Foliage Houseplants, Fertilizing, Cleaning Leaves, Aphids & ZZ Plant [audio]

Greenhouse Manager Nichole Keyes joins Emma and Nate for a conversation on choosing and caring for houseplants that will thrive in your home. They also share personal favorites, shopping tips and predictions for popular houseplants in 2021.
Money Plant Golden Pothos Variegated Leaves Ivy Arum

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Show Notes

Houseplants are as popular as ever right now, with many people spending a lot more time at home and craving the warmth and natural touches plants bring. Sometimes, us houseplant enthusiasts can even go a little overboard, bringing too many plants home and sometimes giving those plants a little too much TLC.

In this episode of Granite State Gardening, Lake Street Garden Center greenhouse manager Nichole Keyes joins UNH Extension’s Emma Erler and Nate Bernitz to exchange tips for choosing the right houseplants for your home and helping your indoor garden thrive. They also get into their personal favorites, houseplant shopping tips and predictions for popular houseplants in 2021.
 

  • Featured question: fertilizing houseplants
  • Featured plant: ZZ plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia)
  • Closing tip: Cleaning houseplant leaves
  • IPM tip: Controlling aphids

Connect with us at @askunhextension on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and subscribe to the monthly Granite State Gardening newsletter. Email us questions, suggestions and feedback at gsg.pod@unh.edu

Background reading

UNH Extension’s houseplant resources: https://extension.unh.edu/tags/house-plants

Lake Street Garden Center: https://www.lakestreet.com/


TRANSCRIPT


 Transcribed by https://otter.ai

Nate B  0:00  
Welcome to the Granite State gardening podcast from UNH Cooperative Extension. On today's show, Emma and I speak with Nicole Keyes, the greenhouse manager at Lake St. garden center in Salem, New Hampshire. Our conversation is wide ranging, including assessing your home's growing conditions, best growing practices, how to be a smart shopper, personal favorites and predictions for hot foliage houseplants and 2021. By the end of this episode, I guarantee you'll be inspired to grow some new plants because Emma and Nicole's enthusiasm and knowledge just rubs off. And y'all have a few new tips and tricks for your next house plant shopping outing to your favorite local garden center.

Greetings, Granite State gardeners. I'm Nate bernitz joined as always by horticulturist and UNH extension field specialist, Emma Erler. And today by Nichole keyes.

Nicole, I'm excited to hear some industry insider knowledge from you today. But I'd love to start by getting to know you. Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Nicole K  1:14  
I work at Lake Street garden center in Salem, New Hampshire. It's a small family owned business. It's been open since the 70s. I'm born and raised from Salem. So I used to go there with my grandfather, like as a child walking through the greenhouses. And when I was old enough to work he he knew the owner pretty well and kind of like gave me a little push and was like go ask for a job. Because I knew I was interested in plants and I love the outdoors. And I'm definitely a nature girl. So I started as a cashier there and just I didn't even know the difference between a Petunia and a philodendron. Back then just being there and and starting to learn I really my passion kind of developed. I've been there 18 years on and off through my life. So it's been a pretty cool journey. It's it's pretty unique that to be a part of still like family run business. 

Nate B  2:10  
Well, I know Emma shares your passion for scientific names for for the Latin. So let's start there. Why is that important?

Emma E  2:20  
Well, I guess I'll say it's, it's really important because common names can be misleading. It can be misguiding there. In many cases, there are multiple different common names that can be applied to the same plant. And in some cases, two different plants will have the same common name. So if you're using the Latin name, you're being as precise as you can possibly be. And any gardener, any botanist that you're talking to, is going to know exactly which plant you're speaking of and use that Latin name versus a common name. Because to a certain extent that can really be regional as well with what people will call a certain plant. 

Nate B  3:01  
Nicole, do you find that customers sometimes come in and they're asking about one plant, but maybe thinking of another? Or like really kind of actually practical examples where this really comes into play? 

Nicole K  3:15  
Absolutely. I think it's something I deal with on a regular basis and echo everything that Emma said, it's a lot easier for me, when a customer comes in knowing what plant plant they they're, that they're referring to. And like I've noticed, too, that with the trends online today, and like there's a lot of online sales going on all over the internet, and a lot of people are making up common names or coming up with cooler more funky names for plants and customers will come in like, do you have devils IV, and I'm like, what's a devil's IV and it's 1000 I've never heard it called Devil's IV in my life. And so like Google's my best friend today, when it comes to that, I have to do a lot of research online to kind of keep up with the trends and also to be able to educate the customer when we do figure out what they're referring to, you know that the scientific name of the plant and and I've noticed to a lot of the clientele that we have come in, they really do want to know you know, they they want to learn they want to learn the actual names of the plants and and there's this just this huge interest in foliage and houseplants in general. That's up and coming. It's just it's I'm excited to see it happen because it's you know, it's what I love.

Nate B  4:48  
So when someone is asking about something like Devil's Ivy, is it that that's just a pure rebranding of something that's otherwise actually a pretty common plant or Might that sometimes be referring to a new cultivars? Or is it some of both depending on the situation, 

Nicole K  5:07  
it can definitely be both. There's, there's a lot of new varieties, you know, plants are getting hybridized. And, and all the time. And so I'm find myself like I have to keep up with the different varieties of plants that are being sold and marketed and, and branding to is, is a huge thing. Because a plant that might be called like there's, there's a brand there like Angel plants and it's a trademark and customer will come in looking for that Angel plants, when really it could be a host of all different types of terrarium plants and indoor foliage that are sold in these little cube pots by one company. And they call them a certain thing like exotic angels and, and so I have to kind of differentiate too. And it happens not just with houseplants either like in the spring, it when we buy things in, there's tags in these plants from all different sources and companies. And if they're not read note that they don't know how to read the plant tag properly, they can think that they're calling the plant what it is when actually it's it's a trademark or a brand of the plant.

Nate B  6:32  
Is there any standardization to what's on those labels?

Nicole K  6:37  
Usually, they all look different. But most of the time the Latin name of the plant is down at the bottom of the tag. And of course, the brand or company will be in big, beautiful, bold letters across the top of it above the picture. So a lot of the times you have to and sometimes even on the back, you have to flip it over. And then when the lettering at the bottom, it says you know the the true Latin name of the plant. So yes,

Nate B  7:06  
so we've got these really specific plants science, scientific name, genus species. But if we take a step back Emma, what do you see as the broad categories within foliage house plants?

