Houseplants: Easiest festive plants to look after including poinsettia – ‘gorgeous’11/12/2021
Gardeners' World: How to care for houseplants
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Festive plants are extremely popular in the UK with supermarkets selling poinsettias every year. Some houseplants may need extra care in the winter, especially if the heating is on indoors.
Experts at GardeningExpress.co.uk have investigated the low maintenance plants to make the perfect Christmas centrepiece.
Chris Bonnett said: “There are some fantastically festive plants and flowers which are easy to care for during the chillier months and will add the spirit of Christmas to any room.
“Many of these blooms also make for beautiful presents, so are worth bearing in mind when buying for green-fingered friends or family members.
“Whilst these varieties are easy to care for, they can be pretty picky with heat and light.
“A windowsill might seem like a good idea, but the temperature really fluctuates in front of the glass in the winter, especially if there’s a radiator underneath.
“Avoid draughts and hot spots near radiators or fires too. Instead, display them somewhere that’s bright yet maintains a steady temperature.”
Festive plants include poinsettia, holly and rosemary as well as Christmas cactus, desert roses and African violets.
Poinsettias, which are widely grown indoors over Christmas, are known for their gorgeous red colour.
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The expert said: “They should only be watered once the compost has begun to dry out.
“Overwatering poinsettias can really damage the plant, instead, regularly misting the plant with a spray bottle is beneficial, especially when flowering.”
According to the expert, rosemary is the most authentic Christmas plant about.
It can be used in cooking as well as a seasoning.
Chris said: “The plant is an attractive evergreen shrub with needle-like leaves, and it is super easy to care for.
“Provide the herb with well-drained, sandy soil and a solid amount of sunlight. These plants thrive in warm, humid environments and should be moved into a cosy spot in the home over the winter months.”
Holly, which is typically used as a decoration throughout the festive period, is used as a symbol of eternal life and fertility.
The expert explained: “Back in the day, people believed that hanging the plant in homes would bring good luck and protection.
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“When grown in the home, holly will thrive in moist soil positioned in slight suntraps.
“However, they aren’t just limited to December along with the decorations, they make a lovely year-round houseplant.”
African violets, which are extremely popular, tend to bloom all year round, giving a continuous display of blooms.
Chris explained: “Whilst these aren’t the easiest plants to look after, they are blooming gorgeous.
“They take up a small amount of space in the home and can make a delightful display when a few are bunched together.
“African violet plants should be watered when the soil doesn’t feel moist with lukewarm or tepid water which has been left to stand for 48 hours.
“These fussy flowers will be well worth the beautiful blooms that come during colder climates.”
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