted indoors about 8 weeks before transplanting them outdoors. Fill a flat box or small pot 2-2 1/2 inches deep. Begonias need around 2 inches all the way around the roots. Place the tubers hallow side up with the top just below the surface. The soil needs to be moist, but not over watered or the plant will not grow properly. In 2-3 weeks after the sprouts emerge, make sure you provide ample light.

Transferring to a Pot or Outdoors

Begonias can be transferred any time after good root development or when the top growth is not more than 4 to 5 inches tall. Plant with 1-1 1/2 inches soil covering the top of the tuber in a well drained garden or a large pot 8 inches or larger. Large pots not only produce fuller plants, but they also provide better stability and multiple small tubers can be planted in a single pot. Depending on the environment, begonias will bloom in 12-20 weeks after planting.

Temperature

The idea temperature for begonias is around 72º F, however temperatures slightly higher or lower are ok. Begonias grow well in warmer, more humid temperatures. 

Sunlight

Begonias do best in locations that have daily full or partial morning sunlight. They will need more sun in cooler climates. Begonias can also tolerate receiving full  sun in the morning and shade in the afternoon, but should not be planted in full shade.

Water

Begonias need to be kept moist at all times. Spraying the plants with water on hotter days will help keep their optimal cool, moist conditions. Also keeping them on a regular watering schedule is ideal. The soil should be moist, but not too wet or soggy. If the soil is dry, the plant needs water. If the soil is wet, the plant has too much water. Too much water can cause the roots to rot can kill the plant.

Fertilizer

Begonias need a mild fertilizer once a month throughout the season. Try fertilizing lightly the first few weeks of planting to avoid too much foliage growth and to promote earlier blooms.

Pruning

Prune your begonias if you notice any blooms that are faded or dead. By taking off the dead heads, the plant will not spend excess energy trying to revive them and will continue to be healthy.

Diseases

Begonias are susceptible to various fungi and bacteria. Make sure they are in an environment that provides good airflow to prevent mildew. If necessary, a fungicide can be used, but only as directed on the label.

Dormancy

In autumn, after your plants leaves have turned yellow and the blooms are gone, withhold water so that the soil can dry completely. Tubers can be left in pots or lifted and stored in a cool, dry (but not freezing) place until next spring.

Are you looking for a cool way to plant your Begonias this spring? Check out this video on how to turn an unusual container into a pot for your Begonias!

 

Feb 06

Behind the Tradition: Roses

rose-red-rose-romantic-rose-bloomAs Valentines day approaches, the feeling of love is in the air. Here’s a look behind one of the biggest symbols of the season: The Rose.

The Symbol:

Roses are probably one of the most prevalent and widely recognized symbols of love in Western culture. They appear in poetry, literature, artwork, films and in every media form in between. A rose is a symbol of romanic love, passion and affection, with the red rose being the most widely recognized. Even the bud has it’s own meaning. The pre-bloomed flower symbolizes youthful love, purity, honest beauty and innocence,  The attractive and unopened rosebud celebrates unpretentious and honest beauty.

Along with the rose itself, the color also provides its own meaning. Red roses symbolize love and romance and are traditional ways to express affection. The pink rose symbolizes love, gratitude and appreciation and are often given as elegant tokens of admiration and appreciation. White roses symbolize marriage, spirituality and new starts, but also can be used as a gesture of remembrance. Orange roses are symbols of enthusiasm and passion while yellow roses symbolize friendship, joy and good health.

The History:

In Greek and Roman times, the rose was a tied to Aphrodite/Venus, the goddess of love. Roses would be used as the main decoration for weddings and ceremonies. Later, early christians used this symbol and associated it with the Virgin Mary. In Shakespearian times, the rose became a poetic standard that was played with in the works of Shakespeare and Gertrude Stein.
It was not only the 18th century that the rose developed as a means of communication between lovers who were forced apart by the standards of the societies they lived in. Along with forbidden love, the red rose came to symbolize true love that was everlasting and can outlive all obstacles. In the 18th century, Charles II of Sweden attached a specific meaning to each flower, making it possible for someone to have a whole conversation using just flowers.

