Bring in some colour

Posted on: 23 December 2013 by Gareth Hargreaves

Add some colour to the drab and dark nights with six of the best winter flowering houseplants.

poinsettiaPoinsettia – Winter favourite

The second most popular houseplant in the UK, which is amazing considering they are only sold for around 6 weeks of the year. For a modern twist, look out for colours other than the traditional red – they are available in white, lemon, coral and even bright fuchsia pink.

Schuumbergera ( Christmas Cactus)

This is a wonderfully easy plant to care for and will produce long lasting brightly coloured flowers over the winter period. Whilst cacti aren’t usually known for their love of water, the Christmas cactus is an unusual exception – it loves a light misting every now and again to keep it flowering for longer

Cymbidium OrchidCymbidium Orchid

Orchids are now very easily available and increasingly easy to keep. To maintain the plants in tip-top condition, try lightly misting them every day or so – they will benefit from the additional humidity. Alternatively, place the pot on a saucer filled with wet pebbles and keep topping up the water as the pebbles dry out.

Cyclamen

Likes a bright but cool spot – the sort of temperature where you or I might add an extra layer of clothing! Droopy plants are under-watered and too hot, so keep an eye out as they can get quite thirsty. Water into the plant’s saucer rather than directly into the pot as the plant can be prone to rotting otherwise.

AzaleaAzalea

Perfect for those who are prone to over-watering. Azaleas hate dryness and heat, so keep them cool and well watered - the compost should be damp but not wet at all times. They also like regular misting – but they do hate hard water. If you live in a hard water area use rainwater, filtered water or even cooled boiled kettle water – all will be welcome!

African Violet

As the name suggests, African violets are native to Africa and thrive in dry, slightly arid conditions. They will put up with most things, except over-watering and too much cold. Water into the saucer to avoid getting their furry leaves wet, but don’t worry if you occasionally forget. In fact, if left somewhere warm and dry, they will flower almost indefinitely!

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