The vanilla bean plant, also known by its botanical name as V. planifolia, is actually a member of the orchid family. Commercial vanilla beans are cultivated in Central and South American countries; particularly in Mexico.
You can plant your own vanilla bean plant at home. You may need to order the plant root or a cutting of the plant via the Internet or through a tropical plant company. If you receive the plant through a tropical plant company or an Internet company, follow the directions that come with it. The vanilla bean plant requires an artificial tropical climate similar to the area where the plant is normally grown. The vanilla bean plant is sensitive to light, heat, and moisture. An ideal environment should be in indirect sunlight with ample humidity and away from extreme cold temperatures.
Anthuriums are not cheap, but they do have a distinct air of luxury. The flowering ones are the only types you are likely to find – large waxy ‘palettes’ each with a colored ‘tail’ at the center. These exotic blooms last for many weeks and the flowering season stretches from spring to late summer. Unfortunately Anthuriums are not easy to grow and only the most popular one (Anthurium scherzerianum) is reasonably tolerant of ordinary room conditions.
The Crystal Anthurium is one of the most eye-catching of all foliage house plants, but it is not easy to care for nor easy to obtain. It needs moist air and careful watering, and the aerial roots should be pushed into the damp compost.
Gardenia is a beautiful and fragrant plant for your home or garden. Delicate blossoms and a deep, sultry scent make these an attractive flower for many gardeners. Gardenia care takes some effort, as the plant is quite finicky about temperature, moisture and soil requirements. With a little care, you can have beautiful gardenias each year, but they may be too needy for the novice or distracted gardener.
Gardenia is often disappointment because it is extremely demanding. Gardenias should be planted in fall or spring, and need consistent temperatures of between 65-70°F (18-20°C) year round. For flower buds to form a night temperature of 60° to 65°F is required, and during the day it should be about 10°F higher.
There are some splendid bulbs, corms and tubers for your summer garden. Most are well known, with some surprise inclusions that botanically belong in this section. The stars include richly scented, beautifully colored lilies and gladioli, beautifull Allium, Begonias, Agapanthus and Dahlias.
Summer bulbs are seldom used in large drifts, or with other bedding plants, as are spring bulbs. The majority of them are best treated like ordinary plants in herbaceous or mixed borders, or perhaps used to add foreground interest and color in a shrub border.