File Size: 34059 KB
Print Length: 384 pages
Publisher: Storey Publishing, LLC (October 30, 2012)
Publication Date: October 30, 2012
Sold by: Digital Services LLC
X-Ray: Not Enabled
Word Wise: Not Enabled
Lending: Not Enabled
Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Best Sellers Rank: #491,156 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store) #37 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Horticulture > Ornamental Plants #79 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Horticulture > Techniques > Container Gardening #111 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Horticulture > House Plants
Until recently my houseplant experience was limited to two spider plants and a ficus, both of which I managed to kill in about a year. I actually credit the plants for holding on so long, since they got horrible light, no fertilizer, and a little water every other month.I recently decided to give it another go, but I was fairly nervous because I didn't know anything about how to take care of houseplants in general, let alone the special requirements of the commonly available varieties. I checked out several books before settling on this one, which is a good compromise between encyclopedic coverage of different plants and practical advice about plant care. Each of the 160+ plants in the book has at least one page of information and at least one full-color photo (sometimes more). The entry for each plant gives some basic information, specific requirements and things to watch out for, and a short troubleshooting FAQ. The book is divided into three parts, on flowering houseplants, non-flowering houseplants, and houseplant care. The final section on houseplant care goes into a lot more depth on just about every topic under the sun, including soil, light, water, fertilizer, seasons, training, propagation, leaching, repotting (and potting up, and top-dressing), and has a lot of helpful illustrations to get you through. At the end of the book there is a big list of resources, including plant clubs and sources for more in-depth information.Right now I have 17 houseplants, all chosen without benefit of this book, just because they looked nice. But they're all in here. The book is NOT comprehensive, though--160 species is a lot but it is hardly exhaustive, and your local garden center or home supply warehouse probably has plants that aren't covered here.
I was so excited to get this book, and thought that it would be so helpful to me in taking care of the plants that I already had and also to help me to buy new plants. My first disappointment was that very few of the plants that I already owned seemed to be in the book. I don't have unusual house plants, just things that I have found at pretty standard stores. I was disappointed, but decided that I would go the other way around - I would choose plants that were in the book, and then go to the nursery to buy those. I chose about 30 plants out of the book as options for things to buy, but to my surprise the nursery only had a few of those. I don't know if the problem is that there are just too many houseplants for a book like this to be useful, or what.As far as content for the plants that are covered, I would give the book four stars. It's pretty good and pretty well organized. It includes information about watering and sun as well as troubleshooting for common problems (though again, the problems that I tend to have with my houseplants are often not listed). It lists ideal temperature ranges for each plant, but I wish that it also listed the range that the plants can tolerate. I don't heat my house very warm in the winter time, so I was really hoping that the book could help me to choose some plants that could make it through the winter at my house, but it doesn't. For example, I know from experience that jade plants can tolerate temperature extremes fairly well - they do fine at least as low as 45 degrees and also in the heat during the summer. But the book lists the temperature range for jades as "average room temperatures (65-75 degrees F)".
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