In this article, we will be discussing what houseplants can be grown in dry atmospheres.
As you may know through reading my articles on houseplants, a lot of them require to be grown in either a moderate or high humidity. If you do not do this the plant will suffer and the leaves may develop brown marks on the tips. If you are one of those people who forget to mist regularly or if you live in a house that is too dry, then this article is for you.
All these plants that I will reveal to you can support a dry atmosphere without looking sad. When I talk about a dry atmosphere I am talking about where the humidity of your home is sufficient to support the plant without any extra moisture required to be added to the air.
ACHIMENES (Cupid’s Bower)
Achimenes are easy houseplants to look after and if you do they will reward you with masses of colourful flowers all summer to early autumn. It is not only the blooms that are attractive but the hairy leaves.
The plant has a habit of becoming leggy as it ages, so you will need to keep pinching out the tips as the stems grow. This will not only keep the plant tide but will encourage side-shoots to form and will keep it bushy. It may need some support to prevent the plant from flopping over.
The flowers are purple and blue. Achimenes like brightly lit conditions but do not sit them in bright sunlight, where it can grow up to 40cm in height. It needs to be watered freely once active growth begins, reducing watering in winter but keeping the compost moist at all times. Feed regularly during the growing season.
This is one of the best-known bromeliads as it produces the fruit we eat. The fruit looks exotic but so does the plant. It has bold, strongly variegated leaves that eventually yields a rising spike of white flowers that lasts for many months. The flower eventually forms a miniature pineapple.
If the conditions are right the flower spike will be produced in late spring to early summer. The fruits are edible but not very tasty. Grow it in warm temperatures in a well-lit area, where it can grow up to 1m high.
Water generously by filling the centre vase of the plant. You must ensure that this never dries out, so you will need to constantly top up the water level in the vase. As this is a short live plant, you will need to propagate regularly any offsets that are produced.
BILBERGIA (Queen’s Tears)
This is the easiest bromeliads to grow and also to bring into flower, and that is the reason why the plant is grown. The leaves are attractive enough but nothing compared to the flowers. They can take lower temperatures down to 7 degree Celsius and so can be kept in cooler rooms.
The plant needs plenty of light but awry from direct sunlight, where it can grow up to 1m in height. It should flower from late spring to late summer as long as you feed once a month once flowering starts. Water via the vase at the centre of the plant, which is common with bromeliads.
Clivias are attractive indoor plants, with its dark green, strappy, arching leaves that emerge from a large bulb. Above these leaves, a giant stem appears bearing flowers of dramatic orange and red.
It is tolerant of many different household growing conditions and it will take a good deal of shade without suffering. They prefer to be grown in good, bright light in average to cool temperatures all year round. Water freely in summer and sparingly in winter.
Feed regularly throughout spring and summer. Does not like to be moved, so let sleeping dogs lie.
CRYPTANTHUS (Earth Star or Starfish Plants)
Unlike many other bromeliads, which tend to grow in trees or rocks, Cryptanthus grows in the ground. The rosettes are flat and will gradually spread, making them ideal ground cover plants.
This is where the descriptive names come about as the resemble stars and starfishes. The leaves are unusually shaped and some variegation does exist. It does flower but they are not that impressive. Grow them in good, bright light at an average temperature. Water Moderately into the central vase and less so in winter. Apply a half-strength balanced liquid fertiliser, when in active growth.
CACTI AND SUCCULENTS
Many succulents and cacti can be grown in dry atmospheres and to find out which I suggest, then you should read my article on the best cacti and succulent to grow as houseplants.
GREVILLEA ROBUSTA (Australian Silky Oak)
This tall 1.5m houseplant with slender green leaves that have a fern-like appearance. Grow it in a cool, airy, bright position, in slight shade. If the growing conditions are met, then this plant can grow to large proportions, but will not do well in a warm, stuffy room.
Pot on the plant when it is required, using ericaceous compost. If the plant becomes too large, they can be cut back, taking on a more bushy appearance. Leaves will be shed if it is extremely chilly.
Water generously on summer, sparingly in winter. Rainwater is preferred, especially if you live in a hard water area.
These are easy to grow as they make extremely good indoor flowering plants.
They are a huge variation in colours and forms; both the colour of the flowers and the colours of the foliage. Some Pelargoniums can flower all year round.
The classic pelargoniums are often grown as an outdoor bedding plant. Regal and Angel Pelargoniums make even better houseplants. They have a good, bushy shape and have even larger, showy and colourful blooms. The Ivy-leaved Pelargoniums are the most elegant with the solid, waxy leaves and trailing habit, making them ideal for hanging baskets.
Pelargonium tends to flower from late spring to midsummer, where at this time they need to be watered well. It is important to allow the compost to almost dry out between watering. Do not overwater these plants as this will cause rotting and other fungal diseases. In summer, keep the plant well ventilated and ideally, you should bring your houseplants outdoors during warm weather. Bring them in, if it gets too cold.
This is one plant that does not like its leaves being misted, but water on leaves can lead to rots and moulds.
In autumn as temperature fall, flowering will decrease and the plant can be dried out and kept almost dry for winter. Cut the plant by half to encourage fresh growth in spring.
If you want the pelargonium to flower throughout winter, you will need to keep plants in a light place and continue to water but less than you would do in summer.
Some geraniums have been bred to encourage leave development, rather than flowers. Many produce pretty flowers but they are insignificant, especially compared with the brightly coloured and shapes of the leaves. They also tend to be smaller in size.
This is an easy indoor plant and it lives up to this reputation. They can withstand droughts and general neglect and can tolerate a range of growing conditions.
Sansevieria have broad, sword-shaped leaves that are mottled in dark and light green that have light green edges. This is the main interest of these erect houseplants. It prefers to be grown in warm but bright, indirect light.
Water and feed normally over summer. In winter, the compost should be kept almost dry or the plant will rot. This is one plant that hates to be re-potted.
Yuccas make a handsome houseplant with their large, sword-like leaves that emerge from a thick trunk. It most certainly makes a bold statement and it is easy to look after, making it an ideal houseplant.
Grow in average to warm temperatures all year round in full sunlight. Water well during the growing season and sparingly in winter. Whilst in active growth, apply a balanced liquid fertiliser once a month. Y. elephantiasis does not have the sharp leaves that other Yuccas have.
In this article, we have discussed what houseplants can flourish in dry atmospheres. A lot of houseplants require moderate to high humidity, but that means misting them or providing artificially high humidity. To some people, this is not practical as you are either away from your home a lot or if it is too much of a chore.
This article addresses this and has come up with a range of plants that can be used. Most seem to be bromeliads and cactus and succulents, but you do have other choices.
You can have beautiful houseplants and dry atmosphere.
If you have any questions or comments you wish to make, please do so in the comment box below.
Do not be left high and dry.