Emma E  7:20  
Gosh, you know what? A good question. I mean, broad categories, I'd say First off, I mean, you have vining plants. So perhaps somebody who's looking for something that's trailing, that has, you know, long stems, not necessarily twining, but something that that would have more of a drooping characteristic. Then you also have, you know, a whole broad variety of different foliage types, and different plants within those categories. So for example, I would probably include ferns in foliage plants and ferns are a class their own, then you've got a whole variety of different tropicals that have different needs. So there's a whole bunch of different really cool house plants that are in this foliage plant group that are in the Aram family arrowheads. So that's one group. And then you've got poms, like I mentioned, or actually, I didn't mention palms before, but you got palms and you've got all sorts of other interesting tropicals. Outside of that, too, I mean, you could probably be considering some of the other flowering plants in this foliage plant group as well. Some orchids have really beautiful foliage, and they're grown expressly for their foliage. And some of the bromeliads too, are grown just for their foliage. We're unlikely oftentimes to actually get blooms on them indoors in our homes, but they can be really lovely. So foliage house plants, that's really an artificial distinction that we're making. Right? Maybe it's an industry distinction. It's certainly not an academic distinction. It's, I think, referring to plants that are sold primarily for their foliage, as opposed to some other characteristic. Is that how you see it, Nicole? 

Nicole K  9:07  
Yeah, I mean, it. My greenhouse at this point in time is kind of split between two we have foliage plants, which are mostly, I mean, nowadays, they're not just green. foliage plants come in a host of beautiful colors, which is really cool. But blooming and non blooming or foliage. plants is kind of like how I would generalize it. 

Emma E  9:36  
Yeah, and I guess what I would probably separate out there to are the succulents because it's, they're different. Totally different needs in many cases. And I think in some regards, succulents are maybe waning slightly in popularity, just because a lot of people don't have the growing conditions they need in their homes in order to be able to grow them successful.

Nicole K  10:00  
Fully, I agree with that. I separate them entirely from everything else in the greenhouse because they, they do need full direct beating sunlight and to be run really dry. And a lot of the times customers will see pictures on Pinterest or in magazines with these beautiful succulent dish gardens like sitting in the corner of a bathroom or in the middle of a living room on a coffee table in these really impractical situations thinking that they can do that too. And I have to be the bearer of bad news. But I can make other suggestions. But um, but yeah, I I've seen a spike in popularity in low light foliage plants and a little bit of a decline when it comes to cactus and succulents. 

Nate B  10:53  
Well, you can't necessarily blame people because if you go into a store, maybe it's a big box store or something else. And they have succulents that are out for display and for sale in growing conditions that wouldn't support them long term, you might think, okay, like you can grow them anywhere there with all these other plants. I mean, you would have a better insight or perspective on this. But I suppose you can have any plant in sub optimal growing conditions for some period of time, but eventually they need to be put into more optimal growing conditions.

Nicole K  11:31  
Yes, yeah. And and yeah, I don't I don't blame the masses. Certainly not. There's so much false advertising out there. I consider myself somewhat of a plant advocate. I would say that, in regards to placing plants in areas where it might not be optimal for them, plants are super resilient. And a lot of the times they'll struggle for a long time before you can actually kill a plant. So there will be signs and symptoms that come up. But for a good while when you get a plant home, it's not going to really tell you yet if it if it needs to be somewhere else. 

Emma E  12:25  
I think what the you know why people are so interested in say succulents and cacti is just because they're so different from anything you'd see growing in the wild in New Hampshire. And they're really unique, interesting forms. When I first got really interested in plants as a little kid, that's exactly what I wanted to grow. I had a whole bunch of cacti, I had some Jade plants, one of which I still have. And yeah, I was lucky in that my parents, at least at their house had a really bright south facing picture window that I was able to keep my plants in and actually a little greenhouse where things could be in the summertime as well. So I feel like it's almost more of a refinement, I guess, for me to be branching out and looking at some more of these some different plants and focusing more on foliage instead of just really interesting forms that succulents have.

Nate B  13:22  
So you've both talked about how there's this trend towards, quote unquote, low light plants. Let's talk about low light. Are there any plants that actually thrive in low light? Or is it more of a tolerance and what is meant by low light is low light, just meaning that it's not direct sun? Does low light mean that it can be in a dark corner of a room? What is the distinction between these plants that tolerate or thrive in low light, whatever you say there, versus a plant that has higher light requirements.

Nicole K  13:59  
I described this all the time at my job because it's a really it's a, there's a lot of confusion around low light, bright, light, direct light, indirect light. And and so the way I usually describe it is plants that thrive in lower light don't necessarily need to be up against a window or in necessarily a brightly lit room. There aren't really any plants that are going to thrive in no light at all, but certain plants like Sansa various snake plant, some philodendrons poffo there's there's quite a few foliage type plants that will do well in the corner of a room or set into the middle of a room that may only have one or two windows and not get sun beating in bright light, in my opinion would be still indirect so not where the sun beets in in warms the area, but a room that's lit up throughout the day from natural light. So there are other types of plants that sometimes get confused with lower light plants but do need more indirect bright light, especially flowering houseplants like begonias or orchids, bromeliads, some types of older plants, like ponytail, palms and shift flera. And sometimes some of those plants can tolerate a broad scale of of that without really showing you, you know that it's too unhappy. So

Nate B  15:43  
how do you help people evaluate their growing spaces and understand where something fits in like, someone is looking at a north facing window, and they just don't know like, is this good for low light, am I getting more than what I need here, or a corner of the room that sometimes they just kind of walk by, and notice that it's lit up, but it's not like they're standing there with a timer, kind of keeping track of exactly how much light it's getting? Is, are there some other pointers that you might have for evaluating the amount of light a particular space gets?

Nicole K  16:22  
Yeah, so I'm, I'm kind of a quirky person. So I have these little phrases that I use sometimes. Because a customer will often think that they have full sun in their house, when really, it's just a lot of bright, indirect light. So in differentiating that, I will usually use this phrase of where the kitty would lay, like, where the sun actually beats in that little spot on the floor where it heats up. And I'll say that directly, because people understand that, you know, they can picture that one spot where like the kitty would snuggle. So, I use that oftentimes, and it works pretty well. Or I try to stray away from the directional usage is far as evaluating I mean, it is a good rule of thumb. But most of the time, people don't really know which side of their house is north and south. And unless you sit with a compass and figure it all out, I'm more of a visual learner myself. And so I'll I'll prompt them with questions, you know, between 10 and two is really the most intense part of the day in regards to sunshine. So if they have a window that's lit up until only about, say, 10 or 11 o'clock, in my opinion, that's morning sun that's bright, indirect light. So I kind of use time references with them. And and what it looks like in that room around that time to try and make suggestions of what plants might do well there.

