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Old 11-07-2007, 03:16 PM
 
Location: San Jose, CA
7,677 posts, read 24,971,777 times
Reputation: 3527

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I have a small apartment, not the best kind of living area for a gardening forum, but there are a couple of shelves just above the kitchen sink which don't appear to be good for anything except for keeping plants. That impression is reinforced by the fact that there's a skylight. It would be great to have green things growing, since I can't have pets and it would certainly make the place feel more like home! But, I know very little about their needs and how to care for them properly. I wouldn't want to buy a bunch of living beings only to have them all die on me because they can't take the conditions.

I can water as much or as little as necessary. My main concerns are that I don't want to attract pests, and they have to be able to survive with only the ambient light from the skylight (which is a bit yellowed), and whatever strikes them from the windows. I have a gas furnace as well, if that makes any kind of a difference. What varieties would you recommend and how do I care for them?
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Old 11-07-2007, 06:57 PM
 
Location: Jax
8,204 posts, read 31,555,612 times
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Spider Plants.

Not the most exciting plants, I know . But they're tough as nails, they don't need much at all. Plus you buy one, and then you have all the little babies from it, so soon you can have a garden of Spider Plants .

I also read recently that they are superior at cleaning indoor air . They're also very retro 70's, right in style again!
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Old 11-07-2007, 11:14 PM
 
Location: San Jose, CA
7,677 posts, read 24,971,777 times
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LOL, a retro touch would be perfect for my apartment because it hasn't been updated much since it was built in 1963..

Is my environment really that bad, though? Why?
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Old 11-08-2007, 04:22 AM
 
Location: NE Florida
17,835 posts, read 29,403,652 times
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have you tried herbs ?
Maybe some basil
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Old 11-08-2007, 10:05 AM
 
2,377 posts, read 4,749,208 times
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Maybe try some Pothos(Devil's Ivy) NOTHING will kill it !!! No pests, and you can keep it trimmed...My problem is I buy plants, cute, little plants, and they turn into 7' monsters !! African Violets might look good, but they can be a problem..pests and mine all die ! Also, A small Pony Tail Palm...they grow sloooow and don't need much water and no bugs...
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Old 11-08-2007, 11:26 AM
 
Location: Beautiful Table Rock Lake
870 posts, read 2,722,867 times
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Default Ideas...

Ivys are always a good choice! Also, look into Peace Lillies. They are easy and have a pretty flower. Mother in law tongue is also a good choice. If you have the proper humidity, and you should, being in the kitchen...try ferns! There are thousands of varieties and they (most varieties) are tolerant to abuse!
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Old 11-08-2007, 09:58 PM
 
Location: Jax
8,204 posts, read 31,555,612 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonarrat View Post
LOL, a retro touch would be perfect for my apartment because it hasn't been updated much since it was built in 1963..

Is my environment really that bad, though? Why?
Yeah, every interior has some kind of pollution (new house, old house, etc.).

There are so many interior pollutants - everything from radon to carpet glue fumes - it's hard to say what you might have, but undoubtedly, there's something, even on a small level. Plants help. Spider plants can really get the job done.

I like ferns too (not sure how they are as air cleaners?) and ferns are easy. Ivy could be cool because it would trail (creeping fig is another that will do this)......I like all the plants mentioned, but the ivies, ferns, and spider plants would probably best suit a ledge-like location .
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Old 11-09-2007, 11:27 AM
 
Location: San Jose, CA
7,677 posts, read 24,971,777 times
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Thanks everyone, I'll check the local nursery to see what they have in a fern or a spider plant. The vertical space is kind of limited so ivy is probably out, I don't want my kitchen to turn into Tales from the Crypt!
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Old 01-29-2008, 03:24 AM
 
Location: Gary, WV & Springfield, ME
5,826 posts, read 8,458,040 times
Reputation: 17250
Plants in an apartment-cauldron-planter-005.jpg
Every kitchen should have an aloe plant in it! It's the growing burn treatment center in a pot. If you ever burn yourself, just break off a tip of the leaf (or the whole spike if you really did it up right and burned your whole hand or arm) and rub the sticky sap on your burn. It doesn't sting and will take the pain right out.

The pothos is another all-time favorite. They don't like direct sunlight, but are good in diffused light and shade. I transplanted mine this past autumn into discounted candy cauldrons when they went on sale after Halloween.

Herbs are good, too. Try lemon grass, basil, mint, oregano and chives.

When I was in FL, a man I worked with grew potatoes in his pantry. It started by accident when his wife didn't use all the potatoes in a sack and forgot about the remianing one or two. They sprouted and he then kept spritzing them once a week with a spray bottle of water. The leaves and vines grew all over the shelving in the pantry.

As others have suggested, the spider plant in a hanging basket will love the humidity in your kitchen.
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Old 03-04-2008, 01:30 PM
 
Location: Philaburbia
31,164 posts, read 57,274,608 times
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You mean the spider plant I've had in the same pot since 1975 -- the one my cat ate down to the nubs when I went away to college -- is hip again?

Who knew ...
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