Even today, people continue to use roses as ways to express their love and admiration for their loved ones. Join in on this timeless tradition and send someone you love a bouquet of roses this Valentines Day!

Jan 05

Ten Plants That Will Survive in Your Tiny Apartment

Looking to switch up your household decor? Want to try some houseplants, but worried about care in your small apartment? Here is a list of Ten apartment-friendly plants!

spider plantSpider Plant

Spider plants are a highly adaptable houseplant and super easy to grow. They are named because of their leaves (spiderettes) that dangle down spiders on a web. This plant is best displayed hanging because of their dangling leaves.They can grow in a wide variety of conditions and suffer few problems, other than brown tips.

Care: Spider plants require plenty of light near a window, but keep away from too direct of light. They do well when their roots are crowded. They can easily adapt to temperatures as low as 35 degrees F and as high as 90 degrees F, but prefer temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees. They will even self propagate by send out off-shoots that can be replanted and grown into a new spider plant.

Philodendron

Philodendron will survive indoors year round and even inexperienced houseplant owners will not have problems growing them because they are easily adaptable to any conditions inside your home. While they do well indoors, Philodendron, weather permitting, will enjoy an occasional stay outdoors in a shady spot and will be stressed in the process of moving from indoors to outdoors. While outside, take the change to flush the soil with water and clean the leaves.

Care: The reason Philodendron is so popular is because it tells you what it wants. If its leaves are yellow, then the plant is getting too much sun. Try placing your plant in an area with bright, but indirect sun. If the plant is growing small leaves then it needs more fertilizer. Try liquid houseplant fertilizer. Also make sure that you allow one inch of soil to dry between watering, meaning that Philodendron does not need to be watered daily.

Snake Plant

These interesting-looking plants give your room character and they never got out of style. Snake plants have variegated leaves that grow upright. Some varieties of this plant have yellow or white edges and the plant may rarely bloom white flowers. They are incredibly tough and can survive in a variety of environments. They can withstand weeks of neglect without loosing shape, but this does not mean that you should neglect them. Spider plants can remove toxins, like formaldehyde and benzene, from the air.

Care: Spider plants have tough leaves that can tolerate low light, but will thrive in medium or bright light. Water the plant occasionally and allow the soil to dry between watering. This plant grows best in temperatures between 65 and 80 degrees F.

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Pothos

This indoor plant absorbs and strips toxins like formaldehyde from materials in the home such as carpet. Pothos are great plants for beginning houseplant owners. This plant is an easy way to add some green to your home because it can survive in a variety of conditions. Because they can do well in low light, these plants can make a great addition to your bathroom, office or a lowly lit apartment and are good for hanging baskets or as a climbing plant.

Care: Pothos can thrive in a variety of different temperatures and lighting conditions. However, low light can decrease the leaves’ variegation and they do best in light that is not too direct. These plants can produce stems that will need to be cut when they get too long. Also, make sure your soil dries between waterings.

Paddle Plant

Paddle plants are succulents with a unique shape and low care requirements. They have thick, paddle-shaped leaves and will take on a reddish tint during the winter or when exposed to sun. Their leaves grow to about 6 inches long and mature plants may product yellow flowers in the spring.

Care: Paddle Plants grow best when exposed to bright light, but watch out during the summer. Too much intense light can scorch your plant. These plants can withstand dry air, even during the winter when the heat is cranked up. They prefer temperatures between 60 and 85 F, but just try to avoid temperatures below 60 F. Allow two inches of dirt to dry between watering and your plant will be healthy.

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Aloe Vera

Aloe’s medicinal properties are well known. They can provide instant medication on hand for minor scrapes and burns. The plant can grow three feet high for large indoor spaces. The popular aloe vera works great in small, sunny indoor spaces. This plant is not difficult to care for. If grown outside, they will grow faster in the summer, but as an indoor plant, they will do sin in a pot. Watch out for harsh light as it can turn your Aloe brown.

