House Plants

Whilst we’ve had almost constant rain, I’ve not managed to get much done outside. Even when it’s not been raining, everything is sodden. So, being indoors set me looking at our indoor houseplants.

Christmas Cactus in Flower

Superb display from our Christmas Cactus

Sadly we don’t have much space for houseplants in our home, just two window sills that are deep enough and they face to the west. Our previous house was modern and much better equipped for window space. Oh well, you can’t have everything.

Feeding our Houseplants

Anyway, we’ve been feeding those house plants we do have with S-Chelate 12-Star fertiliser and getting some amazing results, especially considering the low level of natural light in the house. It’s an old property built with smaller windows – saving on expensive glass, the stone from the fields being free.

In the past we’ve just fed our houseplants with a liquid houseplant fertiliser. The problem with house plants sitting in the same compost is that micro-nutrients get used up. Standard houseplant fertilisers cover the NPK macro-nutrients but not the micro-nutrients and trace elements. S-Chelate contains the full range of main and micro-nutrients and the effects are noticeable with increased growth.

The Christmas Cactus has increased its size by half in a year and I had to move it into a larger pot last month. It’s just starting to flower and I’ve never seen it looking so good.

Barrel Cactus showing offsets or pups

Barrel Cactus showing offsets or pups

Barrel Cacti

The spiky barrel cacti (OK, I admit it. I don’t know the proper name.) flowered spectacularly earlier in the year. Now I’ve a dilemma, they’ve grown lots of offsets or pups as they’re sometimes called.

I could plant these up, best done in the spring but we don’t need any more of them. This made me wonder if I could pot them up and give them to a charity shop to sell.

Of course I could just remove and compost them but that waste goes against the grain.

Cactus Flower

One day only – but what a day! – 2nd July 2023

Mother in Law's Tongue Houseplant

Our Mother in Law’s Tongue – like me, getting on a bit but still going,

Mother in Law’s Tongue

In the lounge we’ve a Mother in Law’s Tongue aka Snake Plant Sansevieria trifasciata. It was a gift from Val’s dad and we’ve had it for over 40 years. It’s a plant that thrives on neglect, so it does well us!

Over the years it’s grown, filled the pot, been split into two or more and re-potted. Usually we give the excess plants away or just compost the unused shoots.

I’ve not really given it any thought in the past but I happened to be in a garden centre the other day. They had some Mother in Law’s Tongues for sale. They were about a quarter of the size of our plant, maybe less, and going for £29.95.

Come the spring our plant is going to need splitting so I’m thinking I really need to find a charity shop that will take the extras. For the cost of a pot and a bit of potting compost I can help a charity. They might be able to turn my pennies into a few pounds. Fingers crossed!

Posted in Allotment Garden Diary
4 comments on “House Plants
  1. Jenny Henson says:

    Overwintered house plants can really flourish if put outside for the summer. They can used as part of a bedding scheme or in baskets. My spider plants rejuvenate and thrive outside. Outside for summer then back indoors for winter.

  2. Jacqueline Godrich says:

    I put the Christmas cactus and the cyclamen out over the summer in a shaded spot feeding as needed with tomato feed, the blossoms are absolutely amazing this year ( plants are now on the kitchen window inside )

  3. Allan says:

    I put my Christmas cactus outside in 2022. Spent the whole winter clearing caterpillar droppings off the window cill and trying to find the culprits. Didn’t put it out this year and it didn’t flower very well.

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