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  • Paddy
  • Born and educated in Germany, I came to live in the UK in 1982. After working in various jobs over the years, I am now a freelance writer. I have a passion for wildlife and nature in general and love my family, my dog Jet, writing, music and dragons.
  • Born and educated in Germany, I came to live in the UK in 1982. After working in various jobs over the years, I am now a freelance writer. I have a passion for wildlife and nature in general and love my family, my dog Jet, writing, music and dragons.

A - Z Plant List

A - B - C - D/E

F - G - H/I/J

K/L - M - N/O

P - Q/R - S

T to Z


The A - Z of House Plants is currently under construction. Plant names will be linked to their corresponding articles as they are added. Please be patient - there are a lot of plants, and there may be days when only one or two articles can be added at a time. In the meantime, why not take a look at some of these general care articles:


A brief Guide to Potting Mixes


When and how to repot House Plants


Grooming House Plants - the Basics


Indoor House Plants and Light


Ten House Plants tolerating low Light Conditions


Indoor House Plants and Humidity Levels


Watering Indoor House Plants


Fertilising House Plants


To save readers having to scroll through the whole alphabet when looking for a specific plant, each section will be moved to its own page once all corresponding articles have been added. 


Yet to come: 




(Haworthia species)

Heartleaf Philodendron

(Philodendron scandens)


(Helleborus niger)


(Hibiscus rosa-sinensis)

Hyacinth Flower

(Hyacinthus orientalis hybrids)


(Hydrangea macrophylla)




(Impatiens hybrids)

Iron Cross Begonia

(Begonia masoniana)

Ivy Geranium

(Pelargonium peltatum)


(Ixora coccinea)



Jade Plant

(Crassula ovata)

Janet Craig Dracaena

(Dracaena deremensis)

Japanese Aralia

(Fatsia japonica)

Jasmine Plant

(Jasminum polyanthum)

Jerusalem Cherry

(Solanum pseudocapsicum)



Kaffir Lily

(Clivia miniata)

Kentia Palm

(Howea forsteriana)



Lady Palm

(Rhapis excelsa)

Lantana Plants

(Lantana camara)

Lily of the Valley                                      

(Convallaria majalis)

Lipstick Plant                                          

(Aeschynanthus lobbianus)

Living Stones                                           

(Lithops species)

Lucky Bamboo                                        

(Dracaena sanderiana)



Madagascar Palm                                    

(Pachypodium lamerei)

Maidenhair Fern                                       


Mandevilla Plant                                       

(Mandevilla hybrids)

Martha Washington Geranium                   

(Pelargonium domesticum)


(Medinilla magnifica)

Ming Aralia                                              

(Polyscias fruticosa)

Miniature Roses                                        

(Rosa chinensis hybrids)

Mona Lavender                                        

(Plectranthus hybrid)

Money Tree Plant                                     

(Pachira aquatica)

Moses in the Cradle                                 

(Tradescantia spathacea)

Mother of Thousands                                

(Kalanchoe daigremontiana)

Mother-in-Law's Tongue/ Snake Plant        

(Sansevieria trifasciata)



Nerve Plant                                              

(Fittonia verschaffeltii)

New Guinea Impatiens                              

(Impatiens x hawkeri hybrid)

Norfolk Island Pine                                   

(Araucaria heterophylla)



Oleander Plant                                         

(Nerium oleander)

Orchid Cactus                                         

(Epiphyllum species and hybrids)

Ornamental Chili Pepper                           

(Capsicum annuum)



Paddle Plant                                            

(Kalanchoe thyrsiflora)

Panda Plant                                            

(Kalanchoe tomentosa)


(Viola x wittrockiana)

Paperwhite Narcissus                               

(Narcissus jonquilla)

Papyrus Plant                                          

(Cyperus papyrus)

Parlor Palm                                             

(Chamaedorea elegans)

Parrot Flower                                           

(Heliconia psittacorum)

Passion Flower                                        

(Passiflora caerulea)

Peace Lily


Peacock Plant                                         

(Calathea makoyana)


(Peperomia caperata)

Periwinkle Flower                                     

(Catharanthus roseus)

Persian Shield                                         

(Strobilanthes dyerianus)

Persian Violet                                          

(Exacum affine)

Piggyback Plant                                      

(Tolmiea menziesii)

Pink Calla Lily                                         

(Zantedeschia rehmannii)

Pink Quill                                                

(Tillandsia cyanea)

Pitcher Plant                                           

(Nepenthes hybrids)


(Plumeria rubra)

Pocketbook Plant                                    

(Calceolaria herbeohybrida)


(Euphorbia pulcherrima)

Polka Dot Plant                                       

(Hypoestes phyllostachya)

Ponytail Palm                                          

(Beaucarnea recurvata)

Pothos/ Devil's Ivy                                    

(Epipremnum aureum)

Powder Puff Tree                                      

(Calliandra haematocephala)

Prayer Plant                                            

(Maranta leuconeura)

Primrose Flowers                                     

(Primula hybrids)

Purple Heart Plant                                    

(Tradescantia pallida)

Purple Passion Plant                                

(Gynura aurantiaca)

Purple Shamrock                                     

(Oxalis regnellii)

Pygmy Date Palm                                     

(Phoenix roebelenii)



Queen's Tears                                         

(Billbergia nutans)



Rabbit Foot Fern                                      

(Davallia fejeensis)

Rex Begonia                                            

(Begonia rex)

Rosary Vine                                            

(Ceropegia woodii)

Rubber Plant                                           

(Ficus elastica)



Sago Palm                                              

(Cycas revoluta)

Satin Pothos                                           

(Scindapsus pictus)

Scarlet Star                                             

(Guzmania lingulata)

Scented Geranium                                   

(Pelargonium species and hybrids)


