House Plants

Christmas cactus (Schlumbergera)

The Best Indoor Plants for Dry Climates

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Growing houseplants in dry climates can be challenging. These areas have low humidity and dry air, factors that accelerate wilting. However, with hardy varieties, you can beautify your space with healthy-looking greenery.

Nick’s Garden Center highlights top ideas for choosing the best houseplants for dry climates. We have also suggested various houseplants that flourish in Denver’s dry weather.

Factors to Consider For Indoor Houseplants in Dry Climates

Not every drought-resistant houseplant survives in Denver. So before you buy, make sure the plants you are considering are adapted to this region’s specific humidity, temperature and light conditions.

  • Light requirements. Denver gets over 300 days of sunshine. For this reason, sun-loving houseplants thrive better than low-light varieties.
  • Watering Needs. The dry air in Denver makes soil lose a lot of moisture in a short time. So you need a houseplant adapted to drought.
  • Humidity Preferences. As in most arid areas, humidity is often low in Denver. Thus, the right plants should probably have succulent, waxy leaves to reduce moisture loss.
  • Temperature Tolerance. Summer temperatures are often high, while winters are cold. A good houseplant should be able to withstand these fluctuations.

Best Indoor Houseplants For Dry Climates

Denver’s seemingly harsh climate might make you think you have fewer options for hardy houseplants. However, that’s not the case. There are plenty of options, including succulents, low-maintenance and air-purifying varieties.

Here are the top plants you’d want to add to your collection:

1. Drought-tolerant Succulents

Drought-resistant succulents have fleshy leaves and stems that store water for later use. These plants can go for several days without watering. Some of the leading succulents that do well in Denver homes are:

  • Aloe Vera
  • Snake Plant (Sansevieria)
  • Zebra Cactus (Haworthia)
  • Jade Plant (Crassula ovata)

2. Low-Maintenance Cacti

Low-maintenance cacti have thick, fleshy stems and leaves that retain water. This variety is very resistant to neglect and drought. With their distinctive shapes, cacti will also add a touch of natural elegance to your space.

Some great low-maintenance cacti for your home include:

  • Bunny Ears Cactus (Opuntia microdasys)
  • Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera)
  • Ball Cactus (Parodia magnifica)
  • Barrel Cactus (Echinocactus grusonii)

3. Resilient Desert Plants

Desert plants are a great choice if you want to bring a touch of dry wilderness into your home. Since they are adapted to the desert climate, these plants save you the trouble of regular watering.

Some of the most popular desert plants at Nick’s Garden are:

  • Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)
  • Desert Rose (Adenium obesum)
  • Yucca (Yucca spp.)
  • Crown of Thorns (Euphorbia milii)

4. Air-Purifying Plants

You have many hardy varieties to choose from if you are a fan of air-purifying houseplants. These plants help filter pollutants, allergens, and toxins, promoting respiratory health. Some of the best air-purifying plants available at our Denver garden include:

  • Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
  • Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
  • Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata)
  • Dracaena (Dracaena spp.)

5. Aesthetic Foliage Plants

From plants with lush foliage to those with intricate patterns, you can always find a variety that fits your aesthetic. The foliage plants can tolerate Denver’s low humidity, fluctuating temperatures, and dry air well. The top varieties in this category include:

  • Prayer Plant (Maranta leuconeura)
  • Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema)
  • Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)
  • Philodendron (Philodendron spp.)

Caring For Indoor Houseplants in Dry Climates

Many houseplants for dry climates are often low maintenance. However, you’ll still have to maintain the plants occasionally. Assuming you don’t know how to keep these plants in top shape, use the following ideas:

  • Watering Techniques. When watering your plants, be sure to soak the entire root zone. Water the plants whenever the top 1 inch of soil dries out.
  • Choosing the Right Soil. Houseplant compost is the best soil for your hardy plants. It contains essential nutrients that promote healthy and vigorous growth.
  • Providing Adequate Drainage. Use pots with drainage holes to allow excess water to escape. Furthermore, you can improve drainage by mixing your soil with coarse sand.
  • Controlling Temperature and Humidity. Do not place your houseplants near windows or heating vents. You can also use a humidifier to increase your indoor humidity levels.
  • Fertilizing. Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer to nourish your houseplants. Before fertilizing, moisten the soil to avoid burning the roots.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

When caring for your houseplants, you should do so with care. Otherwise, you could expose the plants to problems like root rot, wilting, and fungal infections. In particular, try to avoid the following common mistakes:

  • Overwatering. Overwatering can lead to root rot and fungal diseases.
  • Under watering. Like many other plants, your houseplants need adequate water. Otherwise, your plants may wither and eventually dry up.
  • Pest Infestations. Uncontrolled pests will damage the plant’s foliage, stems, and roots.
  • Nutritional Deficiencies. Nutrient deficiency results in stunted growth, browning of leaves, and reduced flowering or fruiting.

