Quite a few people think that putting plastic trees in the sitting room and dusting them off every now and again, is what indoor gardening is all about, but in reality it is a complex and interesting area. There are several different motivations for creating an indoor garden beyond simply thinking that plants are best kept indoors.
Plants are of course fantastic air filters to reduce levels of carbon dioxide, in addition to other potentially dangerous gases and toxins. But the best reason to start an indoor garden is the fact that it could make your sitting room, a place of great beauty and immeasurably and to the decor.
Choosing what you put in your interior spaces involves looking at adaptability, and whether or not the plants are able to survive and grow in their new environment. Other questions might include how long you have available to tend to the plants, the amount of interior direct light, and the financial resources you have available to create your indoor garden.
If you do not wish to spend very much, then start with smaller, cheaper plants. Those with more financial resources will be in a position to buy full-size plants.
There is also the issue of seasonality: Some plants will only be attractive at certain times of year, while others will constantly add visual interest. Many people like to grow herbs indoors as they are both pretty and of obvious use in the kitchen.
Herbs are fast growing and you’ll soon have attractive, bushy foliage. Most people choose herbs for the taste, with the most popular being oregano, sage, thyme, dill and chives.
Further below, I will share a bit of this and that regarding growing your own indoor herb garden.
Your choice of plants for indoor gardening should also at be guided by whether you have done it before. Gardeners with little experience should perhaps consider hardier plants that are more difficult to damage. These might include Bromeliads, Coleus, Scandens, Cyperius, Fancia and popular succulents.
Also further down, I have included a section consisting of some tips on growing Bromeliads, and once you go over that section, you will find a quick list of ten plants that are pretty easy to grow indoors.
Okay, so, there are a few extra principles that you must stick to with indoor gardening that are not the same as gardening out-of-doors. The levels of light are far lower and it is therefore very important to consider the position of the plant.
Find out the exact levels of sunlight appropriate for your choice of plant, and only choose those that require relatively small or mid-levels of light—perhaps Philodendrons or ferns—though there is the option of non-natural light.
Fully-grown plants from any source will often be used to far more light, and will need to get used to reduced levels through steady reductions in sunlight the plant gets. After the plant is placed indoors, you must try to face different sides of the plant towards the sun to stop the plant from growing lopsided.
Water is just as important in indoor gardening as it would be for traditional outdoor gardening. Watering levels will, as ever, be different for different types of plant.
Drainage is extremely important for indoor plants and you must ensure that there are holes in the bottom of the pot or container, and something for water to leak into without damaging flooring. Also make sure that the water is not much colder or hotter than the room itself.
Levels of heat are generally important to make sure that your plants thrive. Temperatures between 10 and 15 degrees should be fine, but you should not allow room levels to change too fast if you want to avoid damaging the plants.
Indoor gardening is something most people find fairly easy and is really not at all different from outdoor gardening. Indoor gardening also has a number of big plus points.
Outdoor plants are often damaged by insect life, caterpillars and other larvae. The constant fear of very low temperatures in winter will also not be an issue.
Indoor Gardening With Containers
Many people love gardens but have no usable areas in which to create them. This should not present a problem for those who love tending plants, however.
There are lots of possible outside areas, such as balconies, patios, decks or even well-lit windows that can be used for container gardening. This can be both a lot of fun and also create small quantities of food, so read on and consider the possibilities.
Ideas For Container Gardening
There was a time when gardening was only available to those who owned outside land. With only a little effort, it is possible to create a visually attractive small garden in and around an apartment.
This will usually involve container gardening, using containers specially designed for the purpose. You will never have to mow any grass, yet will be able to create beautiful vistas to look out over. It is possible to grow perennial and annual plants, and move on to a small shrub or two—even a tree is possible!
Container gardening does require certain effort obviously. You will need to plan your garden carefully, and as with any other form of gardening, the first step involves identifying your USDA zone.
This will allow you to choose the correct type of plants. Then consider how much sunlight you can get in your living space in order to make the final decision of your favorite plants.
It is definitely preferable to purchase plants from a nursery, rather than trying to grow them from the seeds without having the perfect conditions. The weaker kinds of plants used in container gardening should not be kept lower than 45 degrees, and should be away from any strong wind speeds. Also make sure that plants do not stay out at any time when there is likely to be a frost.
You must also forget the idea that any plant that normally grows outside is definitely not usable for container gardening. This is not true, and if you don’t believe this, then you really should have a try. Also remember that virtually anything with a hole to let water out, is available for use in container gardening.
Container gardening also needs a fairly low financial input—at least at first. You can achieve really good results while having to expend little effort to maintain your garden. You should not need much fertilizer in container gardening, and only small quantities of water are needed—the precise amount depending on the individual plant type.