Emma E  17:57  
I'll say to that, very few plants in my collection, would actually show signs of stress or injury from being closer to a window than I have them. I mean, certainly cold in the wintertime can be an issue with having if you have a drafty window, but in terms of light exposure itself, even my plants that will tolerate low light, are usually happier if I can have them closer to the window as opposed to further away. Probably the only real exception I'd say here is for things that that really like a lower light situation. I'm thinking of say like ferns, I probably wouldn't put my ferns in a really dark place or sorry, in a really bright place like a southern facing window, where it would get really warm. But other than that, oftentimes when I moved my other house plants outdoors in the summer, yeah, like today on their summer vacations.

Nicole K  18:55  
Windows Sun is lower in the winter than it is in the summer. So if you if you get all these foliage plants in the winter, or you're you know, you're exploring houseplants for the first time, say now and you have these plants in an area just like you said, the sun's actually going to change as to where the intensity is in your house. And so your plants might need to move around in the in the summer and take a little vacation. I like how you put that. My I have a big window in the kitchen, where I have all my little succulents and then they have to go over into the living room in the summer because the sun is totally different. And those two spots,

Nate B  19:39  
do different house plants have different temperature requirements, or are pretty much all that plants sold and advertised as house plants going to tolerate general and typical household temperatures.

Nicole K  19:53  
I find that temperature really only is an issue below. See 55 degrees, most plants 55 and up unless it's a you have woodstove, really hot, dry house. If there's a vent, a heat vent blowing in a certain area, those are types of temperatures that are more extreme that could negatively affect the plants that you have there. And then they're also on the other end, there are certain plants that through fall in winter, do like a cooler period, like flowering cyclamen is a big popular flowering plants for Christmas time. And they actually prefer cool temperatures are like a drafty window. And especially at night, they they like to be about 10 degrees cooler, and they do a lot better in that kind of setting. And then there are plants that like a lot of people are into growing fruiting things, edible fig. And what they don't realize is figs go dormant. So they lose all their leaves in September, and they're just these sticks and people think their figs have died. And they really want a cool dormancy period. So they want to be put in, you know, a garage or a basement, they don't need much light, a little bit of water here and there and they instinctually when the day start lengthening, they'll actually push their leaves out and start growing and then you can eventually after frost get them outside. But so there are specific things for certain niches of plants, but for the most part, I will say that, like is benjamina weeping Ficus. They're finicky when it comes to anything drafty or too hot or too, they just like shed all their leaves if they're unhappy. But what most people don't realize is the plants not actually dead. And those guys can completely defoliate and then push new growth in a pretty short amount of time, if you're watering it properly.

Nate B  22:01  
So you talked about a few examples. Most of them were non foliage plants, like fig or flat flowering cyclamen, you did give the one example of the Ficus but generally it sounds like foliage, house plants are pretty accommodating of normal household temperatures. I think sometimes people ask about temperature because they might be confusing temperature with humidity. In New England, warmer temperatures mean higher humidity, so people may be associating the two. I was speaking with someone a couple days ago, who I think was making that exact assumption. They were thinking that because I was recommending higher humidity for their ferns, they thought the solution was just to increase the temperature.

Emma E  22:51  
Yeah, not the same thing there. Although you're right, the air can hold more moisture when it is warmer, versus when it's cooler. So if your home is warmer and you have some source of humidity, whether that means a pebble tray near your plants or whether that means actually having a humidifier, you are able to going to be able to keep that that humidity up a little bit more humidity is is really important when it comes to growing houseplants there are certain things that I frankly can't grow in my house because I don't have a humidifier and I don't go out of my way to increase the humidity around plants. I have tried many times to be able to grow prayer plant and they just really don't like my home and I I'm not helping them out because the humidity is too low. Like you mentioned with the the trailing Ficus though a lot of times they will my prayer pylint will come back it'll look terrible winner and then when it gets warmer in the summer it will start to look a little bit better. But it's not the most attractive plant to have in my home in the winter months.

Nicole K  24:07  
I was laughing to myself over here when he talked about prayer plant because anything in the Columbia family and Miranda family in general they just I'm the same way I'm not gonna I mean a pebble tree is pretty easy. I noticed you mentioned that and just for people listening that don't know what that is, you can actually take a saucer and put a layer of rock or gravel in the saucer and fill it up with water just to the rock and and set the plant there so the plants not actually setting in the water. The water is evaporating up around the general area of the plant and it will raise the relative humidity for the plants itself. And I'm I have so many plants and I just if I if I if I put it where it needs to go and it's not going to do its thing I just grab a new plant because I have the leisure to do That was a profession but I have one coap in my bathroom that's a little brown around the edges but it's it's doing okay and it's pushed new leaves and it's not super happy but that's the most human place I have in my house. And to match the lighting in that room with the humidity is I had to find the correct plant for it, but it's a it's a calafia mosaica which is has this really cool patterning that almost looks like pixelated it's it's a really neat plant but so I was attached to having it no matter what. So that is the one. But other than that I I can't keep them alive for the life of me. It's what I do for a living.

Nate B  25:54  
house plant pests don't stand a chance when Rachel Maccini spots them. And as UNH extensions pesticide safety education coordinator, she knows you can't control what you don't scout. Now for Rachel's Integrated Pest Management IPM for short featured tip.

Rachel Maccini  26:10  
One of the most prevalent pests of houseplants are the aphids. These are small, soft bodied pear shaped insects that seem to come from nowhere. They prefer to feed on the new growth of the plants by inserting their mouth parts into the plant and extracting the plant juices. This feeding often results in yellowing and misshapen In addition, the growth of the plant may be stunted and new developing plant buds are often to form also as a phosphine. They excrete a sugary substance we call honeydew. This makes the plant's leaves shiny and sticky. This honeydew becomes a medium for fungus constantly mold to grow, which creates unsightly dark splotches on the plant surfaces. with minor infestations of aphids, you can handpick you can spray with water, or you can wipe the insects with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. If there is a major infestation a pesticide maybe warranted.

Nate B  27:16  
what are some other techniques for increasing the humidity in your home or at least in a particular area of your home to support plants? And can you give some more examples of house plants kind of across the spectrum from plants that don't have humidity requirements and will tolerate pretty much anything even the driest conditions in your house in the winter time to the plants that are maybe the most finicky. And really only for houseplant enthusiasts that are planning on taking significant steps to support their humidity requirements.

