The Q&A Archives: Plants For Classroom

Question: I have a fourth grade classroom and want to have a few plants in my room. There is very little natural light - fluorescent bulbs mainly - and I have no control over the air/heating. What will grow best for me in my room - low light!

Answer: There are only a few foliage plants that will grow under low light conditions, including Aglaonema, Aspidistra, Fittonia, Helxine, Philodendron scandens and Sanseviera, but another idea might be to grow plants in a more favorable environment (at home perhaps) and then put them in the classroom for a few weeks at a time. You could explain to your students the varying light requirements between foliage and flowering plants, and why you allow some plants to visit the classroom for only short periods of time. You might even send a tired plant home with a student with specific instructions for light and water requirements, asking that it be brought back to class in 2-3 weeks to take the place of one that needs remedial help.
The whole process could be quite educational for all involved.

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