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Indoor Gardening

Tangelo

Tangelo (Citrus × tangelo), is a citrus fruit hybrid of tangerine and pomelo or grapefruit (C. reticulata × C. maxima or x C. paradisi). They are also known as honeybells because of their shape. There are two varieties of tangelo that are most commonly available: the Minneola and the Orlando. The Minneola tangelo is a hybrid of a “Dancy” tangerine and a “Bowen” grapefruit and the Orlando tangelo is a cross between a “Dancy” tangerine and a “Duncan“ grapefruit.

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Pomelo

Pomelo (Citrus maxima or Citrus grandis) is a crisp citrus fruit native to South and Southeast Asia. An alternative name for pomelo is shaddock. The pomelo fruit is the largest of all citrus fruits, measuring 15-25 cm in diameter and weighing 1-2 kg. The pomelo tree is an evergreen which can grow up to 15m height and 10m wide. Wearing the biggest fruits of all the citrus trees it also has the largest leaves among all citrus. When in bloom it bears large flowers of 3-7 cm in diameter, either single or in small clusters, with cream colored petals.

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Repot Cacti and Succulents

Most of the succulents do not present any special handling problem but prickly cacti have to be treated with respect. If you have the possibility choose a compost especially formulated for cacti because this will be well drained and have the right sort of structure and nutrients levels. If you can’t find this type of compost than a soil-based compost will be a practical alternative. Large specimens do not need regular repotting. Just remove about 2.5 cm of soil from the top and replace with fresh cactus compost.

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Indoor Plants Position

The indoor plants variety is so large that with a little searching work you can find a house plant that suits any room in the house. You can find handsome house plants that will flourish in almost every site indoors, from a brilliant lit room to a dim passage or alcove.

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The Indoor Environment

The most important factors in deciding where to position plants indoor are the specific temperature and light requirements of the plants that you are going to grow indoors.  If the conditions are not compatible with the plants needs, they will soon become stressed and unhealthy. The most vulnerable plants are the ones that are newly purchased because they come from controlled growing conditions.

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Mandarins

Mandarin (Citrus reticulata) is a small citrus tree or shrub, rounded, usually thorny, evergreen that produces fruits resembling to oranges. The fruit is oblate rather than spherical. Reddish-orange mandarin cultivar is a variety of the mandarin and is known as tangerine (Citrus × tangerina). Tangerines are smaller than most oranges and the skin of some varieties will peel off more easily. Their taste is often less sour or tart than that of an orange. A popular alternative to tangerines are clementines, which are also a variety of the mandarins. They are also very easy to peel but are almost always seedless. Clementines are also known as seedless tangerines.

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In and Out Bromeliads

Growing Bromeliads indoors

Bromeliads are excellent indoor plants because of their colorful, long-lasting flowers and colorful foliage. Bromeliads adapt readily to the unfavorable growing conditions from our homes. Although many bromeliads are epiphytic, living on branches and trunks of trees or on rocks in their native habitat, most can be grown in containers.

You can grow them in clay or plastic pots, but if the plants are large and heavier, then clay pots are more stable. Because plastic pots retain moisture longer than clay pots, plants grown in plastic pots require less frequently watering than those in clay pots. Epiphytic bromeliads can also be grown in perforated plastic baskets and clay pots like those used for other epiphytic plants such as orchids.

Because bromeliads rarely have extensive roots, relatively small pots are adequate for most of them. Larger varieties can usually be brought to flowering into 13-18 cm pots. Terrestrial plants don’t need to be moved into larger pots until their roots completely fill the current container. Move young epiphytes into pots one size larger every spring until the maximum convenient pot size has been reached.

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Propagate Bromeliads

Bromeliads may be propagated by vegetative methods or by seeds. Most of the epiphytes will produce offsets the may be removed and grown on separately. The stoloniferous terrestrial kinds may be divided at the start of the growing season.

Many epiphytic bromeliads will only flower once and then will die, but before they flower they will form offsets around the base of mature rosette. Left them in place until they reach one third the size of the parent rosette, then remove them by hand or with a sharp knife and plant them separately. You can replant the parent rosette so that it can produce more offsets. Plant the offsets in a mixture of one part peat, one part well-rotted leaf mould and one part sharp, gritty sand and keep the young plants slightly shaded and at a temperature of about 21 Celsius degrees (70 F). Lightly mist-spray them daily with tepid water.

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Common Bromeliads

There are more than 50 genera of bromeliads, and many can be grown successfully as houseplants. The most commonly cultivated genera include the following.

Aechmea. Most of the Aechmea species are epiphytic. They have deep cups to hold water and outstanding foliage all year long. They have broadly bowl-shaped rosettes with arching leaves. The leaves are leathery, strap-like and may be solid, spotted, striped or banded, but all have spiny edges. The cylindrical, cone-like upright or pendant inflorescences have large, colorful bracts that remain in color for weeks or even months. They spectacular inflorescences are often red, pink or orange, with blue, yellow or black flowers. Fleshy, bright red or blue berries often follow the flowers. Most of Aechmea species are easy to grow, but they need bright light in order to develop well. Aechmea fasciata, one of the most popular bromeliads of this genus, is often called the urn or living vase plant because it appears to have provided a vase for its predominately pink inflorescence.

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Propagate Orchids

Orchids can be propagate from cuttings, by division or from seeds. There are six main techniques used to propagate orchids: division, back bulbs, keiki, aerial cuttings, meristem or tissue culture and seed. Vegetative propagation methods are the easiest and by this methods can be produced offsprings that are identical to the parent plant.

The simplest cuttings are small plants called keiki that appear from the nodes on stems of some monopodial orchids. They first develop leaves but as soon as they have developed few roost they should be cut from the parent plant with a sharp knife and potted into standard orchid compost. Water them sparingly and mist the leaves until the roost have established.

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