Houseplants forum: Foliage or Flowers?

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Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
Perpetually happy!
Forum moderator Tip Photographer I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Critters Allowed Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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threegardeners
Aug 6, 2011 11:14 AM CST

Moderator

What do you look for in a houseplant?

I love flowers in the dead of w*i*n*t*e*r but I also choose plants with cool foliage to look at when they aren't blooming.

What do you look for when choosing a houseplant?
Ontario, Canada (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Container Gardener Enjoys or suffers cold winters Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids
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Steven
Aug 7, 2011 10:00 PM CST
Usually flowers, and if they have nice foliage when not blooming its a bonus. 90% of my plants are flowering.
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Aug 8, 2011 12:01 PM CST
Like most, I love pretty blooms, and if they are fragrant I love em' even more ... but I also adore variegated foliage!
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Ontario, Canada (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Container Gardener Enjoys or suffers cold winters Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids
Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Canadian Roses Seed Starter Tropicals Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Steven
Aug 8, 2011 1:24 PM CST
Yes, fragrance is something I look out for too!
Name: Nan Washburn
SW Wisconsin, US (Zone 4b)
NanW
Aug 15, 2011 11:04 AM CST
I am, indeed, a 'foliage fanatic'.
Name: Carey
Austin, TX (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Dog Lover Container Gardener Tropicals Roses
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careyana
Aug 16, 2011 2:01 PM CST
Um...yes please? I can't decide! Bonus if they have both. Smiling Big Grin
Name: Christine
Saugerties, NY zone 5a
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Christine
Aug 16, 2011 2:33 PM CST
I prefer the foliage since the flowers dont last long enough for me Smiling
Carey has the right answer I agree
Name: Laurie Basler
Western Washington (Zone 7b)
Houseplants Region: Pacific Northwest Sedums Orchids
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lauriebasler
Jul 19, 2016 8:23 PM CST
I love texture and shape for some reason.
Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
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sallyg
Jul 19, 2016 8:29 PM CST
Foliage. Don't like the fuss of flowers falling off indoors.
..come into the peace of wild things..-Wendell Berry
Life is a buffet (anon)
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
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purpleinopp
Jul 20, 2016 11:21 AM CST
I never go looking for a particular plant, just to browse to see what they have. When I see one I like to look at that I don't already have, I get it if I don't recognize the name as one that I already know wouldn't do well in the conditions I have. Anyone who sends a non humidity loving plant to AL for sale should be given a time-out... in the humidity!

It's always a thrill to find something after all these years, either mysteriously old or new by both sight and name. If I'm looking for anything in particular, it's only as specific as seeing something for the first time, especially if it was in an old house plant book but one I've never seen for sale, or something so common in old movies but not in person, like Rhaphidophora tetrasperma (mini Monstera.) Someday!
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Name: Tara
NE, Florida (Zone 9a)
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terrafirma
Jul 20, 2016 11:35 AM CST
purpleinopp said: Anyone who sends a non humidity loving plant to AL for sale should be given a time-out... in the humidity!


Hilarious! I agree completely! Hilarious! Same goes for Fl. Hilarious!

I look for interesting foliage, unless it's an orchid...Then the bloom is also a must! Fragrance is always an added benefit!
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
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gasrocks
Jul 20, 2016 1:13 PM CST
Foliage it has all the time, blooms are only sometimes. If at all. Gene
Name: Ibis
Florida, Orlando-ish (Zone 9b)
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IbisFla
Jul 20, 2016 2:30 PM CST
Yep, foliage for me too. I'm not always successful with flowers Rolling my eyes.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
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purpleinopp
Jul 20, 2016 4:25 PM CST
Some plants I keep around only for their reliable blooms, like Kalanchoe blossfeldiana & houghtonii. The foliage isn't much to look at, but the flowers are stunning, show up readily inside during winter, and last a long time. They really put holiday cacti to shame in that regard. I'm not much attracted to that foliage either, or that of many epiphytic jungle cacti like Selenicereus and Epiphyllums. But if they ever bloom though, it will have all been worth it, every sweaty watering, repotting, moving of a heavy pot.

