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House Plants - List of Species

A - B    C - D    E - H    I - P    Q - Z


Impatiens (Patient Lucy, Busy-Lizzie, touch-me-not)

These easy-to-grow plants bloom all year round even when light conditions are poor.

Grow in full winter sun, but diffused sunlight during spring and summer; warm temperatures, 18° to 26°C; moderate humidity. Pot in standard soil mix with extra organic matter, keep barely moist; fertilize regularly. Propagate from cuttings, easily grown from seed; plants begin to bloom after three months.

NOTE: Pinch back growing tips to develop compact, bushy growth. Leaves drop at temperatures below 18°C.


Maranta (Prayer plant)

The prayer plant gets its name from the way it folds its leaves at night, to look like hands in prayer. It grows well in a terrarium or bottle garden.

Grow in diffused sunlight; warm temperatures, 23° to 29° high humidity. Pot in standard potting soil; keep evenly moist, except in winter, when soil should dry between waterings; do not let water stand in crowns, as the stems rot easily. Propagate by division in spring.

Monstera (Swiss Cheese Plant)

Monstera is often confused with the split-leaved philodendron, and is sometimes sold under the name Philodendron pertusum. Both are hardy, easy-to-grow house plants, enduring low light, a wide range of temperatures, dust and draught and low humidity.

Grow in diffused sunlight or daylight; warm temperatures, 23° to 29° moderate humidity. Pot in standard soil mix; extra organic matter is desirable; keep barely moist. Needs a large pot. Propagate from stem cuttings; stem sections; air-layering.

NOTE: Monstera produces aerial roots. The plant grows better if these are led down into the soil, or trained to grow into a totem (moss-covered pole). Leaves turn brown if exposed to drafts and fluctuating temperatures. If plant grows too tall, cut back hard.



Palms make elegant tub plants for large rooms, offices and patios. Most varieties are well adapted to indoor cultivation, and will not grow too large under household conditions if kept in large pots.

They will stand direct sun, but prefer indirect light; moderate temperatures 20° to 30°C; moderate to high humidity - dry air causes leaf browning. Pot firmly in organic soil; keep soil evenly moist. Keep leaves clean. They can remain in the same pot for several years if fed occasionally and top-dressed once a year. Propagate from seed in moist heat; air-layering division.

Phoenix dactylifera  (Date Palm) This palm is a large growing specimen while dwarf members of the same genus Phoenix canariensis and Phoenix roebelenii prefer cool, airy conditions. Phoenix roebelenii is a durable house plant and seldom grows over three feet (one m) in height. They are often grown in dish gardens and terrariums in indirect sunlight, warmth and moist soil.

Kentia palms are the easiest to cultivate. They can grow very tall.

Neanthe palms are small and graceful, highly adaptable to household conditions tolerating low light. They are often used in dish gardens or terrarium arrangements.

Pelargonium (Geranium)

Many varieties of geraniums make excellent house plants.

Grow in full sunlight; at least four hours of direct sunlight; cool temperatures 15° to 20°C; Low to medium humidity. Pot in standard potting mix with extra sand for drainage let dry between watering. Fertilize regularly in summer. Grows well on balcony or patio in summer.

Leaf and stem cuttings root quickly in sandy rooting medium.

NOTE: Plants flower best if kept in a pot-bound state.


Low-growing house plants, adaptable to cool conditions and dim light if not overwatered. Excellent for bottle gardens and terrariums.

Grow in bright, diffused sunlight; warm temperatures 23° to 29°C; moderate humidity. Pot in standard potting soil; allow to dry between waterings as stems are prone to rot. Propagate easily from stem and leaf petiole cuttings.


A common house plant because of its ability to tolerate drought, dust, dim light, dry air and neglect. They can be climbers or non-climbers; the climbing varieties produce aerial roots which can be rooted in moss by training them up a totem; the non-climbers will need additional support by pinning them to a stake inserted in the back of the pot when they get large.

Grow in indirect sunlight during July and August - direct sunlight scorches foliage; warm temperatures, 20° to 26°C; moderate to high humidity. Pot in organic soil; keep moist; can be grown in water. Keep leaves clean. Propagate from cane sections; leaf stem cuttings; air-layering seed.

NOTE: If plant becomes too tall or leggy, cut back to force branching. Brown, cracked leaves are a result of neglect or extremely bad conditions. Split-leaf philodendrons will not split in poor light.

Pilea (Aluminum plant, Artillery plant)

Small, compact house plants ideal for terrariums and bottle gardens.

Grow in moderate daylight or diffused sunlight; warm temperatures, 23° to 29°C; high humidity. Pot in standard potting soil; keep evenly moist. Drought and dryness cause leaf spot. Young plants are more attractive. Propagate from stem.





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