Nicole K  27:51  
I yeah, so I'm I can speak, right there's there's certain plants that you know, we sell pretty regularly. And I and I have tried to broaden our inventory. As I've as I've been in charge of the greenhouse department at Lake Street. So I'm more keen to know about certain plants and there may be some that I'm I'm just not as familiar with. But I'm definitely a driver dry and arid, obviously cactus and succulents. We we mentioned do okay. Shift Lera, I've found it's also called umbrella tree, they tend to be pretty tolerant of drier house settings, there's quite a few it seems like there, there's there's less that that need that that higher humidity than then others. So air plants is a is another one of those categories we were talking about to lancea that is really popular now. And they're they're cute little plants that don't need soil and you can tuck them in all kinds of things and put them in glass and put them in phases and put them in your bathroom and hang them everywhere. But the only way that they absorb the water that they need is through a very fine mist or humidity. in the air. They have these tiny, tiny little hairs all over them. And that's how they absorb you can actually soak them underwater and submerge them which is what I usually recommend people do when they buy them from me because of the fact that they they're not necessarily in the human requirements that they need. So you're kind of giving them what they need in a dose of bath for an hour once once or twice a week. Another thing that I try to decipher with customers if they're just using a regular squirt bottle, oftentimes the droplets are not a fine enough Miss for the plant to actually absorb So there's a lot of recommendations that I'm seeing online in forums and websites and things of missing, missing, missing missing. And you're not really doing too much because those those big droplets are going to evaporate faster than your plant is going to absorb them. We do sell, there's there's certain mysteries you can get that are floral grade and are more of a fine mist. And missing can definitely help with certain things. Like calafia, we were talking about prayer plant, air plants, bromeliads, I think or another one that like that really humid environment. And was there anything else you can think of and add to,

Emma E  30:48  
I'd say outside of the misting, because I think a lot of times missing for most people probably isn't going to be adequate for really increasing humidity around plants. Because unless you're home all day, and getting up and missing the plant, let's say every 15 minutes, they're still going to be pretty darn dry. And most of us aren't going to do that. Right? I know, I won't, I'll maybe think of it once a day. And that's not nearly enough. So if you're really trying to grow a lot of things that that do like higher humidity, I think it's probably worthwhile to actually get a humidifier. And to set that up in the room where you have those plants nearby, you don't want necessarily moisture to be collecting on the leaves of the plants. And if it's a humidifier, that's that's sending out hot steam, you also don't want that to be hitting foliage, but you do just you want that air to have more of a humid feel. And then there are certain things that just really appreciate more of a greenhouse environment for a lot of tropicals that do really need that humid environment, because they're there from, you know, a really wet rain forest environment, probably looking at 70 80%, humidity, you know, maybe even 90%. Whereas in our home, so probably the best we're gonna get is maybe 50%.

Nate B  32:14  
So that's in a bathroom.

Emma E  32:18  
Yeah, probably in a bathroom with a humidifier setup nearby in the winter months, it's probably going to be more likely closer to 30. If you are in a home with, you know, the furnace running wood stove going. But I think that's, you know, like we've already touched on, I think it just helps to, to recognize what the conditions are in your home and pick things that aren't going to be real fussy. And I think that's where it's helpful to talk to the staff. At the garden center, you're going to where you're going to pick up a plant and, and just be frank about what the conditions are like in your home.

Nate B  32:55  
I see there being somewhat of a spectrum where maybe on the lowest and we're talking about a place in your home, that not only is not humid, but also maybe next to a radiator, just getting pounded with hot dry air. And then you go to just a normal spot in your home. It's not humid in a special way. But it's also not getting hit with hot dry heat. And then maybe your kitchen right above your sink, there might be a little bit more humidity in your bathroom, there might be a little bit more humidity depending on how often people are showering and stuff like that in the house. And then for the enthusiasts, you might be adding a humidifier into the mix or even some sort of more managed growing chamber. Do you see a lot of houseplant enthusiasts actually going to that level and going beyond just conditions that they can create in their house and really introducing managed conditions with terrarium and other enclosures?

Nicole K  33:58  
Yes, and more so I think in the past six or seven months than ever before. I i there are a lot of people coming in talking about you know, indoor greenhouses and plant shelves and people are home now. You know, a lot of people are in their house and and they want plants because I think it's actually like an instinctual thing that we're coming into this trend because us as a society we're spending so much more time in the house and there's like this craving for nature right? And, and so people just want that atmosphere in their home. I can't tell you how many times I've had customers come in and say I'm making a home office now and I want plants for it. It's a it's a pretty common thing. Recently and and a lot of plant enthusiasts that that we do have a lot of regular customers and really cool plant people that come in and and they have this whole setup in their house with the humidifier and the grow lights and the whole nine yards and and so yeah, I do see a lot of that we don't sell that level of equipment at Lake Street so on there just to help help them you know, pick out what what they've gotten and decipher what they're doing. But a lot of people are pretty self informed. And when it comes to this stuff and, and, and very, very enthusiastic about their houseplants and taking care of them perfectly, I wanted to touch on something that Emma had said about her goldfish plant, it just made me think and this is kind of relative to what we're talking about. She she had described how in the winter, her goldfish plant loses some of its leaves, it doesn't look necessarily the most beautiful. And then in the summer, it's lush, it's full, it pushes new growth, and that's the case kind of with a lot of different plants is it's okay sometimes to lose a leaf or two here and there. Sometimes things defoliate and then regrow plants are just like us, you know, and they're definitely not perfect. And sometimes I get I get a lot of people who like one brown leaf and they come in like my plant is dying and like it's okay, I can help you. I have customers take pictures, email me, you know, describe what's going on bring in a leaf in a bag if they think that there's some type of disease or insect. But a lot of the times it's pretty regular to have some level of I don't want to call it ugliness because plants are awesome. But that defoliation or browning leaves or a little bit of brown tips on the end, especially when it comes to not having the perfect conditions because most of these plants are tropical. And they are from rain forests. And we live in New England. And, and we're trying to keep them in a tiny little pot in our house to admire so it's definitely something to consider that it's okay. And and a lot of the times still they'll survive even though they're they're not thriving at the moment. And there may be certain times in the year where they they do better than others.

Nate B  37:26  
I appreciate the house plant positivity I guess it's like if you find a gray hair or have something or have a headache or something, it's not the end of the world. It's It's okay.

