Exotic houseplants are some of the most captivating, strangely beautiful plants in the world. They are native to Africa, Central and South America, and other
tropical and sub-tropical areas of the world including the Carolinas.
They dazzle us with the beauty of their stunning flowers and foliage.
The carnivorous plants intrigue us with the methods of entrapment for their prey.
Tropical bromelaids and orchids are epiphytic which means they do not require soil to grow. Epiphytic plants survive by clinging to a tree or other supports such as rocks. Epiphytes obtain all their water and mineral needs from the air. Their roots are exposed to air and when grown on other plants and rocks.
They cannot survive in typical potting soil but must be planted in special a medium for quick drainage and air circulation. Special orchid fiber for these exotic houseplants can be purchased at the garden center or nursery.
The moth orchid (Phalaenopsis) with its brilliant colors can make a showy addition to any home. Today, many people are taken by growing the easy-care varieties of orchids indoors.
Moth orchids (Phalaenopsis) are a great choice because they are the least expensive and most adaptable to grow and flower indoors. The orchid hybrids that are now grown have been cultivated to suit indoor environments.
The blooms lasts for weeks and even months, compared to
other flowering potted plants. The flowers appear in shades of white,
pink, red, green, yellow, orange, and purple.
The bromeliad (Guzmania lingulata) aka the Scarlet Star is a striking plant that has small flowers that are surrounded by large colorful bracts in red, yellow, orange, or purple. It blooms readily indoors in medium light. It also does well in low light conditions and artificial light making it ideal as an indoor potted plant. They also hold their color for an extended time, making them long-lasting. The flowers often last 2 to 4 months.
The earth star plant is a member of the bromeliad family; however, they are grown for the rich, subtle colors of their leaves rather than their inconspicuous flowers .
The croton (Codiaeum) plant is a tropical plant which is widely cultivated as ornamentals and houseplants. It features a variety of leaf shapes and colors from yellow, orange, red, green and purple-red. New leaves on the Croton plant are green and change color as they mature. The most popular species are C. variegatum, which has many cultivated forms of highly colored variegated leaves.
Elephant ear plants are grown for their beautiful foliage. These exotic houseplants are extremely handsome, with heart shaped leaves that can grow as much as 3 feet in length.
The plants themselves can reach up to 8 feet in height;
therefore, the ideal plant for growing indoors is the
Dwarf Elephant Ear. It is very decorative and looks great on a table.
The elephant ear is very adaptable
and can be grown in water or in rich soil, but it cannot be allowed to
dry out. This will only lead to the death of the plant.
The venus flytrap is a remarkable carnivorous plant from the sundews
family. It has sensitive leaves with traps that snap close on flies and
small insects. The insect dies and is digested.
The tropical pitcher plant is an insectivorous plant with trumpet-shaped leaf enclosure adapted with hairs for trapping insects. The rim of the leaf is lined with nectar which lures the insects. The hairs prevent insects from leaving. They fall into the liquid in the bottom of the trap and is digested by the enzymes. These plants are well suited to year- round growing in your own home or greenhouse. The smaller plants with the slow-growing vines are very decorative in hanging planters.
The zebra plant is an instant favorite with the brilliant yellow flower and the striking striped , dark green, waxy foliage.