Learn More About the Best Indoor Plants in Denver

A variety of hardy houseplants flourish in Denver’s semi-arid conditions. These include succulents, cacti, air cleaners, and ornamentals. You can get all these varieties at Nick’s Garden Center, Denver’s premier nursery.

Contact us to discover the right indoor plants for your home.

Houseplant Dracaena Fragrans Dragon

4 Significant Health Benefits of House Plants

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Houseplants not only add charm to your home, but also reduce the risk of some conditions like allergies, high blood pressure, and depression. Likewise, indoor plants can lift your mood and speed recovery.

Our full-service garden in Denver, Nick’s, explains the health benefits of houseplants in detail. We’ve also highlighted top ornamental plants that refresh your home, alongside providing various wellness benefits.

The Air Purifiers

During photosynthesis, indoor plants release oxygen into your space. This boost of oxygen increases your respiratory function and cognitive performance. Furthermore, oxygen from your indoor plants improves your sleep quality.

There are many varieties to choose from when it comes to oxygenating houseplants. The most popular are the snake plant, Boston fern, and areca palm. Weeping figs and golden pothos are also efficient in replenishing your indoor oxygen.

Houseplants also absorb pollutants like benzene and formaldehyde from the air. These pollutant-absorbing plants reduce the risk of persistent headaches and respiratory complications.

Some great house plant species known for absorbing pollutants and toxins include:

  • Peace lily
  • Spider plant
  • Bamboo palm
  • Lady palm
  • Dracaena
  • Ficus Alii

Stress Relief and Mental Well-Being

Mental Health links spending time in nature with improved emotional and psychological health. Your houseplants serve the same purpose as nature. They promote relaxation and help you feel better when you are stressed.

Popular plants for stress relief are lavender, jasmine, basil, chamomile, and peppermint. These plants have one thing in common. They emit a calming scent that stimulates your brain’s relaxation response.

Even without the scent, houseplants can help you fight stress. The plants create a peaceful environment that calms you down. Their attractive visual appeal creates the serenity you would get when surrounded by nature.

Besides stress, plants like the snake plant and peace lily can increase your productivity. They absorb sounds, improving your focus and concentration. Aside from absorbing the noise, the plants boost productivity by relieving stress and improving air quality.

Improved Physical Health

Some houseplants are allergen magnets. They trap or absorb dust, mold spores, and volatile organic compounds that trigger allergic reactions. With such plants, you will experience fewer allergy symptoms like congestion.

Popular plants for allergen removal include the spider plant, bamboo palm, and Boston fern. Chinese evergreen, gerbera, and English ivy are also great for removing allergens. They are an excellent addition to your room if you are allergic.

Apart from allergens, indoor plants can also improve your breathing and respiratory health. Some, like the Rubber Plant, absorb pollutants like volatile organic compounds indoors. Others, like snake plants, release more oxygen into your indoor air.

Boosted Immune System

For centuries, people have been making medicine from plants. Some of these therapeutic plants have found their way into households. These medicinal cum aesthetic plants include aloe vera, rosemary, thyme, and fenugreek.

The therapeutic plants have antimicrobial or immune-boosting properties that aid healing. For instance, aloe vera is a potent antimicrobial and immune booster. The plant can heal wounds, psoriasis, and eczema. It also strengthens your body’s defenses.

The mere presence of plants indoors can also speed healing and recovery. These aesthetic plants promote relaxation, enhance air quality, and reduce stress. With the mentioned prospects, you will likely recover from illnesses like surgery.


The benefits of houseplants go beyond aesthetics. The plants also serve as natural air purifiers, absorbing pollutants and toxins. Beyond air purification, indoor plants also improve your mental and physical well-being.

