Valentine’s Day has just passed us by, but it’s never too early to think ahead to next year. Instead of giving your significant other cut flowers that will wither away in a matter of time, or chocolates, which often disappear quickly as well, consider giving a unique and lasting gift. An indoor plant is a gift that will endure more than a just few days. As part of the decor it will continue to spur conversation about a great Valentine’s Day long after the date has past. Give an exotic plant maybe even a red or pink flowering plant in an eye-catching container and your Valentine is sure to be thrilled! If you are an interior landscaper consider giving your clients or prospective clients a Valentine’s Day themed container plant to thank them for their business and remind them of your services. If you send it a few weeks prior to Valentine’s Day they may be reminded that they would like your services for a Valentine themed plantscape. The following are a few ideas for Valentine’s Day container plants.
Bromeliads covers a wide family of plants, but many send up flower spikes that can come in a variety of bright colors. Often times the flower spikes are pink or red. Bromeliads are easy to care for and they usually require indirect sun from a window. It is important to keep the bromeliad moist, but not soggy. Place water in the cup that is formed where the leaves come together and in the potting soil. Once the soil is dry an inch or two deep or the cup is empty it is time to water again. You can use distilled water in the cup to prevent saline build up or simply wipe out the cup with a soft cloth in between each watering. V. flammea is one variety of bromeliad that Clemson Cooperative Extension recommends for beginner bromeliad growers. Guzmania is another variety of bromeliad that has beautiful red and pink flower stalks. For more detailed information on how to grow bromeliads visit Bromeliad Plant Care Information.
Anthurium have a red, heart-shaped flower perfect for Valentines Day. According to About.com Houseplants, A. scherzerianum and A. andreanum. are the easiest to grow and the most readily available. Anthurium prefer to be moist and kept above 60 degrees. You can keep them in a window that gets indirect sunlight, but move it away if it gets very drafty when the temperature drops. Anthurium would be ideal for a sunny kitchen!
This plant has beautiful pink or red flowers and usually flowers in the fall, winter and spring after a period of dormancy in the summer. To make the blooms last as long as possible the University of Minnesota Extension suggests keeping the plant in cool conditions. Do not let it get above 70 degrees and if you can put it in a cool spot between 40 and 50 degrees at night, it will last even longer. If the leaves start to wilt and turn yellow the cyclamen is too warm. Cyclamen can also be forced to bloom for another season. Once the flowering is done allow all of the leaves to dry completely. When the leaves are dry the tuber can be moved to a new pot and potted with the top half of the tuber above the soil. In the fall when the leaves begin to grow again water the plant thoroughly. Allow the soil to dry some between each watering. Once the leaves appear move the plant to a bright location and continue to keep cool. This will allow you to enjoy your cyclamen for another season.
These are just a few ideas for Valentine’s Day house plants. There are many more that could convey your thoughtfulness and add some brightness to a home or office as the winter drags on. What was your favorite Valentine’s Day gift? Have you ever given a plant to a friend, loved one or client for Valentine’s Day? What is your favorite variety?