Houseplants and the Level of Sunlight
A spot in your home with abundant light and warmth, especially in the morning, like the living room, offers and ideal environment for houseplants. You still need to put the right plants in their right places and we will go through this in more detail with each plant and this post follows on from my last indoor plant article. Most indoor plants thrive as long as they are not directly placed in the scorching sunlight, particularly at midday.
As the sun grows hotter by the hour, sunlight starts scorching the leaves. The saps will overheat and damage the cells. Be sure to move plants placed directly under a window glass, as it intensifies the heat. Desert cacti can usually take scorching heat, but take good care to protect other plants especially from the midday sun.
Houseplants for a Sunny Living Room
Here is a list of plants best suited for a sunny environment, and tips on how to take care of them:
Passion flower (Passiflora Caerulea)
Passion flower is a climbing plant. In late summer and autumn, it produces amethyst purple flowers. Water freely from spring to autumn. After those periods water sufficiently only to prevent soil mix from drying. Water with standard liquid fertiliser once a month during spring and early summer. Place this plant in direct sunlight at normal room temperature.
It’s not an easy one to grow indoors but once it get’s started the flower just looks beautiful. The image above is of a freshly potted example. It won’t take long to hide the mesh. It’s a wonderful but cheap way to decorate your home.
Scented leaf geranium (Pelargonium)
This plant is ideal to display on a pedestal or on a windowsill. Its foliage releases scents of lemon, lime, mint, lilac or rose. Water moderately and allow to dry slightly between watering. Water with standard liquid fertiliser at half strength every two weeks from spring to late summer. This plant enjoys direct or indirect sunlight.
The Scented Leaf Geranium pots really well and will fit nicely in your living room. It’s not a bad plant for the bedroom either. It’s a good all rounder that’s very easy to manage.
Egyptian star cluster (Pentas Lanceolata)
This plant is a soft-wooded shrub. The flowers come in shades of red, magenta, mauve, pink or white. Keep moist throughout the year except for a 6-8 week period after flowering, when only sufficient water should be applied to prevent soil mix from drying.
Water with standard liquid fertiliser once a month. It’s quite large so should be floor standing.
Cape leadwort (Plumbago Auriculata)
This one is not an ideal indoor plant but I’d place it directly outside your French Doors, in a large pot, on the patio and there’s nothing stopping you making this plant a part of your outside decorative plan. It’s a really easy plant to look after and pots well. Making it ideal to look at whilst indoors. That said, there’s nothing stopping you placing it in the living room.
This plant is an evergreen shrub. Its clustered sky-blue flowers are tubular. Keep thoroughly moist from spring to autumn. In winter, apply only sufficient water. Fertilise with a high-potash fertiliser every two weeks from spring to summer.
Fairy rose (Rosa Chinensis)
Roses are usually outdoor plants, but this miniature variety is ideal for the living room. Keep the soil mix moist from spring to autumn. For humidity, put the pot on a tray of moist pebbles. This image is by 1-800-Flowers and you can contact them directly to purchase.
In winter, water sufficiently. Water with standard liquid fertiliser every two weeks from spring to summer. The plant needs a winter resting period of eight weeks at 45oF (7oC) or lower. Yellow is the colour of Feng Shui, and a good method of decoration.
Mother-in-law’s tongue (Sansevieria Trifasciata)
This plant seems able to survive in extreme conditions. It is tolerant of sunshine, dry air and drafts. It thrives for a longer time than most plants without water. Keep the soil mix moist during spring to autumn. In winter, water sufficiently to keep compost from drying. Talking of compost, I hope your making this yourself. Water with half-strength liquid fertiliser once a month from spring to summer.
You can see in this example just how well potted plants work against a hardwood floor. I’d be mindful of water damage though, and would have a collection pot under to avoid soiling. Houseplants provide colour and liveliness to the living room and are an instant decorative hit. Caring for them includes monitoring their exposure to sunlight. If the sun has become a little bit hotter, it helps to move these plants temporarily into shadier places. Most of all, love these plants as though they were your own children.