The Complete Guide to Keeping Your Houseplants Alive and Thriving: Everything You Need to Know Explained Simply

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Houseplants are one of the most enduring members of any household, providing a much needed addition of color, fresh oxygen, and character to any room. They can add a boost to your mood, the quality of air in your home, and the feeling you get when you return from a long day of work. For single people, they add a sense of responsibility to a home, especially for those without pets, and for families, they are a fun way to teach children responsibility. But every houseplant needs a different amount of care, ...

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Houseplants are one of the most enduring members of any household, providing a much needed addition of color, fresh oxygen, and character to any room. They can add a boost to your mood, the quality of air in your home, and the feeling you get when you return from a long day of work. For single people, they add a sense of responsibility to a home, especially for those without pets, and for families, they are a fun way to teach children responsibility. But every houseplant needs a different amount of care, including water, food, and sunlight. Some plants, with too much light or too little water, will simply die without warning. To combat this, you need a complete guide to understanding what keeps some plants alive. This book was written to provide all plant owners and potential owners the needed steps to keeping their beloved green friends alive, no matter how finicky they can be.

In this guide, you will learn all of the basics of houseplant care, starting with a thorough explanation and glossary of terms that are used to describe different plants and how they grow. You will learn what makes a houseplant different from other plants and how much water, sunlight, and food each plant needs to truly stay alive. Their specific needs are even more broken down by showing you all of the various houseplants known in existence and a guide for each type of houseplant with specific care instructions for how they best thrive in a myriad of conditions.

Top houseplant experts and gardeners have contributed their insight through various interviews to further the knowledge you can gain from this book and to help you overcome particularly finicky houseplants, finding the right location in the home, avoiding meddling pests and pets, and making sure some unknown contagion is not interfering with the growth of your plants. This book, for anyone who has ever wanted to add a little green to their home, is the perfect path to understanding and keeping alive your favorite houseplants.

Atlantic Publishing is a small, independent publishing company based in Ocala, Florida. Founded over twenty years ago in the company president’s garage, Atlantic Publishing has grown to become a renowned resource for non-fiction books. Today, over 450 titles are in print covering subjects such as small business, healthy living, management, finance, careers, and real estate. Atlantic Publishing prides itself on producing award winning, high-quality manuals that give readers up-to-date, pertinent information, real-world examples, and case studies with expert advice.  Every book has resources, contact information, and web sites of the products or companies discussed.

This Atlantic Publishing eBook was professionally written, edited, fact checked, proofed and designed. The print version of this book is 288 pages and you receive exactly the same content. Over the years our books have won dozens of book awards for content, cover design and interior design including the prestigious Benjamin Franklin award for excellence in publishing. We are proud of the high quality of our books and hope you will enjoy this eBook version.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781601383495
  • Publisher: Atlantic Publishing Group Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/30/2011
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.80 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction 13