Emma E  37:40  
All note too that anybody who's been keeping houseplants for a long time is probably killed a lot of house plants as well. I have certainly killed enough house plants. In the years I've been keeping them and through a lot of that I've learned not only just from the mistakes I've made with those certain plants, I have learned more about what they actually need. And I've you know, frankly learn which things are going to be able to survive and the conditions I can give them in my home and what plants are going to tolerate the care that I can provide. I'm one of these more negligent waters so I will often water less than my plants would probably prefer. And so I've figured out you know exactly what's gonna tolerate my schedule.

Nicole K  38:30  
I'm the exact same way with my house plants, they they just barely survive sometimes. Also, during the busy season, my houseplants take a hit because I'm I'm at the greenhouse most of the time. But it's actually especially in the winter it's almost a benefit to be light handed water. The number one killer of houseplants from what I've seen in this industry is over watering it's just too much love and and and oftentimes customers will think the plant is drying out to the level it needs to because it looks that way from the top. Um, but really those last few inches of soil in that pot make a huge difference and and being an underwater is more beneficial to your plants than than an overwater for sure a plant is going to come back a lot quicker from from being a little too dry than it ever will be from from over watering and rotting.

Nate B  39:34  
Emma from a scientific academic perspective, can you explain and demystify why overwatering leads to plant suffering. From a common sense perspective, it almost doesn't make sense but we see it time and time again that plants do suffer from over watering what is actually happening there.

Emma E  39:55  
So we know that plants are taking water up through their roots, right so it would seem Yeah, more would be better. But really what's also happening with plant roots is that they're also taking in oxygen, the top part of a plant is doing photosynthesis, all those green parts, and you probably know that plants take in carbon dioxide, and then release oxygen. So the top part of the plant is using limited oxygen only when it switches over to that burning energy phase of respiration. But that's solely what's happening in roots respiration. So oxygen needs to be able to get into the root system of the plant. When we water too much. Basically, what we're doing is drowning the roots, the plant is not getting the oxygen it needs. And in many cases, you kill the plant, just by doing that alone by drowning it. There's also the potential when you're creating this overly wet environment, that you're going to have issues with actual fungal pathogens, and experience rot and decay in those roots. So too much is not a good thing. You know, same same for anything else, I guess whether it's with people, animals, I mean, there's a limit. So getting the watering, right is what you need to do. Now, all this being said, there are plants that are adapted, obviously, to live in the water. Usually, we're not growing those indoors, these would be things that you'd be putting more into like a pond situation or maybe even growing in a fish tank or something similar. Not that you couldn't grow them indoors, we just don't usually do it. But most of the the terrestrial plants that you're going to be growing things that you're going to be picking up at the greenhouse, are not going to appreciate too much water, being lighter with the water is important.

Nate B  41:52  
What are the other factors besides actually how often you're watering on whether plants are going to suffer from over watering? I'm thinking possibilities might include the potting mix that you're using, how much water it's retaining how well it's draining, and maybe the container you're using, too. What do you think about that, Nicole?

Nicole K  42:12  
Yeah, all of those things you listed are definitely factors. As far as the potting medium, or potting soil that you're using, you definitely want to look for something that's nice and light and fluffy. Like Emma said roots need gas exchange, we don't usually wouldn't necessarily think that. But when I first learned that when I was being trained as a water, it finally made sense to me. You know, when you open that bag of potting soil, you want to be able to dive your fingers right in there. If it takes two hands for you to pick up that bag of potting soil, you might want to reconsider the brand that you're paying per light. If those little white specks in your potting soil, it's actually pumicestone it creates those little spaces, those air pockets that roots need. And then you know there's other plants that don't that might need more specific soil medium like orchids, want to be in a bark mixture. They're epiphytes, they grow on trees naturally. So when we stuffed them in a pot, we need to accommodate them and in some way and the size of the container is huge. I see a lot of people they see a plant they really like and they come in looking for it. And they already have a pot picked out because they love the pot the pot is pretty and it matches their house and but that pot might not necessarily be the correct size for the plant that we have that you want or that you're buying. So a plants there, especially in the winter, they they they like to be a little more rootbound a little tighter in the pot. If you're buying a plant, say a four inch or six inch plant, those are common sizes that are sold all over. You don't want to bump it up into anything bigger than say a six or an eight inch two inches bigger. I i've if you if you the more soil you have, the more moisture you have, the more chance you have of killing that plant. That's kind of how I put it in layman's terms to customers. The type of container to I I keep all my plants in my house and the plastic grower pots. I want a pretty pot, I'll find one that I can set that plastic pot into. I water a lot of my plants at the sink and then put them back where they are just for the sake of not having saucers everywhere and just the setup that I have. It's not really necessary but that's kind of how I do things but I I find the plastic it's air rated at the Bottom it allows the plants to dry out that how they need to. Next Level Up would be terracotta, like non glazed clay. And then glazed pottery dry, it's it takes a plant a plant a lot longer to dry out, say in a clay pot that's glazed because it's not porous, especially if it's ways on the inside or all the way up the rim. And so you, you want to take that into consideration.

Nate B  45:33  
And it goes without saying that you need drainage holes on the bottom there are a lot of pots that are sold that don't have drainage holes. So I guess that might be useful if you're tucking that plastic pot into it. But I recently learned how to drill holes into pots using a hollow drill bit it worked really well said buying cheap pots, and they're partially cheap, I think because they didn't have holes in the bottom and putting holes in myself that worked really well.

Nicole K  46:00  
I i've never yet we don't have one of those bits, but I sort of wish we did because the sales manager oftentimes will buy lots of pottery and and they're really cool pots, but sometimes they do come without drainage. And I take advantage sometimes of of what I know, in in just general knowledge as far as plant care, but yes, holes in the bottom of your pot is definitely necessary. You want that water to drain out the bottom. And there are if if if you're a little more comfortable, you have had plants before and you know that you're you're pretty good water, you can manipulate any pot to accommodate your plant, you can put gravel in the bottom of your pot where the water will catch, you can learn how much to put in your plant. So it just goes to the bottom and doesn't necessarily spill out. There's there's tricks to you know, if you're really attached to a pot and you consider yourself a little more experienced water.

Nate B  47:07  
I'm glad you brought up the gravel at the bottom because that's a question I think that a lot of people have is can you create that drainage layer at the bottom? My concern would be that the potting mix might end up just clogging at the bottom, sort of getting into that gravel and potentially stopping water from draining is my concern founded? might that be true for sand or something else? I mean, there's all sorts of things that you could potentially put at the bottom but is that going to work or what's your take on that Emma?