Care: Aloe likes room temperatures around 70 degrees and plenty of indirect sunlight.  They prefers dry soil, so avoid watering too frequently and allow two inches of dirt to dry between waterings.

Ficus Tree

Ficus trees are a low maintenance, attractive plant. This indoor tree has shiny leaves. Fun fact: The Ficus trees braided trunk does not occur naturally. In order to achieve a braided trunk, multiple young plants can be weaved together to grow into a permanent braid. If grown outdoors, this plant can reach up to 50 feet tall and there are 800 types of ficus trees.

Care: Ficus trees like bright, indirect sunlight. Try putting your plant in a corner of a windowed room. Room temperatures should be between 65 to 75 degrees. Water your ficus every two to three days and give it a bit of fertilizer each year.

Weeping Fig

Weeping figs can add necessary amounts of green to any space and are long-living house plants. While not known to drop leaves when moved, these plants should be kept away from drafts as blasts of cold or hot air can cause its leave to drop. It is also known to drop leaves in the early fall. But don’t worry! Weeping figs will grow new leaves in spring and summer with proper care. In the fall, try lightly misting the leaves of your plant to increase humidity. 

Care: Weeping Figs only need to be watered every four to seven days. But watch out when watering. These trees are sensitive to chlorine, fluoride, and other chemicals often found in tap water, as well as the salt in softened water. Try distilled or filtered water, or allow tap water to sit overnight to dissipate the chemicals. They should be placed in a window that gets bright, indirect sunlight. But make sure you turn plant every once in a while to avoid excess growth on one side.

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Cacti

Cacti require a unique aesthetic that can blend with a variety of apartment styles. Available in various shapes and sizes, there is a cactus for every space. They are extremely well adapted to living in low humidity houses. Cacti are succulents, but not all succulents are cacti. The difference lies in the organs that produce the spines and other characteristics such as fruit formation. These plants are native to the southern United States, Mexico, Central and South America and a few species are native to Haiti, and other islands.

Care: Cacti only need to be watered once a week while they are growing, and can have longer intervals between waterings during the winter months. Before watering, check to see if the soil is dry and water well if it is, then let the water drain off. Place your cactus in a sunny area out of direct sunlight. Too much direct sunlight can cause your cactus to look bleached or orange. Your plant may shrivel in the winter and that is natural. 

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Peace Lily

Peace Lillies are great for small spaces and do not need a lot of sun to survive. Nicknamed the “Closet Plant,”  too much sunlight can actually damage your plant. Watch out for the beautiful white blooms in the spring! While lovely to look at, this plant is actually toxic to animals and humans. so keep away from children and pets and make sure you wash your hands after handling this plant.

Care: Peace Lillies can survive in very dim settings and grow under florescent lights. They are great for bathrooms, offices, apartments not facing the sky or facing another building. This plant doesnt require a lot of watering, but likes to be watered a lot at once. Check the leaves and if they are droopy, water your plant. Also make sure your soil is dried out. Watering once a week is best and lightly spraying the leaves in the summer will keep your plant healthy. If your plant seems to completely droop, don’t give up: water and spritz and give it a chance to revive. If your water is chlorine-heavy, let a container of water stand overnight before watering the plant.

Dec 01

Behind the Tradition: Christmas Wreaths

Did You Know?

The ancient Druids are the first society in known history to have worn holly and mistletoe. They believed that holly was sacred because it remained green all year due to magical properties. In the Persian Empire, wreaths were worn as headbands and believed to be a symbol of importance and success. Ancient Greeks also adopted this philosophy and placed wreaths of laurel on the heads of victorious athletes in their Olympic Games.

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Wreaths were worn as crowns by Roman leaders and were also hung on doorways as a sign of victory. The Romans thought Holly had magical properties and would exchange Holly wreaths as gifts. When the Christianity came to the Roman Empire, Holly wreaths became popular holiday decorations. However, because the plants were believed to be magical, they were considered pagan in nature by some. In 575 a.d, a German Catholic Bishop forbade all Christmas greens, condemning them as “dangerous and heathen”. The plants would not be used again for some time.