(Schefflera actinophylla)

Sensitive Plant                                         

(Mimosa pudica)

Shamrock Plant                                       

(Oxalis species)

Shrimp Plant                                           

(Justicia brandegeana)

Siam Tulip                                               

(Curcuma alismatifolia)

Spider Lily                                               

(Hymenocallis littoralis)

Spider Plant

(Chlorophytum comosum)

Split-Leaf Philodendron                             

(Philodendron bipinnatifidum)

Staghorn Fern                                          

(Platycerium bifurcatum)

Strawberry Begonia                                  

(Saxifraga stolonifera)

String of Pearls                                        

(Senecio rowleyanus)

Swedish Ivy                                             

(Plectranthus species)

Sweet Potato Vine                                   

(Ipomea batatas)

Swiss Cheese Plant                                 

(Monstera deliciosa)


Thanksgiving Cactus                                

(Schlumbergera truncata)

Ti Plant                                                   

(Cordyline terminalis)

Tiger's Jaw                                              

(Faucaria tigrina)


(Tulipa hybrids)


U - V - W

Urn Plant                                                 

(Aechmea fasciata)

Venus Fly Trap                                        

(Dionaea muscipula)

Wandering Jew                                        

(Tradescantia albiflora)

Wax Begonia                                           

(Begonia x semperflorens-cultorum)

Wax Plant                                               

(Hoya carnosa)

Weeping Fig                                            

(Ficus benjamina)

Windmill Palm Tree                                  

(Trachycarpus fortunei)


X - Y - Z


(Yucca elephantipes)

Zebra Plant                                              

(Aphelandra squarrosa)

ZZ Plant                                                  

(Zamioculcas zamiifolia)

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March 6 2013 4 06 /03 /March /2013 13:58


Plant Summary

gardeniaBotanical Name: Gardenia jasminoides

Type: Flowering

Origin: Though growing wild in India, Japan, Southern China, Taiwan and Vietnam, cultivated Gardenias typically originate from China.

Height: Gardenia jasminoides can grow to heights ranging between 30 and 90 cm (1 to 3 ft). 

Soil: This type of house plant prefers a potting mix that is lime free.

Light: Gardenias like bright, but indirect light. During the winter months, a little direct sunlight will not harm them.

Humidity: A wet pebble tray or a regular room humidifier will provide the humidity Gardenias love. During summer, misting is recommended, although care should be taken to mist only the foliage - Gardenia flowers should not be misted. 

gardenia-gtTemperatures: Gardenia jasminoides thrives in normal room temperatures ranging around 16 to 24 degrees C (60 to 75 degrees F). Providing night temperatures at the lower end of the range and day temperatures reaching the top end will promote budding.

Water: Throughout the growing season, the potting mix should be kept evenly moistened. Allowing the mix to dry a little between watering sessions and using a pot with drainage holes will prevent over-watering, which may lead to yellowing leaves. In winter, watering should be reduced slightly.

Fertiliser: Fed a diluted (50:50) liquid balanced fertiliser once a fortnight from spring through into late autumn. To prevent fertiliser burn, feeding should only take place while watering the plant.

Propagation: Gardenia jasminoides can be propagated by taking 8 cm (3") long cuttings of stem tips. Best cut in spring - or at the latest in early summer - the cut end should be dipped into hormone rooting powder, after which they need to be placed into moistened potting mix and covered to retain humidity. A plastic bag or cloche will be perfect for this purpose.

Description and Care Tips 

gardenia-woAlso known as Cape Jasmine, Cape Jessamine or Common Gardenia, the evergreen Gardenia jasminoides is a flowering shrub belonging to the Rubiaceae family. Cultivated in China for around a thousand years, Gardenias are often planted in gardens within subtropical/ warm temperate climates, while being kept as house plants in cooler temperate regions.

Since the plant was introduced to the gardens of England in the middle of the 18th Century, many different forms have been bred. Some forms are low growing, while others have particularly large, long lasting flowers. 

What all of these forms have in common are the beautiful creamy white and heavily scented flowers that appear among the prominently veined, shiny dark green leaves and greyish bark during late spring and summer. The flowers are later followed by comparatively small oval fruit. 

In its native habitats, this fruit is used to create a yellow dye for both food and clothing, and apparently, traditional Chinese medicine uses them in potions to treat fevers. 

Often given as welcoming/ house warming gifts, Gardenias should be repotted - selecting a fairly small container will control the plant's overall size - and pruned in late winter to keep them in shape and promote blooming. Pruning should be done using a clean, sharp pruner to cut stems just above nodes (where branches/ leaves are attached to them) at a slight angle.

gardenia-stWarm days followed by cooler nights (see above for ideal temperatures) and plenty of indirect, but bright light will trigger buds. Once the buds start appearing, the plant needs to be kept in a draft-free, well-lit area away from fire places or gas stoves (the fumes of natural gas can seriously harm this house plant).

Regularly checking the soil will prevent it from drying out - flowering Gardenias are extremely thirsty, and dry soil will result in the buds dropping off. It is, however, vital not to get the soil too soggy, as this may not only cause the leaves to turn yellow, but may also result in dropping buds.

It is important to avoid using very hard water to water Gardenias, as this will make it difficult for the plant to absorb the nutrients it requires. If using hard water is unavoidable, adding a little lemon juice or vinegar to it will lower the water's pH and make life a little easier for the plant. 

If placed outside during the summer, Gardenias should be kept in a shaded position and must be returned indoors if temperatures threaten to drop below 16 degrees C (60 degrees F). Well looked after, happy Gardenias may even flower a second time during the autumn months.

While keeping these gorgeous little shrubs happy seems to require a lot of effort, the magnificent flowers and intoxicating fragrance are well worth it.


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