They bring the greenery of nature into your space, helping lift your spirits. Other house plants like aloe vera are potent antimicrobials that treat illnesses, and boost immunity. Given these benefits, a houseplant shouldn’t miss in your room if you value your well-being.

Contact us today to learn more about significant health benefits of house plants.

Houseplants 101: Best Low Light Plants

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Houseplants. We love them. We need them. We want them all.

As houseplant care and collection continues to grow as a hobby, Nick’s wants to help you navigate the waters of houseplant care and selection! This blog series will help answer your questions and introduce you to various popular houseplant types, as well as help you learn how to care for them.

One of the most common questions Nick’s receives about house plants is, “Which houseplants are good in low light situations?” The answer is: lots of them! In this post we’ll talk about some houseplants that will do well in low light situations. If your favorite houseplant requires more light than you have available in your home, remember that sun lamps might be a good option. Nick’s carries sun lamps and can help you find the right product for you. 

10 Best Low Light Houseplants

ZZ Plant

This popular house plant has stunning foliage arranged in a very symmetrical form. The leaves are a bright dark green, and have a shiny finish. They require very little care, so they make a great starter plant for those looking to begin their houseplant collection.


These plants are one of the most sought-after plants right now. They come in many different colors and shapes. A member of the peppercorn family, Peperomia prefer indirect light due to the fact that in their natural habitat they can be found on the forest floor. Peperomia are air-cleaning plants that like humidity, so place them near a humidifier or in the bathroom. 

Golden Pothos

One of the easiest plants to care for. Even when neglected for a short time, they bounce back quickly. This vining plant with heart-shaped and variegated leaves is also an air-cleaner. As it requires low light, it would do well in nearly any area of your home. 

Nerve Plant

These little guys are a great option if you’re looking for some color.This plant is native to tropical climates, so it will do best in a place where it will receive some humidity, as well. (Tip: Is your house cooled by an evaporative cooler? Place this plant in the room where the evaporative cooler originates, making sure to place it far enough away from the cooler that the plant doesn’t get over-cooled.)


Begonia is available in many different colors, shapes, and forms as well. It makes a great hanging plant, and does well on a covered or shaded patio in the summer. Tuberous Begonia (Begonia X tuberosa) flowers are edible and have a flavor much like a sour citrus candy! (Always research your particular variety of plant and make sure no pesticides have been used on the plant before ingesting.)

Snake Plant

Snake plant is just about bulletproof. Like the ZZ Plant, it’s a great starter houseplant. With thick leaves that grow tall and straight and have light greens and yellows running through them, this plant makes a great floor plant, and will do well in corners with no or low light. As a bonus, Snake Plant is another plant that helps to clean the air in your home.


This vining plant, also known as Spiderwort, is available in many different varieties. The most common variety is Tradescantia zebrina – a dark mixed with light green and vibrant dark purple plant with shiny leaves. Tradescantia are typically very easy to grow and require little light. For a fuzzy option, try “Speedy Jenny,” Tradescantia chrysophylla. Spiderwort is a hardy plant that can survive some neglect. Like the Pothos, it may brown and dry up in places, but it typically bounces back well if a few waterings are missed.


If you’re looking for something tall and low-maintenance, Dracaena is your plant. Incredibly tough, Dracaena Massangeana can survive neglect and bounce back from a few brown leaves like a champ. The leaves are waxy and bright, and benefit from a quick dusting now and again to retain their shine. This plant, too, will help purify the air in your home.


Perhaps the most popular plant at the moment, Monstera does not require much light to survive (though it will benefit from and grow better if placed in indirect sunlight). Monstera likes to make a big statement, so put it in a place in your home where it will have lots of space to spread its leaves. Water about once a week, when the soil is fairly dry. 

Staghorn Fern

The first thing to know about Staghorn Fern is that it definitely needs humidity. Staghorn Fern is an epiphytic plant – meaning it grows by attaching itself to the branches of other plants. This means that Staghorn Ferns do not need to be potted, but can be mounted on a plaque, placed in a shadow box, or hung in a moss ball. In Colorado, the best bet for a Staghorn Fern is to place it in a bathroom with indirect natural light. There it will be kept warm and have the best option for the humidity it needs to survive.          

