The Best Plants and Flowers for your Home
Around this time of year, florists are inundated with customers seeking Valentine’s Day flowers to give to their loved ones. But which plants and flowers really make the best Valentine’s Day gifts?
Few things let a room down more than a dying houseplant or a wilted bunch of flowers. Many florists stock cut flowers which, if not cared for properly, will have a very short life once inside your home. But there are hundreds of beautiful flowers and plants that make ideal Valentine’s Day gifts and will last well into spring and beyond.
Hyacinths are a wonderful gift, coming as they do in a dazzling array of colours, these relatives of the lily can last as long as you are willing to care for them. Keep your hyacinths in a spot that receives plenty of light, away from drafts and radiators and try to keep them no warmer than 20 degrees. Keep their soil damp and turn occasionally to keep them growing straight and your hyacinths will enjoy a long and happy life.
Roses are perhaps the most popular traditional Valentine’s Day flowers but it is often forgotten that they are naturally outdoor flowers. Despite this, roses can be nurtured to grow in the home as well as the garden.
If you wish to plant roses in the home, choose a cool room with a lot of light, so a bright windowsill is ideal. If the room is warm, make sure you spray the roses daily with plenty of lukewarm water (using cold water can lead to mildew growth on the roses).
Begonias are another beautiful species of flowering houseplant that make ideal Valentine’s Day gifts. These brightly coloured flowers, originating in Asia, America and Africa, enjoy humid conditions, so if your house has a conservatory they would be well placed there.
Place your begonias on top of a tray of water and keep the air temperature around 20 degrees in summer, 15 degrees in winter. Keep their soil moist but not wet and aim for bright, scattered light rather than direct sunlight.
Florists will of course give you advice on how to care for the particular Valentine’s Day flowers you choose, as there can be variation in the best ways to care for them, even within the same species.