Monday, February 23, 2009

Indoor Beauties

I always love to have indoor plants in my living or dining room space. They provide much life and naturalness to the ambience. This enduring penchant of bringing nature indoors have made me want to share some good examples of proven plants. However since I am in the tropics I could only speak of a few of my favourite tropical plants species that fit the bill.

I choose indoor plants to meet these criteria. First they should look neat, anything less will have to be brought outside for major repairs or change. Plants with a lot of leaves drop should be avoided. Secondly they should be hardy like not being susceptible to fungus or insect attacks , like dim or poor light and depending on the species can withstand little watering or over watering. Thirdly they should be able to stay indoors between 1-2 weeks . There are many that can meet the criteria mentioned. A few in mind are the corn plant ( Draceana fragrans'Massangeana' ), ferns like the familiar Bird's nest fern ( Asplenium nidus) , Bamboo species like the 'Japanese bamboo', Lady Palm ( Rhapis), Yucca, Aureum ( Epipremnum pinnata), Goose foot ( Syngonium podophyllum) and the Mother-in-law's tongue ( Sansevieria trisfasciata) . However to me nothing beats the Diffenbachias for their robustness and attractive large oval leaves with occasional creamy stripes and blotches.

In the centre of the picture above is one of my favourite indoor plant called the Monstera deliciosa, which has large evergreen, glossy and perforated leaves. The arrow shaped leaves towards the left belongs to the Arum family. The handsome and striking white creamy foliage plant at the centre is Diffenbachia 'Rudolph Roehrs' which can grow to about a meter high and is distinguished by the green midrib as well as green edges on its leaves. Next to it with creamy white bands which resemble tiger stripes is called Dieffenbachia 'Amoena'.

The above selection are primarily of the Diffenbachia or Dumb cane species. Here they are taken outdoors to expose them to more light and for hardening purposes. A little bit of education is necessary to enjoy these highly decorative foliage because its sap when mistakenly swallowed can cause the tongue to swell thus rendering speech impossible. I am quite allergic to its sap especially when I transfer them into a larger pot or when I need to cut them for propagation purposes and in the process may get the sap smeared on my hands or skin . The irritation may take about three to four hours to disappear. Nevertheless they are very hardy i.e. not subjected to insect attacks, last at least a week indoors and can withstand over watering.
A little care and lots of love is just what these beauties require to do their magic indoors.


Zuzana said...

You have so many talents! You are a great gardener too, with green fingers.;)
My mother loves indoor plants, I should show her this post.;))

Oldstock said...

Salam Pak Mahmud,

Reached here by way of Chahya deLight.

Love those indoor plants. I used to be keen on gardening too until I had to move to another place. Used to have 13 types of keladi.

My garden now is an embarrassment. I hope to rekindle the hobby soon. This blog of yours is very helpful in giving ideas. Thanks.

Mahmud Yussop said...

Protege, Great.Hope these pictures ignite her passion even more.

'Datuk' Oldstock, Thanks for droppin by.Wow! what a great collection you had of the keladi. Can always rebuild the collection, tell me when you do.

Hav a nice day, both of you.