Houseplants 101: Best Houseplants for Beginners

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Best Indoor Plants for Beginners

By Jessica Kendall

In our last Houseplant 101 post we talked about the best houseplants for low light situations. In this article we’ll introduce you to some plants that are great for those just starting out with houseplants. The great news? A lot of these plants overlap with the houseplants we recommend for low light situations!

The Top 10 Houseplant Varieties for Beginners:

Sweetheart Hoya

The Sweetheart Hoya’s heart shaped leaves make this plant an instant hit. It will tolerate low light, but will grow better with some exposure to sunlight. It requires very little attention and, like most succulents, only needs to be watered once or twice a month. If the soil is nearly dry, it’s time to water. Succulents are very tough plants, but the number one reason that succulents don’t make it is over-watering. Their roots are very susceptible to root rot, so it’s important to make sure the soil drains very well. This is why succulent and cactus soil always contains a heavy balance of small rocks.

Snake Plant

Previously covered in our “Low Light Houseplants” blog, Snake Plant is a nearly-indestructible plant that will almost always survive, even if you can’t remember the last time you watered it…

Jade Plant

Jade is another great succulent option. Said to attract money and wealth, this plant has pleasing waxy dark green foliage, and can grow to be quite massive or be easily shaped by trimming new growth. Like other succulents, it can tolerate lower light but will grow better with exposure to sunlight.

(Tip: Wondering if your succulent needs water? Succulents hold all of their water in their leaves – it’s why they’re squishy and thick! Succulent leaves will be firm if the plant does not need water – because the leaves are full of water – and will be quite soft if they do need water – because the water stored in the leaf has depleted. If you find your leaves are squishy and you’ve been watering it recently, it’s likely the plant is experiencing root rot.)

Spider Plant

Spider Plant might be called the rabbit of the houseplant world – it reproduces like crazy! You’ll see healthy spider plants producing “pups” that can be removed and transplanted to become new plants. Spider plants like low-light, and are also subject to root rot, so water them once the soil is nearly dry, but don’t let the soil dry out completely.

Peace Lily

These houseplants produce showy white flowers and can grow up to three feet tall. Peace Lilies can tolerate lower light and will even thrive under grow lamps. They can grow quite large, both vertically and horizontally. Much like succulents, Peace Lily will tell you when it needs water. Keep an eye on your plant, and when you notice that the foliage is starting to droop a bit, it’s time to water. Peace Lilies will also benefit from having its foliage spritzed with water in the summer.

Fiddle Leaf Fig

One of the most in-demand plants at this time, Fiddle Leaf Fig is certainly a stunner. A member of the Rubber Plant family, Fiddle Leaf Fig is both easy to care for, and a big statement-maker. You’ve probably seen this plant in many different settings – from corporate offices to trendy plant posts. With the potential to grow up to six feet tall, the Fiddle Leaf Fig is a perfect floor plant. This plant does need sunlight, and prefers a filtered bright window. Fiddle Leaf Fig wants water once the top inch of its soil is dry, but don’t let it dry out completely before watering.

Aloe Vera

Another succulent, Aloe Vera is not just beautiful and easy to care for – it’s also useful! The gel-like substance contained within the leaves is used frequently to help treat sunburn. Did you know that Aloe plants themselves can get a tan? If you notice that your aloe leaves (while healthy and well) are turning brown shade, move them a little ways away from their source of light and they will revert to that beautiful minty-green color once again.

Prayer Plant

The coloring of these plants set it apart from the majority of houseplants. In general, most houseplants are mainly made up of varying (and beautiful!) shades of green. Prayer Plant can be found with shades of reds, pinks, and bright yellows running through them, as well as varying shades of green from deep to almost white. They only grow to be about 8 inches high on average, so they’re a good option for smaller spaces like desks and shelves. Prayer Plant will tolerate lower light areas and prefers to be out of direct sunlight (too much direct light can scorch the leaves). These plants like to be well-watered. Avoid watering if the top inch of the soil is still moist to avoid fungal problems and gnats, but don’t let the plant dry out. Water a little less often in winter.

Money Tree Plant

Most often seen with decorative braided trunks, these plants are said to bring good fortune. These trees don’t like too much direct sun and should be rotated if placed in direct sun. They can tolerate fluorescent light, so if you don’t have a lot of natural light this might be the perfect plant for you. Money Tree should be given a good drink of water once the soil has dried out, but don’t let it dry out for long periods. As the plant grows, you can continue to braid the trunks by braiding and tying them loosely, or let them grow naturally.

