Houseplants can help create a welcoming space for family and friends and a celebratory mood for holiday entertaining. The right plants can also make festive gifts. The best part: Holiday plants don’t have to be temporary. With proper care, many popular seasonal plants can actually be grown and enjoyed year-round.
Here are three popular holiday plants and how to care for them:
These exotic, trumpet-shaped flowers come in a variety of bright colors and sizes. Amaryllis thrive in almost any medium but prefer well-draining pots no more than 2 inches larger than the bulb itself.
When planting, leave one-third of the bulb fully exposed to prevent root rot. Water once, and place it in direct sunlight. Once growth occurs, begin watering regularly, keeping the soil moist and adding fertilizer as needed. Flowers should bloom in four to six weeks.
Remove wilted flowers but leave foliage intact. Move the plant outdoors once the threat of frost has passed. Allow the plant to go dormant in early fall, storing it in a cool place. Begin watering again in November.
This plant can be toxic to pets.
Though delicate in appearance, this tropical plant can bloom for several months with proper care. Orchids prefer bright, indirect sunlight and mild temperatures. Orchids should be planted in a well-draining substrate and be watered weekly and properly drained (taking care to keep foliage dry). Allow leaves to wilt in late summer to prompt new bud growth.
This plant is nontoxic to pets.
3. Holiday Cactus
This hardy succulent is native to southeastern Brazil and can last decades. For best results, place the cactus in indirect sunlight and water it once every seven to 10 days. Fertilize during the growing season (April to October). Moving the plant outdoors in early fall will encourage new blooms, but return it indoors before temperatures drop below 50 degrees.
This plant is nontoxic to pets but can cause gastrointestinal issues if ingested.
*Note: All plants should be kept away from heat/AC vents and other temperature hazards.
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