Billbergia is another one like that. The foliage just looks like some kind of weird grass. But when a bloom shows up, it's time to ooooh and aaaah.

Amaryllis. Foliage from almost any kind of bulb is a real snooze. More "giant grass" appearance.

I don't keep Callisia fragrans around because it's attractive, and even when it blooms, the flowers could be easily over looked. That one's all about sniffing the tiny, inconsequential looking blooms.

👀😁😂 - SMILE! -☺😎☻☮👌✌∞☯🐣🐦🐔🐝🍯🐾
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☕👓 The only way to succeed is to try.
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Cinta
Jul 29, 2016 8:21 PM CST
My eye finds foliage. All flowers seem to be the same just different colors. They are there for awhile and then they are gone. But a beautiful foliage plant is every day all year.

Second is if it is fragrant. Fragrant is worth the few days, week, month to take up space in the house.
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
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gasrocks
Jul 29, 2016 10:29 PM CST
How about aromatic foliage? I have several house plants that have aromatic foliage. Alpina Nutans is one. Gene
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
Perpetually happy!
Forum moderator Tip Photographer I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Critters Allowed Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Keeps Goats Keeper of Poultry Frogs and Toads Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian
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threegardeners
Aug 2, 2016 6:43 AM CST

Moderator

Aromatic foliage is a bonus!
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
Bulbs Foliage Fan Tropicals Butterflies Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents
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purpleinopp
Aug 20, 2016 3:31 PM CST
As colorful as any flowers. All stuff that's not hardy here, saved inside for winter.
Thumb of 2016-08-20/purpleinopp/0781f8

So many shades of green.
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Thumb of 2016-08-20/purpleinopp/a8865d
Thumb of 2016-08-20/purpleinopp/0e0556

Foliage that's like a giant flower.
Bright yellow/green Dracaena
Thumb of 2016-08-20/purpleinopp/83ea36
Pink Cryptanthus
Thumb of 2016-08-20/purpleinopp/3c1e3c
Neoregelia



👀😁😂 - SMILE! -☺😎☻☮👌✌∞☯🐣🐦🐔🐝🍯🐾
🍀👒☀🍄🍍🌱🌿🌴🎄👣🌵🌷⚘🌹🌻🌽🏡🍃🍂🌾🌿🍁❦❧ 🍃🍁🍂🌾🌻🌺🌸🌼🌹🌳🌲
☕👓 The only way to succeed is to try.
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Cinta
Aug 21, 2016 3:47 PM CST
@purpleinopp
That is a perfect example of the plants that make me smile in the winter. They are as pretty as a flower and it is constant. I think the only flowers I have in the winter are Armarylis, Cane Begonias and the Orchids I pick up in the winter that promptly die the next year. But the orchids usually stay in bloom for 3=4 months by then it is Spring. Hilarious!

This is my favorite because it does not mind shade and it seems to be happier in the house. I take it outside every summer but it does better inside in the winter.
Stromanthe Sanguinea Tri-color
Thumb of 2016-08-21/Cinta/3d61f5

The other plant that does better inside than outside is this one. FIRE-FLASH -- CHLOROPHYTUM ORCHIDANTHEROIDES
Thumb of 2016-08-21/Cinta/0a4de9
Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
Charter ATP Member Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Mid-Atlantic Composter Region: Maryland Birds
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sallyg
Aug 22, 2016 6:35 AM CST
Speaking of better inside than out, reminded me of Streptocarpus. That's a bloomer I love. I had them under a light shelf in fall, they grew great and set lots of buds, then I moved it to my bedroom where each flower lasts a long time, and the total display even longer. But I killed them by putting them out in summer- too hot.
I have a hard time keeping a few plants inside in summer when everything else is out and that's where all my focus is.
..come into the peace of wild things..-Wendell Berry
Life is a buffet (anon)

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