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Why Won’t My Christmas Cactus Bloom?


“My Christmas cactus hasn’t bloomed in 2 years. It gets light from the sliding glass door on the south side of the house with a patio and garage, so it does not directly get light. Any suggestions?” Question from Victoria of Adrian, Michigan
Answer: There are several reasons why a Christmas or holiday cactus (Schlumbergera buckleyi and S. truncata) may fail to bloom. Here are […]

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Why Are the Leaves on My Potted Lemon Tree Disfigured?

Why Are the Leaves on My Potted Lemon Tree Disfigured?
“Ever since I started my lemon tree from seed, its leaves appear cut around the edges. I’m not overwatering. Today I gave it Jobe’s Organics Fruit & Citrus fertilizer and treated with Bonide Systemic Insect Control, both of these being used for the first time, as I haven’t done anything but water and mist it since […]

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What is the Best Soil for Fiddle-Leaf Fig?

What is the Best Soil for Fiddle-Leaf Fig?
“I’m trying to keep my poor fiddle-leaf fig alive. Can you recommend a potting soil for this house plant?”  Question from Ann of Mesa, Arizona
Answer: This African-native fig (Ficus lyrata) naturally exists in lowland tropical rain forests where the soil drains well but is also somewhat loamy and remains evenly moist. The plants also grow best in potting […]

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Which is Better, Hydroponic or Potted Indoor Vegetables?


“Why should I continue to use Black Gold products for my indoor gardening projects, rather than switching entirely to hydroponics?” Question from Vicki of Brownsburg, Indiana
Answer: It depends on your home, budget, and goals, but I favor soil growing for lots of reasons. Either way, both methods have value. To help you make up your own mind, here are the plusses and minuses of […]

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Can I Grow Vegetables Indoors in a Sunny Room?

Can I grow vegetables in this sunny room?
“Is it possible to grow any vegetables indoors in a sunny room with a grow light? I live in NE PA and we have long cold winters. I would love to grow veggies over the winter. I have a room that I think would work.” Question from Melanie or Susquehanna, Pennsylvania
Answer: What a nice space! You can certainly […]

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I Need Good Sunny Window Box Plants

Lovin’ Life – Timeless™ Fire combo by Proven Winners®. (Image thanks to Proven Winners®)
“I have full sun for the majority of the day at my home. I’m wanting to put up a window box on the front of my house, but I’m not sure what plants would succeed. Help is appreciated! Thank you!” Question from Melissa of Ludington, Michigan
Answer: There are lots of great plants […]

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How Do I Remove and Manage Mealybugs?


“What is the best way to remove ground mealybug or should I dispose of the whole plant?” Question from Erin of Conover, North Carolina
Answer: Mealybugs can be overcome. It just takes a little time and patience. The main reason is that one has to eradicate both the adults as well as the juvenile crawlers, which are almost invisible to the eye. Outdoors, ladybugs and […]

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How Do You Grow Cilantro Indoors?

How Do You Grow Cilantro Indoors?
“What is the best practice to ensure a window-sill cilantro plant will thrive? I have a green thumb and can grow or rehab practically any plant/flower/herb/garden. However, each time I’ve purchased a cilantro plant, it wilts after a few months. I only water when dry. Thank you!” Question from Ann of Raleigh, North Carolina
Answer: Cilantro (Coriandrum sativum) is a short-lived […]

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Why Does My Pilea Have Black Spots on Its Lower Leaves?


“Why is my Chinese money plant (Pilea peperomioides) getting black spots? It’s almost always the lower leaves.” Question from Katherine of Las Vegas, Nevada
Answer: There are several reasons why the semi-succulent Chinese money plant gets black spots. First, consider what it needs to grow. The South China native naturally grows in shaded forests in well-drained soils among damp rocks at higher altitudes. It likes […]

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How Do I Repot and Care for My Plumeria?


My Plumeria needs repotting. What is the best soil and pot type?  What amount of sunlight is best – morning, noon? Watering schedule? Question from Jean of Diamond Bar, California
Answer: Frangipani or Plumeria (Plumeria species) shrubs are tropicals that are native to Mexico, Central America, and South America. There are many species that have been bred to create a fine array of colorful varieties–nearly […]

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