By the 17th century, holly had become a part of Christmas celebrations once again, taking on a more spiritual meaning. As a Christian symbol for Christ’s suffering and ultimate triumph over death, it is believed that the holly wreath was representative of the crown of thorns worn by Christ on the cross with the berries symbolizing drops of blood. Later wreaths were formed from a variety of pines and firs, with evergreens, plants that are available year round, embodying eternal life. Christmas Wreaths came to stand for peace, joy, and contentment.

Hung on the door or a window, the wreath has been viewed as an invitation to the spirit of Christmas to enter the home and bring luck, suggesting as well that the Christmas spirit dwells within. Today the wreath has additionally become decorative and is used as an outlet for creativity.

Are you prepared for the holiday season yet with your Christmas Wreath or Poinsettia? Contact Bengert’s Greenhouse today!

Nov 14

Behind the Tradition: Poinsettias

Did You Know?

Poinsettia plants are native to Central America, especially an area of southern Mexico known as “Taxco del Alarcon” where they flower during the winter months. The Aztecs referred to them as “cuetlaxochitl.” They had many uses for poinsettia plants, including using the flowers to make a purple dye for clothes and cosmetics and the white sap for medicine that could treat fevers. Today, the sap is used for latex.

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The poinsettia plant made its way into our culture via Joel Roberts, the first ambassador from the United States to Mexico in 1825. After becoming interested in the plants during a trip to Mexico, he had some of the plants sent to his greenhouses on his plantations in South Carolina.

Fast forward almost 200 years later, and poinsettias can now be found at almost every Christmas celebration. So what do they have to do with the holiday? Some say that the plant’s star shape is a symbol of the Star of Bethlehem, which led the three wise men to the place where Christ was born. Separately, a Mexican legend says that there once was a poor young girl named Pepita who didn’t have anything to give as a gift to Jesus on Christmas Eve. After she brought weeds to the church, they supposedly blossomed into the beautiful red plants that we know as poinsettias. In Mexico, the plants are known as “flores de la noche buena,” or flowers of the holy night.

Are you prepared for the holiday season yet with your Christmas wreaths and poinsettias? Contact Bengert’s Greenhouse today!

Oct 20

Autumn Colors

Fall in Western New York is one of the most beautiful times of the year. When we think about fall, typically one of the first things to come to mind is the foliage. We are surrounded by beautiful colors that are changing every day during the fall, especially now as we near the end of October.

There are many trees and shrubs that provide stunning displays of fall foliage. Have you considered adding any of these to your yard this year?

 

Witch Hazel

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Witch Hazel is a small, multi-stemmed shrub with beautiful dark green leaves that turn a brilliant shade of gold during the fall. It’s an important plant for pollinators as it flowers in the fall.

 

Fothergilla

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Fothergilla is another native plant that is important for pollinators. It slowly grows to a height of about 4 to 6 inches tall and wide. In the fall, you will find it turning all shades of red, gold or orange.

 

Deutzia

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Deutzia is a low growing shrub that gets to be around 2 inches tall and 3 to 4 inches tall. In the springtime, small white flowers bloom. During the fall, its long leaves turn a nice shade of red.

Sep 29

Best Plants for Cool Temperatures

Screen Shot 2016-09-29 at 10.55.56 AMFall has arrived, and with it we will soon be seeing a drop in temperatures. But don’t start putting your gardening equipment away for the winter – you’ve got fall planting to do! Autumn’s cooler temperatures are easier on plants and gardeners alike. The following are the best plants to brighten cool, drizzly days.

Spring Bulbs

All bulbs that bloom in the spring need a period of cold dormancy before they can bloom. Planting bulbs in the fall can ensure a beautiful spring display. Bulbs that deer don’t like to eat include: daffodil, crown imperial, grape hyacinth, allium, English bluebell and snowdrop.

Pansies

Fall is one of the best times to plant your pansies because the ground is still a bit warm, giving their roots time to establish themselves. What’s more, you’ll get to enjoy your pansies for two seasons if you plant them in the fall.

