8 Best Indoor Plants for South Florida
Enhance your indoor living space with the presence of indoor plants, introducing plants into your indoor living environment is a game changer and a winner. There are so many benefits why indoor plants should be considered especially since we are about to enter into the winter months. Besides beautifying our interior, indoor plants pull toxins out of the air helping to improve indoor air quality. A beautifully maintained indoor garden also contributes to positive mental health.
From these reasons, it’s clear that the installation of indoor plants will place you on the right path that will enhance your indoor living experience, as a former interior plantscape designer I had the awesome delight of working on many indoor garden projects that brought not only change (beautification) but much delight to the homeowners.
Let’s connect with nature indoors as we bring our indoor living area to life with the addition of indoor plants, that can offer that color pop brightening your days even during the winter months. If this is your desire then continue reading to see how this is done.
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Orchids are some of my favorites, there are many orchid species that come in so many colors shapes, and sizes, these garden beauties will bring that quick color pop but handle with care because the flowers of orchids are very tender. Orchids are potted in a special potting mix known as orchid barks. Orchids are not only used as indoor plants but can be attached to the trunks of trees. Orchids should be placed near a west or south-facing window. Although a little water can be added to the orchid mix it’s best to mist the leaves. Fertilize your orchid with fertilizers that were formulated for it.
2. Peace Lily
I love peace lilies, I have worked with them on many garden projects, these plants however should be monitored because if peace lilies are not given sufficient water they will wilt and eventually die if the process (lack water) is prolonged. Once peace lilies receive the right amount of water provided they are caught in time the leaves will open up again. The peace lilies’ soil should be somewhat moist. Try to prevent the soil from completely drying out and avoid placing peace lilies in direct sunlight even direct artificial lighting will cause the leaves to burn. Fertilize peace lilies with osmocote or a 20-20-20 water-soluble fertilizer.
Zamioculcas zamiifolia also goes by the common name ZZ plant, the ZZ plant is known as the easy plant because of their ease of care. These drought-tolerant plants can go weeks without water which makes this plant the ideal plant for that person who’s on the go and doesn’t have time to really care for a plant. Allow the soil to dry before irrigating your ZZ plant again, place ZZ plants near a west or south-facing window. Apply osmocote or a slow-release fertilizer to promote healthy plant growth.
I have worked with Bromeliads on many interior plant projects, I love working with them. There are said to be about 2,700-3000 species of bromeliads, these garden beauties will give that color pop and are easy to maintain. Bromeliads can also be attached to the trunks of trees where they will grow, the soil should be somewhat moist. Bromeliads can be placed near a south- or west-facing window. A water-soluble fertilizer will provide the needed nutrients.
A popular vine that is mostly used on the interior is the golden pothos, proper care of the golden pothos will produce beautiful leaves and long healthy vines. The soil of the golden pothos should be more on the moist side but not waterlogged. Place pothos near a south or west-facing window, because pothos a vines that can be trained to grow and run, I have seen pothos growing up the trunk of a tree. Osmoctoe or a water-soluble fertilizer will keep your golden pothos growing nicely.
6. Snake Plant
The snake plant is another interior plant that can be grown in an outdoor garden as well, this low-maintenance plant is not fussy and easy to maintain. The snake plant will go to work for you, the soil of the snake plant should be somewhat moist and a little on the dry side. Place your snake plant near a south or west-facing window, when it comes to fertilizing your snake plant my experience with them is that they can thrive well without the added nutrients but if your desire is to apply plant nutrients then a slow-release fertilizer is ideal.
Anthuriums are a winner, I love anthuriums because not only are the flowers beautiful but the leaves are naturally glossy like the ZZ plant. Anthuriums also go by the common name Lady Jane, this lady will surely light up your world with a beautiful display of flowers. The lady Jane should be placed in an area that gets bright indirect light for example a west or south-facing window. Direct lighting will cause leaf burn. The soil of Lady Jane should be somewhat moist, not waterlogged, although Lady Jane will produce beautiful flower blooms without fertilizing a water-soluble fertilizer is still great to add for that nutrient boost.
8. Kentia Palms
Now this is one garden beauty that I worked with for so many years, the kentia palm gives that touch of elegance that will bring that wow but when installed indoors ensure that these palms have lots of room to grow. The soil should be somewhat moist, place kentia near a south or west-facing window, a water-soluble fertilizer such as triple 20, or a slow or control-release fertilizer for example osmocote is ideal for proper plant growth A Majesty Palm or a ponytail palm are similar when it comes to plant care
The ideal place to install indoor plants is near a south or west-facing window to take advantage of outside light, if there isn’t sufficient lighting then consider the installation of grow lights.