There are several options to grow edible plants in container gardening. All you’ll need is some natural light and a little watering.
With this very small input, you can obtain enough freshly picked vegetables to make a small salad or stir-fry. You also have the joy of knowing that you have grown your own food, and your best friends will be impressed with your industry and self-reliance!
Container gardening is possible even if you do not have a large outside apartment space. Nowadays, the best container gardening often takes place on the window sill, though you might want to obtain permission from your landlord first.
Container gardeners will find it easy to nurture fast flowering annual plants all year, as long as you have a well lit window, and you could also grow some types of food. If you live in close proximity to others and have shared space, it is also possible to have a community garden.
Even when the traditional growing season has finished, you can still carry on your container gardening. This involves choosing plants that are able to withstand a possible frost. Typical plants that people choose are things like Mexican feather grass, lavender cottons, cornflowers, jasmine, million bells, Eulalia grasses and stonecrops.
As you move on through the annual growing season, it is possible to replace out of season plants with those that suit the current weather conditions. There are also many well-respected internet based sources that will give help on designing attractive and satisfying ideas for container gardening.
They will give a lot of help in areas such as ensuring you have the best containers, making sure they’re in good condition, and how to grow eye-catching succulents, roses and bulbs.
Growing An Indoor Herb Garden
An indoor herb garden can add so much to your home, and your life. Having your own fresh herbs is a great way to add some much needed vitamins to your diet, as well as spice up your home cooked meals.
The most important information you will need before deciding to grow your indoor herb garden will be to understand, the different herbs a garden can grow as well as what tastes you’re most interested in. After all, if you have a distaste of rosemary, for instance, then you won’t want to grow rosemary, unless, of course, you want to cut down on fungus in your garden. Then rosemary would be a wise choice.
You see? Knowing the benefits of different herbs is an important first step to gaining the right knowledge for growing herbs.
Herbs for a garden have more than mere cuisine benefits. They have been used for millennia in a plethora of applications including cosmetics and medicinal purposes.
Different herbs have been used in oils and ointments to assist in an array of different ailments, including sore joints, relieving sore throats, and helping the common cold. You’ll find a high level of use for herbs in everyday, as well as specialized, teas.
To get an idea of the variety of herbs that you can grow: There are annual herbs, such as aloe vera, arugula, basil, cayenne, chervil, coriander, dill, and garlic. These are hearty plants that will come back year after year, supplying you with many years of wonderful fragrances and tastes.
Perennial plants, or those that need to be planted from seeds every year include angelica, catnip (and won’t your cat just love you if you planted this herb), Bay Laurel, chives, cornflower, dandelion (yes, dandelion is an herb, not a weed), fennel, ginkgo, ginseng, green tea, lavender, mint, oregano, poppy, rosemary, sage, tarragon, thyme, and more.
Biennials, which grow over two seasons, include angelica, caraway, evening primrose, and parsley. There are many other varieties, but this should give you an idea that you can do wonders with an herb garden at your home.
Growing herbs opens your world to a wonder that monks to homemakers have understood for thousands of years. Reading this list should indicate that nearly every facet of life is surrounded by herbs, and many of our modern health supplements (namely ginkgo), come from these hearty and robust plants.
And growing herbs is relatively simple; you don’t need an advanced degree in agronomics to grow healthy plants. You simply have to have time to tend to their watering, make sure they have sunshine, and occasionally, depending on the plant, add fertilizer or compost as needed.
Making the decision to start your own indoor herb garden will very likely take you down a garden path you won’t fully appreciate until you are on your way. The growing plants will spur your sense of creativity and add to your peace of mind in ways you might not have expected. Learn all you can. That is very important. Then, proceed, and have a wonderful journey.
The Basics Of Growing Growing Bromeliads
More than 3000 different bromeliad species exist. They can be found as far South as Argentina, and throughout the Americas. It is a member of the epiphyte family. This essentially means the plant will grow on other plants, but will not rely on the host plant for its nutrition. Some bromeliad species will grow well in the ground as well.
Ideal Growing Conditions for Bromeliad Plants
Many gardeners feel this plant is difficult to grow and care for because its unique and exotic appearance. Once you understand its basic needs it is not hard to grow.
The plant will do well in temperatures in-between 45 to 90 degrees. They have also been found to thrive in diverse environments, from deserts to mountains. Generally speaking, these plants will do well if grown inside the 45 to 90 degree range. In addition, many bromeliads prefer humidity in the range of 50 to 75%. This makes Central and South Florida ideal locations for growing the plant.
Removing Babies From Mother Plant
Once the plant develops flowers, babies will appear on the mother plant. They should only be removed when they are half the size of the mother plant. At this point you should see newly developed roots on the baby plant base. Now you can remove the new plant and place it in the ground or in container.