Emma E  47:41  
I'd be more concerned about just overflowing that reservoir so you have those stones at the bottom or the sand at the bottom and you have no way of knowing exactly how much water is down there at that level. So I I would be more concerned that I that that space all those pore spaces between the stones it's already full. But the potting mix at the top is looking like it's it's kind of dry so I put more water in there. I i've never personally had a whole lot of luck with with pots that don't have drainage I I have a few actually really nice glaze pots that don't have drainage that I've had for years and I've tried a number of different plants in them and I've found it's just it's really hard to get it quite right. For me anyways, I don't think I ever quite figured it out.

Please excuse the interruption. It's time for this episode's featured question. How to fertilize houseplants. fertilizing house plants is something that is often overlooked. Many foliage plants are relatively slow growing and have fairly low nutrient requirements, but they still need a fertilizer boost periodically for healthy growth. Most potting mixes contain few if any nutrients. So if your plants are looking pale or developing smaller than average leaves, then it's probably time to fertilize. Which fertilizer works best depends on what you're growing. Different fertilizers contain various percentages of the three essential macronutrients nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. In general, foliage house plants grow best with fertilizers that are high in nitrogen, whereas flowering house plants grow better with a higher phosphorus source. There are many specialty house plant fertilizers that work quite well for specific plants. However, a balanced fertilizer such as 10 1010, or 20 2020 is usually suitable for the majority of common plants. One thing I would avoid is organic fertilizers for houseplants. Not only can these products be smelly, but they require a soil microbial committee To make their nutrients available to plants, something that potting mix simply doesn't have. Finally, I'll close by saying that it is important to carefully read the fertilizer label and apply only as directed. Too much fertilizer can actually damage plants. Also, you should only fertilize when your plants are actively growing. Usually the spring through the fall, giving it a rest over the winter

Nate B  50:29  
interruption Excused emma. So Nicole, what shopping tips do you have for our listeners for the next time they go to their local garden center and want to pick up healthy plants that will thrive in their homes?

Nicole K  50:42  
So educating yourself on the most common pests of houseplants I think would be the first step. spider mite is a very very common one. And webbing any type of webbing between the nodes which would be where the leaf meets the stem or over the the leaf itself is is definitely a no no it's a it's a sign that there's there might be some insect damage going on. Looking for mealybug is another one, it's a little and white and fluffy and it kind of looks like mold and sometimes these guys can just be little tiny, white fluffy specks and you don't really know what you're looking at. But googling images of these things I think because coming from I sell a lot of different types of plants in one small one area, you know, and these these pests are gonna happen and we do the best that we can to practice integrated pest management program and be on the ball when when we get things in scouring over making sure that there's there's no little bad guys on there and treating them as well. But it's going to happen you know it to some extent and so I think we pride ourselves at Lake Street on on keeping our plants pretty clean. But insects are definitely something you want to look for fungus gnat is another one that's really popular if plants are getting over watered, consistently, fungus not can get his soil borne. And then they if you Brussel the plant or go to pick it up and these little flies come out, you know that those guys can spread pretty quickly and you can have a problem on your hands in the house looking for a nice lush green foliage, anything chartreuse or if you can see kind of veining and leaves of foliage plants, they're usually lacking nitrogen or you know deficient in some way which can be rectified. But they might not be in the in the in tip top condition. And looking for new growth, I think is a big one to it checking that plant and seeing you know, wherever then the new leaves are pushing out is is there nice healthy new growth on on the plant that you're buying. If there's a whole table of plants and you're you don't know which one to pick, shape, branching, nice full plants and especially the the new growth looking to see that that new growth is pushing is is something you you want to check for as well.

Emma E  53:46  
I'll often try to take a peek at the roots too. Sometimes that might mean just looking at the underside of that pot through the drain atolls. And I would ideally like to see routes that look white or more of a cream color that are nice and healthy. If I'm seeing just kind of shriveled looking brown roots on the bottom, it's probably a sign there's been some root decay from overwatering and that that plant is going to struggle along for a while if it if it does survive.

Nate B  54:12  
What exactly do you do with a plant that has at some point suffered from over watering and potentially some root rot? Is that something that plants can come back from and how can you help them or are you having to actually prune roots at that point trying to cut out decaying roots are well those roots potentially heal on their own.

Emma E  54:35  
So the damaged roots aren't going to heal, but you could potentially get new healthy roots if there's still existing healthy roots on that plant. You could get healthy new growth expanding from those roots. First thing I would do is just totally cut back on watering. And if you're using a pot that doesn't have a drainage hole, or if it's something that's been in the same pot for you Let's say five or more years, it's possible that drainage hole has gotten clogged up. So repotting, it can be helpful. But I have a porthos right now that was given to me that decidedly had some root rot going on when I got it, but it is starting to push some new growth because it is on my watering schedule now. So watering is is very light and those healthy roots that were still on the plant, I think of there, they're still there. And I've gotten some new growth, expanding from those roots too.

Nicole K  55:33  
Another thing too, is downsizing the pot sometimes, when customers come in and show me pictures, I can usually decipher that it's an over watering issue. And if you if you take that, if you go to report it or just to even see what the roots are, and most of the soil falls away and you have this tiny little root ball in this pot, spit into downsizing the pot into some fresh soil and getting it on a new watering schedule will will help push healthy root growth as well.

Nate B  56:08  
When you talk about a watering schedule, how do you think about that and plan for a watering schedule for your plants? Is that something where you're watering? When you know that the plants need water? Or are you potentially able to at some point figure out that a plant needs water every week, or every 10 days or whatever it is, how do you really lock that in?

Nicole K  56:32  
I think using my five senses are some of the senses anyways, maybe not taste. But smell sometimes, you know, you can smell some dank soil. But a I would say that that's the best way to do it with your plants individually. Because most of the time people want things that are convenient. And so they want to water on Wednesday when they're home or one day a week. And oftentimes you have plants in different sized pots that need different watering requirements. So I'll actually take the customers plant that they want to buy. And I'll show them how you can brace the plant with your hand and tip it over and pull that pot off the bottom. And you can actually see that the top might look dry. But further down, you still have moisture. So they bring the plant home and they water it and they put it where it wants to go. Every few days or so with this new plant, they can check and they can see you know how how far it's gone. How much that soil has dried out. Obviously different plants want to dry out to different levels, which you would want to educate yourself on when you buy the plant. But visually when I teach girls how to water in the greenhouse to it, that's another another thing that I do is I have them pull off that pot and see because usually, most often it will look dry on top and it's not ready yet. To checking out the soil would be a big one.