Golden Pothos

Maybe the easiest of all houseplants (right up there with the Snake Plant), Golden Pothos is a very forgiving plant for those just learning to take care of houseplants. Pothos will tell you when it’s getting too much water by yellowing its leaves, and it’ll tell you when it’s not getting enough water with browning and crunchy dead leaves, but the plant itself is quite hardy and will survive as you learn. The vines can grow to be very long in a relatively short period of time, so it’s perfect for anyone wanting to have lovely drapey greenery in their space.


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You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!

Laceleaf, or Anthurium, are popular plants for offices and are especially popular around the holidays. This is due mainly to the bold and striking coloring of its “flowers” and the fact that it can survive in lower lighting situations. Laceleaf is comprised of bright green spade-shaped and shiny leaves and a stand-out “flower” of bright red, yellow, or pink. This flower is not technically a flower, but part of the spathe. Also known as Flamingo Flower, Tail Flower, and Painted Tongue Plant, this plant will grow to be around 12-15 inches in height, and grows in a habit much like a standard garden flowering plant – leaves and spathes grow vertically from the ground on stems.

Laceleaf is not pet or people safe (they are poisonous to both, so keep them out of reach of curious paws and tiny hands), but it is said to aid in purifying the air around it. Laceleaf will only “flower” if placed in bright, indirect sunlight, but it can survive in lower levels of light as well. For this reason, plant companies will often place these plants already “flowering” in offices and remove them once the “flower” is spent. Watch the leaves for leaf burn (crispy brown spots on the leaves in or near the center) as direct sunlight can cause these burns.

Laceleaf needs a balanced watering schedule. Take care not to overwater the plant, but don’t go too long without watering either, as the root ball can be difficult to re-wet if it becomes too dry. Laceleaf does prefer some humidity, and loves a lot of humidity. If you see the edges of the leaves begin to brown, this is usually an indication that the plant needs more humidity. Try placing a humidifier near the plant, or putting it in a bathroom where it will benefit from regular shower steam.

To water Laceleaf, wait until the top two inches of the soil are dry and then use the “Drench and Drain” method of watering by soaking the soil until the water runs through the bottom of the pot, and then letting all excess water drain out before putting the plant back in a secondary pot, or on a tray or saucer. Never let a houseplant sit in water as this can cause root rot for many indoor plants. A pot containing a mixture of orchid soil and houseplant soil will work well for this plant, and any well-draining pot should do nicely. Keep Laceleaf in surroundings that maintain a steady temperature between 70 and 90 degrees for best results, and keep it away from heating vents.

Laceleaf can be pickier than some, so we would suggest this plant for Plant Parents who are already somewhat familiar with basic houseplant care.

Happy Plant Parenting!

Orange Prince

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You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!

Orange Prince is a relatively new plant on the houseplant scene. Discovered in the early 2000s, this philodendron has made a name for itself with its incredible coloring. It’s signature leaves start out yellow, warm up to a bright orange, and then before turning green develop a dark tint turning the leaves a copper color. These leaves grow from the center of the plant, unlike most philodendrons whose leaves grow along a trailing vine. Typically, Orange Prince Philodendron (whose name has many variations) can grow to be up to 3 feet tall and wide.

Orange Prince is very easy to care for, and has minimal requirements when it comes to its environment. It can handle everything from bright indirect light to shade, and will tolerate artificial light, as well. Watch your plant for fading colors, as this is a sign that it is getting too much sun (some plants fade in the sun much like some hair colors will lighten in the sun). Take caution when placing Orange Prince when it comes to pets as it is not a pet safe plant.

Water Orange Prince when the top two inches of soil are dry, and take care not to overwater, or to let the plant sit in water. Use the “Drench and Drain” method of watering. This means you will let the water pour over the soil and run out the bottom for a few minutes before turning the water off and allowing excess water to flow out of the bottom of the pot. Don’t allow the plant to sit in water in a tray or saucer as this can cause root rot. If your pot does not have drainage in the bottom, use a Moisture Meter to detect the level of moisture in the bottom of the pot both before and during watering to avoid adding too much water. If you do add too much water, gently tip the pot to the side and allow excess water to run out, but take care not to allow the soil to run out of the pot.

