When I was growing up in Brigham City, Utah—before my wise old grandmother adopted me—my first grade teacher, Mrs. Larsen, lived next door. She had beautiful gardens full of tulips, daffodils, and nasturtiums. One day when I was sick, I went over to her yard and destroyed most of her gardens. This was when I was in third grade, though. Since I was always visiting her gardens, she was pretty sure who had done the damage. I’m pretty sure I paid for my transgression but I really don’t remember the punishment. What I do remember is how Mrs. Larsen handled the situation. She never held it against me, maybe figuring that I was still a child. She even invited me to help her replant her gardens, and my mom approved, figuring it was only appropriate. That was the beginning of my love for Mother & Father Nature, plants and gardening, and nice people. My wise old grandmother continued instilling in me that kind of love.
I often get asked about the plants in my own garden, especially plants in my home. I admit that I do have a green thumb. In this post, then, I want to present to you several plants that do extremely well in our homes, where the humidity is lacking and the air can be overly cool in the summer or overly hot in the winter.
First is the Sansevieria, many of which are simply labeled as “mother-in-law’s tongue” or “snake plant” at the stores. They come in both tall and dwarf varieties:
The tall varieties make excellent corner plants or accent plants. The dwarf varieties make great table or counter plants.
The spider plant—also known as airplane plant—Chlorophytum comosum, also is extremely easy to grow, and it has the advantage of giving you billions and billions and billions of baby plants. Just pick the airplane plant at the tip of the shoots off of the plant and lay it on top of some soil. It will develop roots and start growing. Makes a great hanging basket, inside or out, sun or shade, moist or dry.
Lastly, most ivies make excellent house plants because they can take overwatering or no watering, hot and dry or cold and humid. I specifically recommend English ivy (Hedera helix), golden pothos (Epipremnum aureum ‘Golden Queen’), and any of the Philodendrons known as heartleaf philodendron or heartleaf ivy (P. cordatum, P. scandens).
Her plant was a cutting taken from her mother’s plant in 1930 when my grandmother’s first son, my dad, was born.
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