Tuesday, August 14, 2012

5 Must Have Blooming Houseplants

Lately, I have had fall and winter on the brain.
Im more than ready for some cooler temperatures.
This summer hadn't really been all that bad except for the latter part. 
It seems to rain everyday and I have been forced to be inside more than I like. 
This afternoon I was in the yard watering plants and doing a bit of weeding. 
With the hopes for cooler weather I couldn't help but think of my favorite indoor plants and what joy they bring when they bloom. 

Im sharing today my favorite houseplants that bloom through the winter months.

African Violets

African Violets (botanically known as Saintpaulia ionanthaare my favorite of any houseplant. In my opinion, they are the easiest plant to keep alive. 
They are so easy to care for and are ever rewarding if you take care of them properly. They bloom all year.
There are many different varieties and forms, some have variegated foliage, ruffled or even white-edged blooms.
They love warm conditions and filtered sunlight.
Avoid getting water on the leaves as this will cause them to turn brown. (cold water causes brown spots also)

*If you are a green thumb, you can also snap a leaf off of the violet and place in some moist soil to take root.

Christmas Cactus

Another one of my favorite indoor plants is the Christmas Cactus. (botanically known as Schlumbergera or Zygocactus).They bloom at Christmas and sometimes around Easter if cared for correctly.In fall, keep the plant in a sunny, cool, frost-free location until you see flower buds beginning to develop.Right before the holidays you can watch this plant transform like an ugly caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly.
Most Christmas Cactus sold today are a only a closely related species sometimes called Thanksgiving cactus, because it usually blooms a few weeks earlier than Christmas cactus.
Regardless, These plants are beautiful and make a grand statement during the holidays.

Kaffir Lily

Better known as Clivia. ( botanically known as Clivia miniata in the Amaryllidaceae family)
It is generally a slow grower.
The plant will eventually become quite large, standing nearly 2 feet tall. It is a native of South Africa.
 As a houseplant it usually blooms in winter with clusters of up to 20 reddish orange or yellow tubular flowers.
 It blooms only when it has been exposed to cool, dry conditions, so give it lower temperatures in winter and keep it dry.
 With its deep green leaves aligned in a single plane, the plant is attractive even when not in bloom. 

*A word of caution, in many parts of Africa (especially South Africa), the term “Kaffir” is considered extremely offensive, used to denote people of African origin.


Few geraniums are grown as houseplants. 
Regal or Martha Washington geranium, has larger, prettier blooms, but require cool growing conditions. 
The common garden geranium (P. x hortorum), and ivy geranium (P. peltatum), also offer showy flowers but on easier-growing plants. 
Most scented geraniums are grown primarily for their deeply divided, fragrant foliage rather than their flowers, which are insignificant.
Outdoors, they are used as annual bedding plants, in hanging baskets, pots and in window boxes. 
Indoors, they are cultured as houseplants in sunny locations.

Rieger Begonia

Rieger begonia (Begonia hiemalis)is one of the winter-blooming begonias. 
It has fibrous roots with a swollen tuber-like base. 
Clusters of camellia-like blossoms in warm colors ranging from yellow to orange and red appear on top of glossy green foliage. 
Rieger begonia looks good as a tabletop plant or in a hanging basket.

Most all of the plants I have listed are winter bloomers. This being that you can have all the colorful blooms outside all spring-summer but when winter comes everything dies. How nice to have something inside to warm our hearts through those cold winter months!

What are your favorite houseplants?

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