Close-up of a Bird's Nest Fern

Now that the Christmas tree has been taken down until next year, that space may be looking a little barren and forlorn. What a better way to liven up your dwelling, especially during these winter months, than by adding some simple houseplants.

Houseplants can even help with your New Year's resolutions. They add oxygen, encourage restful sleep, increase focus, and beautify any area of your home, apartment, or even your workplace.

Prayer Plant - Maranta

Prayer Plant

Prayer Plants have an array of Interesting foliage markings. They are native to Central and South America.

Although prayer plants are somewhat tolerant of low light conditions, they do best in bright, indirect sunlight. The prayer plant prefers well-drained soil and requires high humidity to thrive. Prayer plant houseplants should be kept moist, but not soggy. Use warm water and feed prayer plant houseplants every two weeks, from spring through fall, with an all-purpose fertilizer. To help maintain a humid condition during winter months, place a bowl of water near the plant or set its container on top of a shallow dish of pebbles containing water. However, do not allow the prayer plant to sit directly in water.

  • Enjoys indirect light
  • Keep moist, but not sitting in water
  • Prefers to dry out between watering, having as much as 1 inch of dry soil
  • Keep plant between 65 - 70 degrees, with no drafts

Bird's Nest Fern - Asplenium nidus

Bird's Nest Fern

These ferns are native to tropical areas from Polynesia and Hawaii to Southeast Asia, Australia, and Madagascar. They are often found growing on tropical rainforest trees as epiphytes, that collect water and organic matter in their bowl-shaped rosettes from the surrounding area.

Fronds spread upward and outward to form a vase-shaped, green rosette with a nest-like center. Fronds typically grow to 18 - 24 inches long. The undersides often display sori (clusters of sporangia) which are actually "fern seeds" and arranged in herringbone fashion in straight black lines from the central mid-rib to the frond margin. All fern ancestors developed very long ago before flowering plants were on the earth. These sori are the way ferns propagate themselves.

  • Grow in bright light with no direct sun.
  • Keep soil evenly moist

Zebra Plant - Aphelandra

Zebra Plant

The Zebra Plant name is in reference to its dark green leaves with distinctive zebra-like white veins. Spikes of yellow-bracted flowers are long-lasting.

  • Grow in bright light with no direct sun.
  • Keep soil evenly moist

Urn Plant - Aechmea fasciata

Urn Plant Bromeliad

This bromeliad is native to southeastern Brazil. In its native habitat, it will grow in the ground or in trees without taking any nourishment from the tree. The pyramidal bright pink bract consisting of small violet flowers that bloom about one week. The showy pink bract remains for several months. When the bract begins to fade, trim it off and enjoy the silvery leafed plant.

  • Grow in bright light with no direct sun.
  • Keep soil evenly moist and avoid water in the crown of the plant.

Jade Jewel - Dracaena

Jade Jewel Dracaena

The Dracaena family of plants are native to tropical Africa.

This handsome, low maintenance accent plant has dramatic arched striped leaves. This plant is content in low light, and needs only moderate watering and occasional fertilizer to thrive.

  • Jade Jewels like medium light
  • Prefers to stay on the dry side, as too much water turns the leaf tips brown

Add some greenery to your space today, in celebration of Houseplant Appreciation Day!