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What makes a good houseplant? Bulbine, Correa, Roldana, etc.

12 years ago

I've often wondered about what makes a good houseplant. Clearly, many things can be grown inside, given the proper conditions. But what sorts of plants typically thrive, given a variety of conditions? Can we tell before growing them, or is it all trial and error?

I just divided what one might consider a typical houseplant, Stromanthe sanguinea 'Triostar'. I bought one plant yesterday and now I have nine. I assume this plant outside likes the shade and warm but not hot temperatures. So the fact that it adapts so well to inside is perhaps not surprising. However some plants that like full sun outside do fine inside. Many Ficus species come to mind. Jade plant is another.

Before

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After

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Bulbine frutescens does well in a variety of light conditions outside. I've read that some grow it as a houseplant. Does anyone have any experience with this? Does it bloom?

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I bought a couple odd plants recently:

Roldana (Senecio) petasitis and Correa baeuerlenii. I was told both are shade lovers. Does either stand a chance if tried inside?

Roldana petasitis

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Correa baeuerlenii 'Lemon Drop'

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Or how about Abutilons? I have Abutilon megapotamicum 'Little Imp'. I'm not finding my Abutilon photo now--it's not a particularly good photo.

Anyway, I'm willing to send out Stromanthe plants, Bulbine rooted fans, Correa cuttings (if they root for me), Roldana (when I get seeds). I may be able to send rooted Abutilon cuttings, depending on my supply. I should also be albe to send Kalanchoe 'Pink Butterfles', small rooted plantlets. This likely won't be for a month or two. I would encourage (but not insist) that recipients report back their findings.

I should have about 4 or 5 sets, unless something dies. Probably in exchange for postage.

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