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When you hear “easy house plants” you might not immediately think to include flowers. You might have even heard tragic and frustrating tales about orchids or other extremely particular flowering plants that require meticulous maintenance and a green thumb. However, there are a wide variety of flowering plants you can successfully grow indoors with basic care.
Here are three beginner-friendly flowering house plants to try out:
African violets are compact, vibrant low-growing plants that can bloom several times a year and are popular for their intense colors. Bright purple, blue and pink are most common, but there are also red and white varieties and hybrid hues. They have round, fuzzy and rich green leaves and are comfortable to grow in small pots less than 8-inches.
While African violets are extremely popular house plants, they also have a reputation for being difficult to care for. In reality, it’s easy for this brightly colored plant to thrive indoors as long as you follow a few simple rules. The most important factor in caring for African violets is watering them the correct way. The leaves are highly susceptible to rot if they come into contact with water. To avoid this, plant them in a pot with a water reservoir that will allow you to water from the bottom.
African violets thrive in bright but indirect light and do particularly well under fluorescent lights when indoors. Use a well-drained potting mix in combination with your careful watering and you’ll be able to enjoy this beautiful plant with relatively low maintenance.
Bromeliads are another flowering plant with a reputation for being difficult because of their unusual appearance. Looks can be deceiving: this exotic-looking tropical plant is actually extremely easy to care for indoors. Bromeliads come in countless different species, but the ones that you’ll encounter as house plants have tall, spikey flowers that grow on top of a stalk of green. They come in a variety of colors and sometimes even have spots or stripes on the leaves and blooms.
One thing that makes flowering bromeliads a great choice of indoor plant is that they can easily tolerate a wide range of temperatures. They also like bright indirect sunlight, but if you don’t have a perfect window, they can thrive under fluorescent lights. The key to a healthy bromeliad is humidity, but that doesn’t mean you have to water it frequently. In fact, bromeliads can do well with very infrequent watering as long as the soil can drain properly.
Humidity is extremely important, so if you use a dehumidifier in your home, try to keep your bromeliad in another room. Mist your bromeliad frequently to help the plant stay moist — the cup-shaped leaves help the plant hold on to excess moisture, allowing it to go longer in-between waterings.
Begonias are popular bedding plants for outdoor gardens, but can also make excellent indoor plants. Both the leaves and the blooms of this plant come in many varieties of color and formations — in fact, some begonias are popular specifically for their attractive leaf patterns. Along with the myriad aesthetic differences, there are also some key differences in requirements when it comes to water, soil and temperature. Look for fibrous or rhizomatous begonias as the best choice for growing indoors.
Begonias need indirect light and plenty of humidity. However, they are extremely prone to root rot if you over-water them. The best way to strike a balance is to set your begonia on a shallow tray or container with gravel or pebbles and water. The gradual evaporation of the water from the gravel mixture will help keep the plant at a comfortable humidity level without risk of drowning it. This is especially important if you live in a parched climate or if you use a dehumidifier in your home.
Like African violets and bromeliads, begonias can provide your indoor spaces with beautiful blooms most of the year. Even when not in bloom, their attractive leaves still make for great aesthetic appeal. As long as you are careful not to over-water, you can fill your home with color with relatively low maintenance.