Plants

Growing Cress

Growing Cress

Cress is a traditional sprouting crop which many people grow in containers on a windowsill, often on paper. Cultivation and harvesting is virtually the same as for mustard. Broadleaf or curly cress (Lepidium sativum) and upland cress (Barbarea verna) are easier to grow than watercress (Nasturtium officinale), which requires very moist soil at all times.

Cress is the best grown either in spring or fall, as it runs to seed quickly and does not relish hot weather; the plants should be kept well watered, especially in dry weather. Land, or American cress is a good alternative to watercress and has a similar flavor.

The Lollipop Plant

The Lollipop Plant

The Lollipop Plant or Golden Shrimp Plant (Pachystachys) is a perennial shrub often sold as a potted plant in colder climates. It’s origin from South America. This plant bears cone-shaped flower-heads above the oval leaves. The main appeal is the long flowering season – from late spring until fall if the plant is liberally watered and fed regularly. The lollipop plant is an easy care plant that will do fine in semi-shade or full sun with routine rainfall or watering. Don’t hesitate to prune it when it gets leggy.


Pachystachys lutea grows about 1½ ft high, with flower-heads made up of golden bracts and white blooms peeping through. The leaves are prominently veined.

Heptapleurum

Heptapleurum

Heptapleurum is a fast-growing tree-like plant with about ten leaflets radiating from each leaf-stalk. Its main advantage over its close relative Schefflera is that it will happily grow as a bush if the growing point of the main stem is removed. This plant grows quickly in any fairly good soil and it loves partial shade. It is originally from Australia.

They may be increased by seeds, air layering or cuttings. Air layering is useful for pot-grown plants that have become tall and spindly. Heptapleurum is quite easy if you provide winter warmth, good light and moist air. Leaf fall may occur if there is a sudden change in conditions – blackened tips indicate overwatering.

The Most Beautiful Fall Climbers

The Most Beautiful Fall Climbers

Many fall climbers provide flashy leaf colors before the foliage falls, as well as late season flowers, and extraordinary seedheads. And, of course, there are some excellent evergreens, which provide a beautiful contrast to fiery, deciduous foliage, and are especially welcome once that has fallen.

Climbers can be grown up a wide variety of supports, including pillars and posts, trellises, walls (to which supporting wires have been attached if necessary), and trees.

Kitchen Garden: Harvesting And Storing

Kitchen Garden: Harvesting And Storing

Ripe vegetables and fruit wait for no one. Always harvest your crops when they are ready and if they cannot be eaten straight away, dry them or freeze them for use later.

It is unlikely that the harvest from your container kitchen garden will be large enough to cause any major storage problems. However, that said, there is every reason to do what you can to ensure that nothing is wasted and that you are able to make the most of your harvest and enjoy all the fruit, vegetables and herbs that you have grown when you want to eat them.

Plectranthus

Plectranthus

Plectranthus are like coleus and salvia, members of the mint family, with rapid growth, aromatic foliage and a variety of shapes and sizes. Like coleus, these plants will do well in the irrigated landscape, container
gardens and indoor situations as long as light levels are high.

Three species are known as Swedish Ivy. This common name indicates their popularity in scandinavia, where they are found in hanging baskets or on windowsills. Despite the name the leaves resemble a small and plain Coleus rather than a colorful Ivy. The trailing stems are covered by the fragrant foliage and they are fast-growing.