Emma E  58:11  
Yeah, I would say I don't really have a true schedule. When it comes to watering, I would say I pull out the watering can a couple of times a week that first pass through I'm not watering everybody might be just half of my plants actually need water. So those will get watered and everybody else gets left alone for the time being. And then if I you know come through again, before I disappear for the weekend, I might be watering some of those same plants again, and maybe some of the ones that got left out before so it's, it's really just based on plant need. Rather than saying, I need to do this once a week, every Tuesday my plant gets water. It's really you just need to work on your observational skills, feeling the soil, taking a look at it, maybe at some point letting that plant get almost to the point of wilting so that you know what that looks like. And what the potting mix feels like when it's that dry.

Nate B  59:12  
I want to get your predictions. Um, I'm not sure if you have predictions or not. But if you do go for it, but Nicole, I know you have predictions. What are the plants that you think are going to be especially popular this year? The plants that you've noticed have been growing in popularity or you think are going to be growing in popularity very soon.

Nicole K  59:35  
Yeah, there I mean, there's a lot I've I've worked at Lake Street a long time and I will say I used to never be able to sell snake plant and now I cannot keep snake plant on my table. There's so many cool varieties. There's cylindrical snake plant which is rounded there's, you know, different variations of snake plant and and Since avaria, is 10 times more popular than it ever has been. So that's definitely one philodendron in any species, especially anything variegated philodendron Birkin is one that's really hot right now. monstera deliciosa monstera ad and Sonia I which is sometimes called Swiss cheese vine that has that kind of serrated leaf to it but more binding and smaller than the delicious dosa. People are just becoming philodendron collectors it's it's kind of a thing now. And every I get calls every week of Do you have this type that type and, and I wish that I had more of a source but I do the best I can to get in but we have had Birkin in. We do have Adam Sonia and zyliss yosa. And so those also another type of porthos is Cebu blue is one that's become more popular. It has this really beautiful silvery blue foliage and it's not your typical heartshaped leaf. It's one of those plants that Emma was talking about that kind of spills over and it's I'm a big fan of the Cebu I have one and I love it. People are also I would say, orchid cactus I've noticed an upcoming trend and especially Fishbone orchid cactus, which has sometimes called Ric RAC is an old common name for it rickrack cactus it has, it looks like a bone, it's really cool. It has these big lobes and it flowers. And I've I've had more people at cult like we've had people calling and asking and we've propagated more of that, because of the prediction that that's going to be more popular string of hearts is another one that I can only I it's a it's not the most vigorous grower so we can only put out as much as we can and propagate and then it's gone. And I'm bringing in like a tray at a time and it disappears. And so that's one that I can't even keep in there. Another one that we've had the mother plant for a while and we just never really propagated it because it i don't know i i noticed it a few months ago down there for the first time but we've we've had it for a while it's in the sixes family and it's called Partha gnosis is amazonica or jungle vine. It has these really almost similar to an angel wing begonia. It has these elongated wing shaped leaves with like a reddish Maroon underside and a silvery foliage and it is a little different in the sense that it doesn't need direct sunlight, but it's actually a climber. So it does send out runners that will cling on unlike patos and most philodendron that just our bridal veil, there's other ones that just kind of spill over the pot this one will actually climb if it has something to cling on to and so we've started propagating those and that's another one that is just flying off the shelves. it's it's a it's a really cool plant try to scan Sha two I also known as wandering Jew there's some really neat hybrids that have come out like Nanak which is has this like light pink and green variegation and the underside of the leaf is like purple like a color shade that you wouldn't think would be natural to a plant it's I have one I love it My room's purple purple girl so I and then try to sketch a rainbow is another one it has this cream and purple and greenish variegation really funky and awesome. But any of the tracks I have like nine different species of try to sketch I have a whole try to sketch a table which is a first for me in Lake Street garden center history. So that one's really cool too. What about you, Emma?

Emma E  1:04:24  
Oh, gosh, I mean, I I feel like I've been seeing a lot of Hoyas around as well as being pretty popular and a good choice if you don't mind waiting a long time or don't mind a plant that will just kind of sit around and not do a whole lot which I think can be fine. That's kind of how the the snake plants are to where they're, they're not gonna grow you know very quickly, but you're going to have something that's that's pretty hard, too hard to kill. One of my favorite plants that I have right now is my cast iron plant aspa distro. It's really attractive, really more of kind of an old fashioned vibe but it's it tolerates the low light condition I have it in doesn't mind the soil being on the drier side so I'm hoping to see more of that plant around because I do think it's it's worthy of being a part of this this new foliage plant craze.

Nicole K  1:05:23  
I actually had a hard time getting those in this year which has never been the case for me we we order a lot of foliage from Florida at the end of our you know, spring growing season when when summer is fading into fall we we try to vamp up the greenhouse for winter sales and it wasn't on the availability at all and usually I'll get six in and they can't tell them all winter. And we actually had customers calling this year asking for her cast iron and it's called that for a reason for sure who that plant is pretty I won't say indestructible but it can it can tolerate a wide range of conditions that yeah, it is that is a cool plant. I think one of my favorites. I'm a begonia girl anyways I love all but don't me and my boss to the owner of Lake Street we when it when spring hits between angel wings and dragon wings and tuberous but don't we just we do too much. He's like more and I'm like yes. Or I'm always trying to look for different colors. I just we have an affinity for begonias, both of us so we share that but dragon I'm sorry, angel wing begonias. Right now the macula Ladas are, are hot. They're they're definitely we have a mother plant that we've had for almost 30 years. It's a begonia Ksenia, an orange blooming variety and it has that angel wing type leaf with the silver spotting on it and this bright orange clusters of flowers. And we usually sell it as a shade hanger in the spring. And I kind of saw this trend up and coming and I asked our grower to propagate some of it. And it I it's it was a good prediction is they're they're going like crazy and angel wings. And I would say abutilon I think is an underrated winter flowering house plant. I mean, it will actually flower most of the year if it's happy and has proper fertilizer conditions. But it's it they call it flowering Maple because the shape the leaf, it has nothing to do with the APL family. But it has this really cute like pendulous flower that hangs almost looks like a little like fairy skirt. And they come in yellows and paint. And I'm a big fan of training standards. So like I like to take a plant that would normally be a bush and try and turn it into a tree. It's like a nerdy fun thing that I like to do and it along are really easy to actually do that you can pick away all the foliage and just leave this little ball at top. And if you keep picking away all that foliage on that main stock, and get rid of all the others, you'll get this nice little round head and this cute little tree. So I think that's why I love them so much.

