Ask a Question forum: New Houseplant Enthusiast!

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May 15, 2016 5:34 PM CST
Hi there,

My name is Isabella and I am a BRAND NEW house plant enthusiast.

I received a small portion, of what I think is a spider plant, as a gift. I never thought of myself as a "green thumb" but I loved caring for it and recently re-repotted ir. As well, I've since purchased a ficus and another mystery small topical plant!

As I mentioned, I'm not sure the name of what I'm referring to as a spider plant and I also am wondering the name of the other plant I bought!

Can anyone identify them?

Another question - I'm confused about when to water my ficus. Some sources say when the soil is dry, while others caution me against allowing the soil to completely dry! Can anyone clear this up?

Thank you!!
Thumb of 2016-05-15/Bellamdwf/fe7fb3
Thumb of 2016-05-15/Bellamdwf/26f973

Name: Cheryl
Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Plumerias Ponds
Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
May 15, 2016 6:14 PM CST
The top photo is indeed a variegated Spider Plant. It looks to be buried a bit too deep. Please check it to see the crown where all the leaves grow out is not under the soil. Soon you will see it put out a shoot full of baby plants. That is why sometimes this is also called Airplane Plant, I think because they look like little airplanes. It like bright shade.

The bottom picture is a Dracena Marginata, Dragon Plant/Tree, a type of Ti Plant. They are drought tolerant and you should let the soil dry out before watering again. They like bright light but not direct sunlight.

My ficus are picky and don't like to be moved. So once you find a good place for it, let it do it's thing and try not to move it too often or you will lose some leaves. Bright shade is what it likes. It does like to be watered, but I find that it likes to be on the dry side between waterings. Welcome! Welcome!
Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.
Name: Jennifer
48036 MI (Zone 6b)
Cottage Gardener Houseplants Spiders! Heucheras Frogs and Toads Dahlias
Hummingbirder Sedums Winter Sowing Peonies Region: Michigan Garden Ideas: Level 2
May 15, 2016 6:17 PM CST
Welcome! Welcome!

Name: Sue Taylor
Northumberland, UK
Charter ATP Member Bookworm Amaryllis Houseplants Annuals Garden Photography
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Foliage Fan Bulbs Bee Lover Frogs and Toads Container Gardener
May 16, 2016 10:57 AM CST
Welcome Isabella! You will get lots of pleasure from your houseplants, and there is lots of advice on here for caring for them. There is a houseplant forum which you might want to follow.

|'d say don't get too discouraged if your plants don't do well at first. These types of houseplants are very common and can be picked up very cheaply, so don't give up. Many people will try to cling onto plants that are past reviving, and a lot of pot plants are sold as 'bunches of flowers in a pot' and are not meant to last forever. Other plants can be handed down for generations though, and you will learn about what conditions you can offer your plants.

Best of luck!
Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

Region: United States of America Deer Region: Florida Charter ATP Member Million Pollinator Garden Challenge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
May 16, 2016 11:01 AM CST
Hi Isabella, Welcome! from me too!

Your first plant is definitely a Chlorophytums (Chlorophytum)

Plant #2 is Madagascar Dragon Tree (Dracaena marginata)

If you post a photo of your Ficus we can probably tell you which one it is and offer advice on watering.
~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~

Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Herbs Annuals Hummingbirder Butterflies Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Birds Cat Lover Houseplants Garden Sages
May 16, 2016 11:12 AM CST
Yes, in the beginning it can be frustrating but do not give up. Start with common, inexpensive, easy to replace plants until you get the hang of it. For many of us the only way to learn the proper way to care for a certain plant is to kill a few first. Probably the reason aspiring doctors get to first work on cadavers. Gene

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