A Cactus and Succulent soil is a great option for Orange Prince as it will allow the roots plenty of room to breathe, and allow excess water to run out of the soil quickly. As mentioned above, a pot that is well draining is important, but no other precautions need to be taken when choosing a pot. Rotate Orange Prince regularly to encourage regular and even growth, and take a damp cloth to the leaves every now and then to keep them glossy and free of dust. Keep Orange Prince within a temperature range of 65-80. Overall this plant is very tough and only really at risk of being overwatered. We think it’s a great plant for beginner Plant Parents.

Happy Plant Parenting!

Red Tree Peperomia

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You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!

Like most Peperomia, Red Tree Peperomia is one of the easier houseplants to care for. Tolerant of different levels of light and forgiving where watering is concerned, Red Tree Peperomia is great for the Plant Parent who has mastered philodendrons and is ready to level up to something a little more exotic looking, but still manageable.

Red Tree Peperomia, or Peperomia Metallica, is another showy member of the Piperaceae family. Its dark green and deep maroon foliage has a metallic sheen to it that is sure to catch the eye. This peperomia is rather compact, growing in a bush habit to around 8 inches in height. Red Tree Peperomia will not flower, but it is pet safe and is said to be air cleaning. Note, we assume it is pet safe because other peperomia are, but as this particular peperomia is still new, we’re not completely sure about some things. For that reason it’s best to avoid taking chances.

Red Tree Peperomia likes bright indirect light, but it will tolerate medium light as well. Red Tree Peperomia is slow growing, so don’t worry if you don’t see a lot of growth. Plant Red Tree Peperomia in a soil that will drain well and let the roots breathe – Orchid or African Violet soil are great options. This plant likes humidity, and for temperatures to be around 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit.

Any well-draining pot will do, just try to choose one with good drainage holes. Let the soil dry out about halfway before watering. You can also watch Red Tree Peperomia’s foliage for signs that it’s time to water – the leaves will begin to droop when it needs a drink. Use the “Drench and Drain” method to water. Allow the water to flow over the soil until the water runs out the bottom of the pot. Leave it running for a few minutes and then allow the excess water to drain. Never let a plant sit in soggy soil or in standing water. If your pot does not have drainage holes in the bottom, use a Moisture Meter to keep track of the moisture level before and during watering to avoid overwatering. If you do add too much water, tip the pot carefully to the side and allow excess water to gently drain out of the pot, but be careful to avoid spilling the soil.

Happy Plant Parenting

Sansevieria Samurai

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You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!

Sansevieria Samurai is an easy to grow succulent that asks little and takes up little space. What makes this plant special is the way its spiked leaves grow in a spiraling fan-shaped manner. While most Sansevieria (think of plants you might know as “Mother in Law’s Tongue” or “Snake Plant”) grow with their thin, sword shaped leaves pointing up to the sky, this particular Sansevieria has thicker and shorter leaves that grow out toward the edges of the pot, and stack on top of each other. From the top they look like a spiral, and from the top they look like a fan.

Sansevieria Samurai is a member of the Asparagaceae family. It typically will grow to be around six inches tall. This plant is not pet safe, so keep it out of reach of pets and other little ones who might like to chew on things. Sansevierias are known to be plants that clean the air around them, so it’s a great plant to keep around for fresher air indoors. Plant Sansevieria Samurai in Cactus and Succulent soil, and put it in a spot where it will get bright indirect light.

They like to be kept in temperature between 60 and 80 degrees, and while they like humidity, they don’t require it. Keep Sansevieria Samurai in a place free from drafts and vents. Wait until the soil has dried out to water Sansevieria Samurai. Any pot will do, but make sure it’s well draining. Succulents are known for being especially susceptible to root rot if they are left in soggy soil, or if their pots are left in trays or saucers with standing water. Watch for leaves that become brown and soggy as this could indicate that root rot has taken hold. If your pot doesn’t have drainage holes, use a Moisture Meter to test the moisture levels at the bottom of the pot both before and during watering in order to avoid overwatering. If you do happen to add too much water, carefully tip the pot sideways and allow the excess water to drain away. Just take care with the soil and the plant as they can both easily become dislodged. Succulents have small root systems and are unable to hold onto the soil and stay in the pot as well as plants with bigger roots systems.

