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Plant of the Week: Kalanchoe

Big beauty, low maintenance. This colorful little succulent plant is easy to grow and almost as easy to bloom. Kalanchoe grows 8 to 12 inches tall with clusters of small, upright flowers in a rainbow of colors, including red, orange, yellow, gold, purple and white. It has thick, rich green, succulent leaves that retain water to sustain the plant with little water.

Most often grown in pots as a brightly-colored houseplant, Kalanchoe can also be used as a landscape plant provided you live in the right climate. However, their needs vary slightly depending on weather they are planted indoors or outdoors.

Indoors, Kalanchoe requires bright light and should be potted in a well-draining soil, watering only when the soil feels dry to the touch. This succulent plant can withstand periods of dry soil, however, soggy soil can lead to root-rot. Maintain flower color by providing bright, indirect sunlight daily for at least four hours. A sunny windowsill or a bright sunroom are the perfect spots for this plant. Remove dead leaves and spent blossoms when needed. The blooming period usually lasts four to eight weeks.

Kalanchoe planted outside also needs well drained soil, so in wet areas you will not have much success. The same is true if you live in a cold climate, since they do not tolerate the cold. Ideal temperatures are a low of 65 degrees at night and a high of 85 degrees during the day. Kalanchoe grows best in a sunny spot that receives some shade from the harsh afternoon sun.

With just basic care, you can enjoy this low maintenance-big on beauty plant that will brighten your home both inside and out!

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Living Valentines: Blooming Gifts from the Heart

Valentine's Day sneaks up on us every year, but no worries - we've got a whole host of blooming possibilities for that someone special. So bring a little spring into your home this winter with these amazing bloomers. This year, give a gift from the heart with these and many other living Valentines now at your local garden center!

Orchids - There is a special grace to the long, arching stem of an orchid. These elegant flowers will brighten tables and windowsills in your home for months at a time. Colors range from whites, pinks, lavenders and yellows in both solid colors or stripes and spots.

Daffodils - Who doesn’t like spring, especially in February? Jump start your spring with these petite daffodils sure to bring a sunny smile to any recipients face.

Cyclamen - These colorful cool weather bloomers boast butterfly-like flowers with dark green, heart-shaped foliage.

Kalanchoe - Big beauty, low maintenance. This colorful little succulent is easy to grow and almost as easy to bloom. Kalanchoe grows 8 to 12 inches tall with clusters of small, upright flowers in a rainbow of colors, including red, orange, yellow, gold, purple and white. It has thick, rich green, succulent leaves that retain water to sustain the plant with little water.

Bromeliads - These stunning plants are related to the pineapple family and are available in bright tropical colors. The unique foliage will add drama to any space during winter and beyond. Once warmer weather arrives, move outside and enjoy all summer long.

Check out more of our favorite plants! OUR PLANTS OF THE WEEK >>

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Plant of the Week: Tillandsia (Air Plants)

Looking for unique plants to tuck around your home? You'll love Tillandsia (also known as Air Plants). Set them on a stack of books, hang them near a window, grow them on driftwood or simply set them in a shallow dish. No soil needed!

Whether it’s because of the plant’s popularity on Pinterest boards, or its architecture appeal, the tillandsia plant has made a comeback in the horticulture world—and in a big way. Tillandsia are one of the easiest plants to grow and is the largest genus in the bromeliad family. Commonly known as air plants, they are found from jungle to rain forest to even desert environments.

Most tillandsia species use their root systems to attach themselves to trees or rocks and absorb moisture and nutrients through their leaves. This classifies them as epiphytes. Since tillandsia are epiphytes, the mounting medium you choose is limited only by your imagination. These plants are adaptable and tolerant to a wide range of environmental conditions and require minimal care.

If your tillandsia is going to be indoors, care must be taken to provide enough light and correct moisture to maintain a healthy plant. Bright light or filtered sun is recommended. To water, simply mist 2-4 times a week with a water bottle. Never leave them standing in water.

Air plants do exceptionally well in outdoor environments. A backyard tree, screened porch or pool patio will be the most likely areas to find the bright filtered light conditions that tillandsias love. Plants grown in humid outdoor environments should be watered once weekly. In drier climates, more frequent watering may be necessary. If the plant’s leaves start to curl or roll, it could be in indication of dehydration.

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