Cool Season Veggies

Many vegetables do very well in the colder temperatures, including broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, kohlrabi, kale, spinach and Swiss chard.

Trees and Shrubs

Fall is a great time to plant your trees and shrubs. While the weather is cool, soil still has some warmth, perfect for the development of roots. Make sure that you’re keeping trees and shrubs adequately watered until the ground freezes so that they have a good start before entering into dormancy in the winter.

Perennials

Fall is a perfectly fine time to plant your perennials. Any that you choose to plant during this season, again, should receive sufficient water until the ground freezes to make sure that their roots are healthy and strong. They should be receiving at least one inch of water once a week.

Did You Know:

Bengert Greenhouses is offering

Extra Large Fall Garden Mums for just $4!

Aug 16

10 Easiest House Plants to Care For

1. Pothos

pothosWhy? This indoor plant absorbs and strips toxins like formaldehyde from materials in the home such as carpet.

How? Pothos can produce long stems, so cut them when they get too long. It can thrive in a variety of different temperatures and lighting conditions. However, low light can decrease the leaves’ variegation. Allow soil to dry between each watering.
 

 

2. Aloe

can-aloe-vera-be-grown-indoorsWhy?  Aloe’s medicinal properties are well known. The plant can grow three feet high for large indoor spaces. The popular aloe vera works great in small, sunny indoor spaces.

How? Aloe likes room temperatures around 70 degrees and plenty of sunlight. They prefers dry soil, so for the best result, water sparingly.
 

 

 

 

3. Spider Plant

spider plantWhy? These interesting-looking plants give your room character and they never got out of style. Spider plants are also known to be popular hanging plants as well.

How? Spider plants require evenly moist soil and bright or medium lighting conditions in temperatures between 60 to 75 degrees.
 

 

4. Jade Plant

jade-plants1-400x533Why? Jade plants are succulents that are easily paired with plants of their type. They also have a long lifespan.

How? Jade plants like their soil somewhat dry and do not require much water. They prefer bright light and average room temperatures.

 

 

 

 

 

5. Rubber Tree

rubber treeWhy? This tree is not only easy-to-grow, but also is generous in its size. Prune any long stems into a shrub shape if your prefer a smaller plant.

How? Let the surface of soil to dry out in between waterings. It thrives best in lighting conditions from medium to bright, and a range of room temperatures from about 60 and 80 degrees.

 

 

 

 

 

6. Diffenbachia

Diffenbachia1Why? The leaves of Diffenbachia can grow to be a foot long and give a tropical-looking accent to home decor. Because of its considerable size, it can provide an interesting focal point to a room.

How? Normal room temperatures for Diffenbachia are sufficient. Evenly moist soil and medium to low lighting conditions for the best result.

 

 

 

 

 

7. Peace Lily

Peace-Lily-6Why? This attractive plant blooms white with vastly dark leaves and is easy to grow.

How? This house plant is great for rooms with few windows because low humidity and low light are preferred. Rooms should be at a standard temperature to about 85 degrees and it prefers moist soil throughout the pot.

 

 

 

 

 

8. Snake Plant

Snake_plantWhy? Snake Plants have variegated leaves that grow upwards. Some of its leaves have yellow or white edges and small white flowers bloom sparingly.

How? This plant grows well in a variety of lighting conditions and at average room temperatures. The air and soil should be somewhat dry.

 

 

 

 

 

9. Ficus

ficus1Why you want it: This indoor tree has shiny leaves and its stems can be braided for a sleek look.

How to care for it: This tree likes bright filtered light. There are 800 types but most varieties require several days of dry soil in between thorough watering. Room temperatures should be between 65 to 75 degrees.

 

 

 

 

 

10. Shamrock Plant

shamrockWhy you want it: This cheery indoor house plant has bright green leaves that look like shamrocks in addition to white flowers on tall stems.

How to care for it: This house plant needs bright but indirect or filtered light. Water thoroughly about once per week but allow the soil to dry for a time in between.

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