Overall, Sansevieria Samurai’s requirements are perfect for beginners but still have the look of a plant kept by a seasoned Plant Parent.

Happy Plant Parenting!

String of Dolphins

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You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!

String of Dolphins might be the cutest succulent in existence. This plant, whose scientific name is Senecio peregrinus, has leaves that are shaped like little dolphins leaping out of the water. These little dolphins grow on trailing vines like other “String of” plants such as hearts, bananas, turtles, pearls, etc. String of Dolphins is actually bred from the cross-pollination of Senecio Rowleyanus (String of Pearls) and Senecio Articulatus (hot dog cactus)These vines can grow to be around three feet long, and look wonderful spilling out of a hanging basket or trickling down over bookshelves or the edge of a stair rail. Part of the Asteraceae family, the flowers that grow from String of Dolphin plants (when the plants are very happy and in just the right conditions) are daisy-ish and are said to smell like cinnamon.

While most succulents rarely need water and like as much light as possible, String of Dolphins does better in medium indirect light, and needs water a bit more often than its cousins. String of Dolphins can, in fact, develop a sunburn in too much sun. The good news is that they are tolerant of artificial light as well as medium indirect sunlight, which allows them to be placed in a better variety of places within the home or office than some houseplants. Just keep in mind that String of Dolphins is not pet safe, so you’ll want to keep this plant away from pets and small children (and anyone who likes to chew on things).

When watering String of Dolphins, use the “Drench and Drain” method. Give them a nice long drink by allowing the water to run over the soil (use Cactus and Succulent soil for String of Dolphins) for a few minutes, and then allow excess water to run out the bottom of the pot. You’ll want to let the soil dry out completely, but you can use the “squish test” to determine just how thirsty your Dolphins are. Since succulents hold their moisture in their leaves, they will be nice and firm when they’re full of water, and get a little squishy when they need a refill. However, if they become brown and squishy, that could be indicative of root rot setting in.

 Follow these instructions and keep String of Dolphins in temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees, and even our beginner Plant Parents should have few if any issues with String of Dolphins.

Happy Plant Parenting!

Peperomia Hope

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You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!

Unlike other Peperomia plants, Peperomia Hope grows in a trailing habit, earning it the nickname “Trailing Jade.” It’s a fairly easy plant to grow. It is a succulent and as such has some specific watering requirements, but they are simple requirements to follow.

Peperomia Hope is a combination of two different Peperomia plants, earning it the name Peperomia deppeana×quadrifolia. This plant comes from Central and South America, and prefers higher levels of water and humidity. Because the plant is a succulent and as such prone to root rot, it’s important to find a balance when watering. The recommended watering method is actually quite simple: keep the soil relatively moist in Summer and Spring (during the grown period), and allow it to dry out between waterings in the Fall and Summer. As the plant grows, it will use more water more frequently, and during the winter the growing season will end and the plant will rest and use less water than it did during the previous seasons.

Its thick foliage grows on a long trailing vine, and is coin shaped and bright green with faint light green stripes. Peperomia Hope will not flower, but its attractive foliage makes up for the lack of flowers. Like other trailing vines, it can be trained up walls, across ceilings, or around stair rails. The young vines will first grow up, and then with time, flop over and begin to trail.

Water Peperomia Hope using the “Drench and Drain” method – allow water to run over the soil for a few minutes and then allow any remaining water to drain from the bottom of the pot. If your pot does not have drainage holes in the bottom, take care when watering and use a Moisture Meter before and during watering to assess the level of moisture at the bottom of the pot. If you add too much water, gently tip the pot on its side and allow as much excess water as possibly to run out without disturbing the plant or the soil. Peperomia Hope will let you know early on if it is getting too much water by developing scab like growths on its leaves.

Peperomia Hope will do best in low to medium indirect light, and is even tolerant of artificial light. It is both pet safe, and said to be air cleaning. All of these factors make Peperomia Hope the perfect plant for those darker places in your home or office that are in reach of tiny humans or pets that have a tendency to want to sample the flavor of houseplants. Peperomia Hope thrives when rootbound, so you won’t need to worry about repotting this one for a while.

Because it is believed to be good luck, and due to the ease of care, we rate this plant as being perfect for beginner Plant Parents, and also as a great plant for gifting.

Happy Plant Parenting!