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Q. My ficus seems to drop leaves all year round. Is there anything wrong?
A. It is normal for a Ficus Tree to drop some leaves. The causes for dropping leaves are many, including a change in the environment, incorrect watering, too little light, pests or a fungus.

Q. Once my Peace Lily blooms, is there any reason I can't cut the flower out?
A. No - and it's a good idea to take them out. The white hooded blooms of the Peace Lily can be enjoyed for weeks or months. When the blooms start to decolor, you then can remove by cutting. Leaving the flowers on for an extended period takes energy away from the plant and causes new leaves to be smaller.

Q. The leaf ends of my Peace Lily are turning brown. Should I cut them off?
A. Yes, but when you trim them, leave a small edge of brown tissue. This provides a barrier to help prevent further damage of healthy tissue.

Q. When should I bring my patio plants in?
A. Before the first frost appears, move your patio plants in. Bring them in, in two stages. First transfer them for a short period of time into your garage (or another protected space) so that the plants ease into their new environment. The next step is to bring them into the house.

Q. How much sun and how much water does my orchid need?
A. Orchids thrive in bright light, but not in direct sunlight. Water them thoroughly once or twice a week, more when it is warmer, less when it is cooler. Utilize good drainage and never leave orchids sitting in water.

Q. Should I forget about attempting to get my poinsettia to re-bloom?
A. Getting poinsettias to re-bloom is not an easy task. We suggest that you nurture and enjoy them during the season and replace them when you are ready. We can help you determine which plants are right for your environment.

Q. How often should I repot my houseplants?
A. If your plant wilts between normal watering, or if the roots protrude from the drainage holes or the plant shows little or no growth, it is probably time to re-pot. Typically, young and fast-growing plants need re-potting every six months, older ones every few years.

Q. My office doesn't have a lot of natural light. Will plants thrive with artificial light?
A. Yes. There are a number of plants that will do just fine, although they may not grow as quickly. We would suggest you try Pothos, Heart Leaf Philodendrons, Snake Plants, or Peace Lilies. Indoor plants under artificial lights don't require as much water or fertilizer. If you have the option, keep a low wattage lamp on all night, or keep your plant under a lamp during the day. You might even have success with a night light or a clip on light. 10-12 hours of light (even just a little light) is ideal.

Q. How frequently do I need to fertilize my annuals during the summer months?
A. This really depends upon the type of fertilizer you are using. We would recommend that you follow the directions on your fertilizer.

Q. Do I need to fertilize my house plants? How often?
A. Frequency of fertilizer application varies with the vigor and age of each plant. Houseplants should only be fertilized during periods of active growth. Plants in low light will not need as much fertilizer. Plants grown under less than 200 foot candles benefit little from fertilization and may actually be harmed. Houseplants in bright light will need more fertilizer. Fertilize monthly in the spring and summer and only two or three times in the fall and winter. Never fertilize when the soil is dry.

Q. Should I be watering my houseplants from the top or should they sit in a saucer?
A. We like watering houseplants from the bottom. Water thoroughly every time you water. Apply enough water to moisten the entire soil volume, plus a little extra. Indoor plants are usually placed in saucers to hold excess water that drains from the bottom of the pot. If the plant is left standing in this water root rot, salt injury, and generally poor plant performance can be expected. Discard any water in the saucer after each watering. One way to do this is to spread a layer of gravel in the bottom of the saucer deep enough to keep the bottom of the container out of the water.

 

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