Lifestyle

Easy care plants for great display

Gardening columnist Chelsea van Rijn.
Gardening columnist Chelsea van Rijn. Contributed

OH MY Goodness, it's Christmas. How did that happen?

I'm sure it was only yesterday that I vacuumed up the last of last year's tinsel.

Unlike many of you I am completely unorganised at Christmas and usually spend the whole month running around like a headless chicken.

I then go into a mad cleaning rush the week before because no matter how much I clean up the house it always looks messy - hard to believe with three kids - and we always have unexpected visitors.

Being a planty person the last thing I want my visitors to see is empty pots on my patio or inside or worse still, a plant that was accidentally forgotten about and due to life getting in the way of cleaning, is still sitting next to the back door waiting to be thrown out.

So what plants do I use to plant up my house or shady patio during the silly season? Answer: Phalaenopsis and anthuriums.

Phalaenopsis are commonly known as the moth orchid. They are one of the most popular orchids with more than 60 species and hundreds of artificial hybrids.

I find them extremely easy to look after and they put on a great flower show for at least a month, sometimes two. If I'm lucky I can usually get a second flush of flowering if I trim the flower stem in the right place.

They look stunning inside and coupled with the right pot can make a feature in any room, even the bathroom. When they are finished flowering I put them outside under a shady tree.

Anthuriums are a great full shade or indoor plant. They have beautiful luscious green foliage and have incandescent flowers that are usually shades of reds and pinks.

You can sometimes get purple and white and most recently a black, but rarely are these colours available. I find many people commonly refer to them as the "red peace lily" as they have a similar flower.

The best thing about anthuriums is they flower all year and profusely flower during the warmer months.

They can be used in pots or in the ground. If growing in a pot I find they don't like to be potted into a larger pot continuously. They quite like their roots to fill the pot.

During the silly season I like to be the only one that needs a drink. I don't want to be worrying about my plants all the time. I find anthuriums and phalaenopsis don't need a lot to drink and they don't like to sit in a saucer full of water.

To keep them continually looking good and putting on a great display I also give them a good soak in a bucket once a week with my liquid fertiliser Triple Boost. After the silly season I fertilise with Organic Link to help them remain at their best.

Even if you don't usually have your house planted up, the silly season is a great excuse to shout yourself something beautiful for the home.

Remember that because anthuriums and phalaenopsis are such beautiful yet easy to care for plants they make the best present for people who have everything or for the host of Christmas parties you'll be attending.

Topics:  chelsea van rijn, gardening, opinion




Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

'My husband lasted 6 weeks as a stay at home dad'

APN Hey Mummy Feature for online - stock images. Katie Dykes being interviewed for the webisodes. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star

FROM the outside, being a stay at home mum looks like a breeze.

THE EXPERT: Stop judging working mothers

SUPER MUMS: Being a working mums comes down to perfecting time management.

"WORKING for money is all right; so is working because you want to.”

OPINION: How to prepare your child for day care

Your kids will love childcare, but it may take some adjusting.

GETTING your child ready for day care is vital.

Health and nutrition with kids - how do you balance it?

HOW important is health and nutrition in your household?

Smack or no smack - where do you stand?

THE debate is reignited - is smacking acceptable?

Technology and kids: Do you ever cut their wi-fi?

Check out our new video series featuring mums having a chat

Why Baden-Clay's lawyers say he's not a murderer

Gerard Baden-Clay

The QLD DPP has moved to have Baden-Clay found guilty of murder

Waterfall at Queens Park

Waterfall at Queens Park.

Congratulations Melissa Faye

Food van crashes into embankment

Women treated at scene of motorway crash

Latest deals and offers

Driveway delivery

Toby Hill was born on June 22 on his grandparents driveway in Riverhills. Pictured is big brother Bradley Hill, dad Matt Hill, mum Hannah Hill, grandmother Donna Eagle and grandfather Nick Eagle.

Toby Hill was born on June 22 on his grandparents driveway in Riverhills.

Rosewood Amber Alert

No Caption

Audio of Detective Senior Sergeant Greg Williams of the Ipswich Child Protection...

Ernie Els dunks for eagle

Smooth swing, great shot.

Ernie Els lives up to his reputation for one of the best swings in golf.

Three bedroom, 1100sqm block: Is this Qld's cheapest home?

BARGAIN BUY: Is this North Bundaberg property the cheapest home in Queensland?

Becoming a real estate mogul is all about risk and reward

PROPERTY BOOM: Coast prices set to skyrocket

Like other areas in south-east Queensland, the Sunshine Coast is at the start of the upturn on the property clock.

Values predicted to rise 25-33%