Grow Flowers Inside
As weather gets less attractive for outdoor gardening, I like to increase my indoor gardening. I enjoy colorful flowering potted plants, especially during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday period.
The chrysanthemum is one of the most rewarding potted flowers. They usually bloom for a month or longer. Pick plants which have some buds which are just starting to open for longer bloom. Mums come in many fall colors which are perfect for this time of year. Yellow, Bronze and Bronzy Red are some of the most appropriate. But if you like white, lavender, and pink shades, those are also available. They also come in a variety of flower types included spider shaped blooms and spoon-like petals.
Another favorite of mine is Kalanchoe, which comes in bright shades of red, orange, yellow and pink. They also bloom for several weeks. Cyclamen, in shades of pink, red and white will also bloom for a long time if you pick plants with unopened buds, often hidden down among the leaves.
Poinsettias are already appearing in stores. The new, long lasting varieties will stay in bloom for 6 weeks or longer if cared for properly. I like to use several plants in a variety of colors and flower types for holiday decoration. Four or more plants of the same kind will make an attractive, tree-like display if you put the center plant on an inverted bowl. Potted azaleas also come in bright Christmas colors.
Orchids are the longest blooming of any plant. They frequently last 3 or 4 months. Although more expensive than other plants, they are cheaper and more readily available than previously. They are less fussy about light conditions.
When potted plants are moved from a bright, sunny greenhouse to a home situation, they use less water, and can be over watered because of water collecting in decorative foil pot covers. By watering plants in the sink with the foil removed, excess water will drain out the bottom. Feel the top of the soil with your finger. If it is still moist, wait another day or two until it dries on top. Orchids are particularly sensitive to overwatering