Are you ready for more than just ordinary ivy and begonias in your living room, kitchen, or office? There is more to houseplants than what you might find at your local hardware store. Online plant sellers and plant collectors who travel far to find new species for us can help you cultivate plants that would normally only be found in Madagascar or South Africa. These plants can be difficult to grow indoors, even though they may seem rare or unusual.
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Adenium obesum is a desert rose that grows in the dry regions of Africa and Middle East. The desert rose thrives in dry, hot conditions, just like its name. The desert rose looks a lot like a bonsai, but the swollen trunk can be used to store water during drought. Your desert rose should receive plenty of sunlight and good drainage. Plants naturally go into dormancy during winter. Don’t panic if you notice a drop in leaf. It should be kept in a cool, sunny place. If the temperature outside rises above 70 F, you can give it a break on the deck to encourage new growth.
Although the banana shrub is named after its sweet tropical smell, it is not related with the fruiting banana trees. Michelia figo plants belong to the magnolia family. They have similar cup-shaped flowers on compact shrubs that don’t usually exceed three feet in container cultivation. The banana shrub is a medium-sized plant that can be adapted to all conditions. It needs partial sun, moderate watering, and room temperatures between 68 and 77 degrees.
Climbing the Sea Onion
The climbing onion (Bowiea.volubilis) is an excellent choice for houseplant beginners. It can tolerate a variety of environments and doesn’t mind being neglected. In spring, the bulb produces vigorous growth of lacy leaves and then goes dormant in fall. To support their growth, climbing onions require a small trellis. Your climbing onion should get full sun, so keep it dry.
Club moss is low-profile and fits well in modern homes. Salaginella can thrive in low light conditions but needs a humid environment. This plant is ideal for creating a mini terrarium, where it can add joy to your windowsill during all seasons.
The same plant that makes coffee arabica is also the one that gives you java. However, you may experience a headache while waiting for enough berries on your coffee plant to produce a viable harvest. The coffee plant has attractive, glossy green leaves and is part of the gardenia family. You can expect white flowers that are fragrant to accompany the red berries that produce coffee beans.
Coffee plants love moderate light and humid conditions. Although plants can get quite large, you can trim them back and they will return to their flowering size in a year.
Huernia Zebrina is one the most unusual looking plants you can grow. These waxy flowers appear plastic-like, but they are actually native to South Africa. Lifesaver plants, like other members of the cactus famiy, require full sun and sandy soil to thrive. Place the tiny plants on a windowill so you can see their unique anatomy.
Cement Leaf Plant
This succulent oddity is also known as jewel, limestone rock plant, carpet leaf and limestone rock plant. It needs high-light conditions and rocky soil like its native South Africa. Your Titanopsis calcarea might even produce a yellow flower among its warty leaves during the winter months if you’re fortunate.
It is not surprising that sensitive plants once believed that plants had nervous systems and feelings. Although we know now that leaves react to touch with sudden movements, Mimosa pudica’s reaction still amazes us. This sensitive plant is considered to be a weed in tropical regions. It will thrive with lots of sunlight and moderate watering.
Bat flowers are unique with their moody, darkened petals and long whiskery hairs. They are bracteoles which are thin bracts that grow from the flower stalk. Tacca chantrieri can be grown if you are able to grow orchids. Both love good air circulation, high humidity, and filtered light.