An Indicator Your Bromeliad Is Not Doing Well
The bromeliad is a plant that will let you know it is not happy with its living condition. For example, if the leaves begin to appear burned, it is likely receiving too much sun. If it lacks a rich, healthy color, inadequate sunlight may be the cause. The bromeliad is a plant that does not need regular fertilizing. However, if you are starting a new or baby plant, fertilizer will be valuable to new growth.
Bromeliads can be grown indoors or outdoors, in a container or in the ground. They will also grow well in a greenhouse. This plant is easy to grow and care for, and one that’ll will make a great conversation piece.
10 Plants That Are Easy To Grow In Your Indoor Garden
1) Billbergia Nutans
This plant is a Bromeliad from Brazil and is in the same family as the Pineapple. Sometimes known as queen’s-tears, it has rosettes of long narrow leaves; flowers are greenish-yellow and appear in the spring.
These flowers are born on long stems and arch down from pink bracts. They are easy to grow and will tolerate low temperatures. Normal room temperature is recommended positioned in good natural light, but avoid direct sunlight.
Water well in summer, moderately for the rest of the year. Fresh rain water is preferred. Feed occasionally. The plant can be propagated in the spring by means of offsets.
2) Cissus Antarctica
A tough plant from Australia, it belongs to the Vine family, and is known as the Kangaroo Vine. It grows quickly and can achieve 6-10 feet; it supports itself by tendrils or can be trained on bamboo supports.
Produces dark green, shiny leaves on short red leafstalks. This plant likes a cool, light room, out of direct sunshine. Water well in summer allowing it to almost dry out between watering. Water moderately for the rest of the year.
Feed in summer, take cuttings in spring. For a more bushy appearance, occasionally pinch shoot tips.
Ivy plants from Europe, Asia, Africa and the Canary Islands. Hardy climbing and trailing plants, easy to grow in a wide range of temperatures. However, if the room is too warm they will become susceptible to red spider mites. Plenty of water in the summer, less in winter, feed occasionally in summer.
They need a position which will give them at least two or three hours of variegated sunlight a day. Cuttings should be taken in spring or summer and root very easily.
4) Neanthe Bella
Small, slow growing palm with feathery leaves, good for displays. Easily grown, needs well draining compost. A light position but not in full sun light. Water well in spring and summer, sparingly the rest of the year. Occasionally sponge the leaves and watch for insects.
5) Philodendron Scandens
From Tropical America and the West Indies with heart shaped dark green leaves. Easy to grow, climbing house plant. Pinch out the tips to produce a more bushy plant. Site in a bright position out of direct sunlight. Allow the top half-inch of the potting mixture to dry out between moderate waterings.
6) Chlorophytum Elatum Variegatum
Otherwise known as ‘Spider Plant’ from South Africa. Grows green and cream leaves up to 15 inches long and makes a striking hanging plant. Will grow in cool or warm rooms, although it prefers a reasonably warm, humid atmosphere.
Site in a well lit position with some direct sunshine, however, long periods in direct sunshine may scorch the leaves. Water well during summer, moderately during the rest of the year. Feed in summer, repotting in spring.
7) Ficus Pumila Or Creeping Fig
This is a relative of the rubber plant. A fast growing creeping plant, with its tiny heart shaped leaves, and can look stunning. Likes a cool, shady position. To encourage growth, pinch out the tips. Feed in spring and provide good watering. This plant must never be allowed to dry out.
8) Impatiens Sultani
Busy Lizzie (Zanzibar). A very popular flowering plant, perfect for growing in windows. Flowers are bright red, pink or white and are produced through most of the year. Pinch stems to promote bushiness; shoots removed for cuttings will root easily. Fast growing, they like a warm, well lit position. Water well in spring and summer. Keep warm and moist in winter.
9) Saxifraga Sarmentosa. (Japan)
Often known as, mother-of-thousands. Because of its abundant, little plantlets off-spring. Grows to a maximum 9 inches tall, and looks best in a hanging basket or pot with these long runners hanging down. Leaves are an olive green color with purple beneath. Small pink flowers appear in summer.
Position in a well lit but cool room, out of direct sunshine. Water and feed regularly in summer, don’t allow the pot to stand in water. Reduce watering after flowering keeping the mixture just damp.
10) Tradescantia Fluminensis. (South America)
Also known as; Wandering Jew. Easy to grow and very popular hanging plant, produces sliver striped leaves with purple underneath. They will grow in cool rooms but need a well lit position. Occasionally feed in summer, water well and frequently spray the leaves. Pinch out shoot tips if plant becomes straggly. These can be used for cuttings and will easily root in water.