Nate B  1:08:30  
But would you say for houseplant customers, there's a particular time of year where you're going to have access to the best variety and selection at your local garden centers are there for Lake Street and for other garden centers, I assume that the trends and timing are relatively similar, like is winter a really good time to buy or some other time here.

Nicole K  1:08:55  
So usually, after the we start slowing down with our annuals and vegetable sales, spring flowering items and stuff, basically, when there's space in the greenhouse, which is usually around August, that's when I'll start looking at bringing in some foliage plants. Even it can still be a little hot and the sun can be really intense in there. So I have to be careful at the end of the summer. But I'm usually bringing in three or four shipments from Florida anywhere between August and October. So fall and throughout and I'm calling and checking and asking is something that you can definitely do to you know, inquiring when if and when you're getting new shipments of houseplants is something you know it's a question we get often

Emma E  1:09:47  
I would imagine to having customers tell you what they're looking for giving you a call talking to you, you know at your business is helpful for you as well in terms of planning.

Nicole K  1:09:58  
It does. I will Say, though, that the trends come and go so quickly that what's popular now in three weeks like might not necessarily be, and especially next season, I don't, I can't even predict what I mean, we were deemed essential through the, you know, the whole COVID shut down in New Hampshire garden centers and nurseries were able to stay open. So we had three times the amount of volume that we usually do there, you know, and we did the best that we could to keep up with the inventory. But it was near impossible, even our suppliers sold out faster than they ever would have. And that's, that's continuing on now through fallen winter, and I've had more customers in my greenhouse in January than I've ever seen. Walking through there at four o'clock on a Wednesday, you know, I can have 10 people in there shopping for houseplants, and that's unheard of for us in January. So yeah, to answer your question, yes. I people call and ask and then I hunt is kind of what what usually happens.

Emma E  1:11:09  
I'd say I, I would say grow what you're excited about, you know, visit your local garden center. Do a little bit of research in advance or take advantage of the staff that are working there, use them as a resource. But uh, you know, don't don't pigeonhole yourself either. With just growing, you know, one specific thing that you think might be perfect for your, your location, you know, be willing to try a bunch of different things. And yeah, if you're really excited about the plant, chances are that you're going to do the research you need to keep that plant really healthy.

Nicole K  1:11:48  
Yeah, we covered so much. And this has been a really awesome opportunity. I'm, I'm really grateful for it. And thank you guys for reaching out to me to do this. And I'll say to you know, I've seen a lot of customers who really want to be plant people, but don't think they are, you know, in any can be a plant person. And Emma said it earlier. And it was the same for me I had to kill a lot of plants before I could keep plants alive. I can't tell you how many times I tried to grow an African violet. And now in however long it's been my African Violets are doing great. But just just keep trying, you know, and and and don't hesitate to ask questions. So a lot of people will come in the greenhouse and and, you know, feel like they're bothering me or whatever. But that's what we're here for. You know, I'm I love the QA and, and to be able to help customers out and and learn how to, you know, take care of their plants and broaden their experience and stuff. So don't don't hesitate to to utilize us as a resource.

Nate B  1:12:55  
And I would echo that for unh extension. That's why we're here too. So, yeah, everyone out there. Don't be afraid to kill plants. Don't be afraid to try new things. And don't be afraid to ask questions either to your cooperative extension to your favorite garden center. We're all here to help. So yeah, thanks again for coming on. Nicole. This has been really fun. We'll have to talk some more at some other point about some other aspects of house plant maintenance. We didn't even get things like fertilizing pruning, cleaning sanitation, we didn't talk about propagation as far as the How to and that could be its own episode, frankly, lots of opportunities for for future topics of discussion.

Emma E  1:13:48  
This episode's featured plant is zz plant seameo caucus ximea folia. It's one of the best indoor foliage plants I know of for low light environments. zz plant is native to dry grasslands and forests in eastern and southern tropical Africa, making it pretty solidly a house plant for New Hampshire. It's a member of the arrowhead family, which means it's related to other popular house plants like philodendron monstera and peace Lily. It's distinctive looking, and that is stemless with compound leaves that arise from rhizomes beneath the soil. The leaflets are glossy green, and they're attached to fleshy leaf stems that grow to about two to three feet tall. zz plant grows really well and bright indirect light, though will tolerate low light so it's a it's a decent plant to have a good ways from a window in your home. You should when you're caring for it water regularly, but avoid keeping the soil consistently wet. Soils should really be allowed to drive fully between water applications. plant will also do best if you keep it in a room where the temperature is at least 60 degrees. The last thing I'll note is that zz plant does grow slowly. But it's easy to keep looking good as long as you're being careful with your watering, occasionally fertilizing it and giving it a good source of bright indirect light.

I'd like to close this episode with a tip on how to clean the leaves of foliage house plants. Over time, dust and dirt can build up on leaves, and block sunlight limiting houseplants ability to photosynthesize. photosynthesis is of course how a house plant feeds itself in too much dust can prevent optimal growth. So ultimately, cleaning not only makes your house plants look better, but it also makes them healthier. Now how you can do this there's two ways. First, you can either put your plants in the kitchen sink or shower and run lukewarm water over them. Avoid hot or cold because this can damage leaves. If the plants are really dirty, then they can be sprayed with a diluted dish soap solution, which can then be sprayed off with lukewarm water. Another option if you have smaller plants is to use a dusting cloth or a gentle brush to clean individual leaves. cleaning house plants doesn't have to take too much work, but it will definitely keep them looking and growing better.

Nate B  1:16:39  
Thanks, emma. great tips as always, that's gonna do it for today's show on foliage house plants, our sixth episode of Granite State gardening. Our goal with the Granite State gardening podcast is to provide trusted, timely and accessible research based information to you and fellow gardeners. We've been so appreciative of all the great feedback suggestions and questions so far, but keep those emails coming. Our email address is g s g dot pod@unh.edu. We're also on social media at ask UNH extension and you can help us grow this new podcast by sharing it with fellow gardeners. And if you're so inclined, giving us a glowing five star review if the podcast app you're using allows it. Thanks for tuning in to another episode of Granite State gardening. Until next time, keep on growing Granite State gardeners.

Granite State gardening is a production of University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension and equal opportunity educator and employer views expressed on this podcast are not necessarily those of the university's its trustees, or its volunteers, inclusion or exclusion of commercial products and this podcast does not imply endorsement. The University of New Hampshire US Department of Agriculture and New Hampshire counties cooperate to provide extension programming in the Granite State learn more@extension.unh.edu

Transcribed by https://otter.ai
 

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

Transcript by otter.ai

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