When We Say Houseplants Are Tropical Plants, We Mean It

Colors like you might see in the Caribbean

Most of the United States is sweltering under various heat domes this summer. All sorts of records are being broken for high temperatures, including here in the frozen north (and yet, I would take this lovely steamy weather over our ice and snow anytime. I really do live in the wrong place).

Every year when I transition my ” houseplants ” outside, I talk about how beneficial this is for them, even for the brief term that they get to be outside in my climate–usually early May to early September.

Calathea rattlesnake

When this Rattlesnake Calathea came outside after a difficult winter, it had 4 leaves. After 3 months in a shady location, here is its recovered look.

Calathea orbifolia

This plant had a more dramatic recovery. It had 3 leaves, 2 of which were half dead, and it was spider mite infested. It’s better now, although I will obviously have to watch for mites once it’s back inside.

Alocasia Black Velvet

And this might have been one of the plants that I featured in my “It’s Not Growing ” post this winter. I can’t recall if it had 2 or 3 leaves but it just looked sad. It is much happier now. The old leaves are gone.

I could show you a dozen more examples but these are some of my most challenging plants. If they can do well, most anything can.

Obviously, in Northern climates it is a little late to think about transitioning plants outside now if you haven’t already done so. But definitely consider it for next year. The plants will thank you!

One thought on “When We Say Houseplants Are Tropical Plants, We Mean It

  1. tonytomeo August 8, 2022 / 2:49 pm

    Heck; I never intended to grow houseplants within my home in town, but did so because so many of the plants that I wanted to bring back from Beverly Hills would not have liked the winters here. Our winters are quite mild, but apparently get a bit cooler than down south.

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