Chapter 1 Houseplant Care 101 17

Water 18

Water temperature 22

Watering while away 22

Case Study: Why Water Matters 23

Light 24

South-facing light 24

East-facing light 25

North-facing light 25

West-facing light 26

Dealing with over/underexposure of light 26

Using artificial light 27

Choosing Your Plant's Container 29

Plastic 30

Clay 32

Terra cotta 32

Ceramic or glazed pots 33

Cachepots 34

Metal pots 35

Bamboo and wood containers 35

Using urns, tubs, and boxes 36

Plant stands 37

Hanging Baskets and Pots 38

How to choose the right plant container and display 40

Chapter 2 Soil and Fertilization 43

Soil 43

Peat moss 46

Composted plant materials 46

Sand 47

Perlite 48

Vermiculite 48

Mineral nutrients 49

Special Potting Mixtures 50

Orchid mixes 50

Fern mixes 52

Bromeliad mixes 52

Repotting 52

Fertilizers 55

Organic fertilizers 56

Inorganic fertilizers 56

Case Study: Info From an Industry Expert 59

Chapter 3 The Right Plant for Your Home 63

How to Choose Your Plant 64

Easy to Care for Houseplants 68

Shade thriving plants 84

Choosing Plants According to Location 91

Plants for foyers and hallways 91

Plants for a bathroom 97

More plants that prefer humid environments 102

Plants that thrive in sunny locations 112

Plants to Purify Your Home or Office 116

Air-filtering plants 117

NASA-approved plants 122

Case Study: Creating an Indoor Kitchen Garden 127

Chapter 4 Growing Herbs, Fruits, and Vegetables Indoors 131

The Banana Family 140

Citrus, Berries, and Other Fruits 143

Vegetables 151

Case Study: Basement Bananas 160

Chapter 5 All the Pretty Flowers 163

Indoor Plants that Bloom 164

Begonias 165

Bromeliads 166

Bulbs, corms, and tubers 170

Orchids 180

Chapter 6 Pests, Insecticides, and Disease 185

Bringing Plants Into Your Home 185

Pests 187

Ants 187

Aphids 187

Caterpillars 188

Cyclamen mite 189

Earwigs 189

Scales 189

Fungus gnats 190

Leaf miner 191

Mealy bug 191

Thrips 191

Vine weevil 192

Whiteflies 192

Spider mites 192

Chemical Treatments 193

Imidacloprid 194

Neem/Azatrol 194

Carbyl 194

Orthene 195

Homemade Remedies 195

Insecticidal soap 195

Hand picking 196

Damp wiping 196

Water spray 196

Rubbing alcohol 197

Tobacco tea 198

Sticky traps 193

Soap-oil treatment for spider mites 198

Plant Diseases 199

Fungal diseases 199

Case Study: Important Houseplant Considerations 201

Chapter 7 Growing Plants Chemical Free 203

The Best Soil Media for Organic Growers 204

Soil as an organic growing media 204

Amending Soil 205

Humus: the best organic soil amendment 205

Alternative organic soil amendments 206

Making Your Own Compost 209

Natural Fertilizers and Amendments 212

Growing Fruits and Vegetables Organically 215

Organic Pesticides for Houseplants 218

Why never to use chemical-based pesticides 219

Be careful buying organic pesticides 219

The Basics of Organic Pesticides 220

Prior to using organic pesticides 221

Do You Have a Problem with Pests? 222

Diatomaceous earth 222

Garlic pesticides and fungicides 223

Neem insecticidal spray 224

Orange Guard 225

Organic Lawn and Garden Bug Spray 226

Other homemade pesticides and repellants 227

Companion Planting 228

Chapter 8 Propagating Houseplants 231

Propagating Methods 232

Peat pots 232

Seed pellets 232

Sowing seeds in regular containers 233

Stem cuttings/vegetative propagation 234

Propagating leafy plants 237

Propagating bulbs 237

Forcing Winter Blooms 238

Case Study: Caring for Your Houseplants-While at Home or Away 244

Chapter 9 Tabletop Gardens 247

Tabletop Gardens Made with Glass Dishes, Jars, Lanterns, and Bowls 249

Water Gardens 252

Gravel/Japanese Gardenscape 253

Tray and Dish Gardens 254

Appendix A 261

A 261

B 262

C 263

G 265

H 265

J 265

L 266

M 266

N 267

P 267

R 269

S 271

V 272

W 273

Z 273

Glossary 275

Bibliography 279

Author Biography 281

Index 283

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 21, 2012

    Reading through The Complete Guide to Keeping Your Houseplants A

    Reading through The Complete Guide to Keeping Your Houseplants Alive
    & Thriving cover-to-cover can be tedious and overwhelming at times,
    but still, the book provides essential information for the beginner
    gardener. The author provides a comprehensive list of plants and very
    basic care descriptions for each; list- or chart-style notes and color
    images would have been helpful so that the reader could more easily skim
    through to decide which plant to purchase. But if, like me, you know
    nothing when you begin reading, this book will give you a basis for
    additional Internet research and the confidence to visit planting
    centers and ask the right questions. After you begin your at-home
    gardening, the book will serve as a key reference to remind you how to
    propagate tulips or the best way to water while on vacation.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 24, 2012

    As the owner of a non-green thumb but an eager gardener with a h

    As the owner of a non-green thumb but an eager gardener with a house full of plants, I enjoyed The Complete Guide to Keeping Your House Plants Alive and Thriving. It even gave me, a serial plant destroyer, hope that plants can survive inside my four walls.

    From Houseplant Care 101, in which author Sandy Baker spells out the basics, from watering tips to light necessities for plants, the book is a quality read. Baker comprehensively outlines, in the easiest of terms in a very helpful glossary with helpful photos and illustrations, a book brimming with tips on how to keep alive -and grow- everything from green plants to herbs to fruits. Changing your plant care ways is easily and understandably laid out for the reader. Both the beginner and the expert can learn from her clear, concise writing.

    This book is an easy, enjoyable read and one that will aid any houseplant owner, beginner or experienced.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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