Because most indoor plants are tropical they prefer temperatures between 65-75°F during the day hours and about 10 degrees cooler at night time.
Making sure that your houseplants receive the right humidity is so important, while many tropical plants are used to humidity levels as high as 90%, a 50%-60% humidity level is ideal for most mature houseplants. Plants that suffer from low humidity stress symptoms are the presence of insect pests, the plant’s leaves begin to droop and wilt, leaves turn yellow, the leaf’s tips or edges begin to turn brown and the leaves become crispy to the touch.
How to Rise the Humidity Level of Houseplants
There are several proven methods that will raise the humidity level.
- Place water in a spray bottle and begin to mist or spray the leaves, make sure to get both the top and the undersides, this method can be done every other day or a least 3 times per week.
- The use of a humidifier is a great tool that will help to make the air more comfortable for houseplants to grow healthy.
- Create a micro-climate by placing several plants in a group, placing a small dish of water in the center will also boost the humidity level as it evaporates.
- A pebble tray will offer help as well, simply place a layer of pebbles in a waterproof tray, now add water until the pebbles are almost covered. Next, set the plant/ plants on top of the tray. The pebbles should hold the plant/plants above the water so that the plant’s roots are not constantly wet.
- Rooms such as the bathroom, kitchen, and laundry room are great places to place plants because in these areas the humidity level is comfortable for houseplants, During the drier months try to move your plants to these areas.
- Giving a plant a bath during wintertime is a great way to increase the humidity leave besides washing off any dirt that may be present. Place your plant in your bathtub and let the water run just for a few minutes. Ensure that the leaves are completely wet. Allow the water to drip before returning the plant to its location.
Knowing your plant’s water requirements is so important, it’s a known fact that most indoor plants suffer because of a lack of or applying too much water which can lead to root rot and other issues so again know your plant watering needs and give them that. No more, no less, During the colder months decrease the amount of water you give your plants but make sure that there is still some moisture. Allowing the soil to remain dry for too long can negatively impact your plant’s health. Two great tools to use to monitor your plant’s moisture level are a soil probe or a soil moisture meter
Fertilizers will give your indoor plants a boost, there are many brands and types on the market such as granular, powder, or liquid. Granular fertilizers are known as slow release and take a longer time to be used by plants. Powder and liquids are known as quick release and are taken up quickly or immediately by the plant’s roots. Granular will not burn plants but liquids or water soluble if applied too heavily or wrongly can damage plants causing plant burn or plant wilting. For container-grown plants, it is safer to use granular fertilizers. Before using fertilizer read and follow the manufacturer’s directions for the best results.
There are many indoor garden pests that will seek to feed ( extract plant’s fluids) on your indoor garden causing much damage, to counterattack these plant pests it’s important that you do a plant inspection at least once a week. What’s also important is identifying pest issues and then using the right control methods. Because you’re treating indoor plants it’s best to use organic pesticides that are human and pet-friendly. However, when using pesticides read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the best results.
Names of Indoor Pests
Bonus Points Just for You
- Before bringing plants indoors or if plants are already on the interior inspect for insect pests because as we approach the winter months insects will seek to overwinter or use indoor plants as a harbourage or haven from the cold. Once the cold months have passed insects will emerge during the warmer months where they will seek to do their damage.
- Make sure that the container has drain holes for water drainage because if there are no drain holes for the water to escape will lead to root rot.
- Avoid placing plants near heat sources or cold drafts.
- In regions where windows frost overnight move plants away from the window when the sun is just about to set, it will also help to place a heavy shade or other insulating material between plants and glass.
- If you discover that your ( liquid or powdered) plants got burned because of using fertilizer wrongly take your plant outside or in place in your bathtub and flush the soil with fresh water for a few minutes. Allow the plant to drain and then return to its location, monitor the plant for the next several days to see if there are any improvements.
- During the colder months don’t allow the plant’s leaves to make contact with the cold window that can negatively impact your plant’s health.
The Final word on the best houseplants for South Florida
Installing indoor plants is a great way to brighten up your interior, It is good to have that color pop that is not only amazing but brings that positive change that is not only appealing visually but will promote your physical as well as your mental health.
About the author
Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.