Potted House Plants

Successfully growing potted house plants is a matter of matching the right plant with the light, temperature and humidity levels in the room where they will grow. Take into consideration the level of care you can give your potted houseplants. Some of the most popular house plants thrive under a variety of growing conditions and neglect, making it possible for the most inexperienced grower to have a happy outcome.

Jade Plant (Crassula ovata)

Jade plants are native to South Africa, where they grow as wild shrubs reaching nine feet in height. Many members of the Crassula family are grown as house plants; various plants may have different shaped leaves or variegated colors. Jade plants are succulents; they need indirect sun and light watering. They are easy to propagate from stem or leaf cuttings. Jade plants will grow outdoors in the summer, but make sure they have partial protection from the direct sun. They can easily become scorched or sunburned. Discolored brown stems and leaves, or rotted stems a few days after the scorching are typical symptoms.

Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)

Pothos (Epipremnum aureum) is a versatile vine plant that is used as a trailing potted house plant and as a climbing plant when supports are provided. The leaves are heart-shaped, and they may be different shades of green with variegations ranging from light green to yellow to white. Pothos is often used in spacious indoor landscaping in malls and large buildings. It has a capacity for cleaning toxins from the air, and it is often included in indoor plantings for that reason. Light and water requirements are moderate, so pothos is easy to care for. Propagate pothos from stem or leaf cuttings, or allow the vines to root where they touch the soil.

Wandering Jew (Zebrina pendula)

A native of Mexico, wandering Jew (Zebrina pendula) is at home in a hanging basket or any pot where it can roam. The vines grow quickly, and may be trimmed back to promote bushiness. Save the vine cuttings and use them to propagate more plants by rooting them in moist perlite. The leaves of wandering Jew are striking. They are striped with shiny silver, purple and green on top. The undersides are deep red-violet. Place this plant in a sunny window. Wandering Jew grows well in a range of normal household temperatures, tolerates low humidity, and needs only enough water to keep the soil moist. It enjoys occasional misting. A bonus is that the wandering Jew has pretty little white flowers seasonally.

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About this Author

Fern Fischer writes about quilting and sewing, and she professionally restores antique quilts to preserve these historical pieces of women's art. She also covers topics of organic gardening, health, rural lifestyle, home and family. For over 35 years, her work has been published in print and online.