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Newbie wants an indoor flower box, possible? Please help...

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
by FlowerNewbie on February 02, 2006 03:38 AM
Hello, up to now I have had a pretty black thumb due to not being around home and not really paying attention. I am now a stay at home mom and would like to give plants / flowers another shot. I live on the 3rd floor of a three family home. I have a ton of windows! I thought of the idea of putting window boxes on the inside of my windows. I'm not in the best area so putting them outside would be kindof a waist.

What I'd like to accomplish is some beautiful flowers / plants that will look decent all year (blooming or not). I have about 5-8 windows that I'd like to do. I'm not exactly wealthy either. My home decor is sortof a blue/yellow/white spring toile french country type look. I'd like to have some flowers that go well with the decor. I also don't want to bite off more than I can chew with my first big planting project and wasting all kinds of money on dead plants. lol. Any ideas? Where to start? Layout ideas? Nicely priced boxes? Oh, I live in Boston, MA area - not really sure how to figure out zone. I found this flower that I absolutely love called "Aquilegia, Blue/White" Anybody know about this flower? Am I in over my head, or on to something?

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by Oui on February 02, 2006 10:38 PM
African Violet might be nice..Make sure you get flower boxes that do not leak, wouldn't want your floors to get damaged.

There is a topic re African Violets somewhere in this forum.
by Oui on February 02, 2006 11:38 PM
You know what else would be pretty is bulbs. Tulips and/or daffodils..etc...

You can get bulbs that are blooming already from Wal-Mart or lots of other places. And plant them in your window boxes..
by Oui on February 02, 2006 11:46 PM
Or herbs might be good..I guess that depends on how much color you want.

How many window boxes are you planning on putting in? Where in the house are you going to put them?

Maybe herbs in the kitchen.

Rosemary has a nice fresh scent...
by FlowerNewbie on February 03, 2006 03:08 AM
Thanks, oui. Boy, I've gotten such great and timely responses from this site! I posted my question on the diy website and I didn't get any responses at all. I'm very into tulips and I'll look into the violet. Someone on another category mentioned a vine that I'll look into also. Any website/store recommendations for purchases?

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by FlowerNewbie on February 03, 2006 03:11 AM
I bought a mini rose plant and have gotton four new blooms in the last 4 days. It's so beautiful. It's making my rush even more exciting. I need to get a digital so I can start posting pics of my progress with my window boxes. Oh, I also am intersted in doing the herb garden window box in my kitchen. Any advise?

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by loz on February 03, 2006 12:09 PM
Hi there....I don't know about herbs because I don't really fool with them...but I would look into doing the African Violets in some of your boxes....Nice greenery all year and flowers on and off throughout the year....

The only thing with bulbs is once they bloom then that's it.....they won't rebloom until next year as I'm sure you know...so I'd probably go with something that stays green all year long.

You might also want to think about Wandering Jews....if you buy just one you can start a zillion cuttings from it....and that would save you some money.....they are green, purple, and silverish....they don't really flower, but the leaves are very pretty and they trail beautifully over edges of planters.
by cinta on February 03, 2006 02:07 PM
I think you are going to do better with houseplants. I would go with color leaves. You can pick them up at a Lowes or HD cheap. Gardening indoors is going to be different than gardening outdoors. A pot flower is Armarylis but unless you order from the internet now it will be hard to find in the big box stores.

I like purple so I have a lot of purple..LOL
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OR

You could go with Succulents. They flower and again you have color foilage without waiting for a flower.

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These are some flowering house plants you could use The purple is Purple Passion it will bloom pink all year, the Monkey pot is a cactus that is in bloom all year also. If anything strikes you ask the names and I will name each of them.

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I would go more toward the cactus/succulent because they require less care as far as water.

If you want to see more click on my album below.

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http://www.flickr.com/photos/audwoman/

If you want the rainbow you have to put up with the rain!!
by cinta on February 03, 2006 02:22 PM
I just remembered I just brought a Christmas Cactus. They have Easter, Thanksgiving cactus also.

I have seen red, peach, white and yellow blooms.
This is a peach varigated one.
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/audwoman/

If you want the rainbow you have to put up with the rain!!
by FlowerNewbie on February 04, 2006 05:42 AM
Hey guys, thanks again for the help. I ordered about $50 of plants off of michigan bulb. Then I got like $20 off. I got a few different thing and I'll see how they do. I got; freesia, hanging basket begonia's, daisy clara curtis, tri-color flowering maple, jasmine, gardenia, yellow trumpets, dancing dolphins and a climbing shell plant. I also am wanting to do some tulips, purple passion and African violets. I just ordered on ebay 1400 coleus seeds and a 6 plant chia herb garden. The stuff from michigan won't be here till end of march beg. of april but will come pre-potted for the most part. I'm going to go ahead and start the ebay items as soon as the get here and maybe pick up a few things along the way at say the grocery store or something. I also already have my miniature yellow roses.

Any ideas on what plants I should put together and how and with what soil or any other advise would be awesome. Or tell me what you think of the selection I made. They were all listed as "indoor or houseplants" on the website so I am going to hope for the best. I do know that the bulbs only bloom once but I think it's worth it. As long as I have the greenery backup somewhere. That's why I bought the coleus. So realistically how many seeds of the stuff do I put in an area, I don't suppose I'd wanna just dump the bag in one pot, right. Don't laugh, I really haven't done none of this before.

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by cinta on February 04, 2006 01:40 PM
1400 coleus YIKES!!!! That is enough seeds to plant for the next 3 years....

The coleus seeds are very small sprinkle a couple on top of the soil, sprinkle a dusting of soil on top and press them down and keep moist. You will have a kazillion plants. Do not plant them all at the same time. So if the first batch does not make it you will have back up seeds. By April you will know what you have. You will have more than you will be able to keep alive in the house.

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http://www.flickr.com/photos/audwoman/

If you want the rainbow you have to put up with the rain!!
by Oui on February 04, 2006 11:38 PM
I tried that Chia Herb Garden...Check out my topic on Herbs..titled "Q's re Chia Herb Garden" <something like that>>

The sponge dirt is a pain in the hiney..I threw the sponge dirt out and have changed to regular potting soil and am happy I did.
by FlowerNewbie on February 06, 2006 11:44 PM
Okay guys, new update. I just bought on ebay 7 types of african violets. They are all babies already started. They are going to be shipped out today. Emergency, what should I buy for these guys. What soil, fertilizer, any other ideas, when do you think they will bloom? They ady I am buying them from says they like bottom feeding. Is that where you sit them in a pan of water instead of pouring on top?

Oh yea and for the coleus, same question what type of soil and stuff?

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by FlowerNewbie on February 07, 2006 01:20 AM
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Here's the pics of the av's I bought. I spents $50 on all 7 plants including shipping. Did I spend to much? Are they good and healthy? Guess I should of read up on them more beofore bidding. lol

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by FlowerNewbie on February 07, 2006 05:18 AM
Okay, just got back from home depot! Wow, I think this forum is as addictive as my new planting habit. Well anyway not sure if I bought the right stuff let me know.

1. 2 - 12" Window Box (it's about 5" tall and ceramic)

2. 2 - 24" Window Box (it's about 7" tall and white plastic)

I know these boxes are bigger, but I was wanting to put more than one plant in each. How many av's should I put in the 12"? If it is just to big is there a way to use it and maybe fill the bottom so not to use up the whole pot? I was thinking about using the 24" for the coleus for now.

3. 1 - Bag of Scotts Perlite

4. 1 - Bag of Scotts Potting Soil (added phosphorus)

So from what I gathered on the forums I should mix 1/2 perlite and half potting soil together. Is the phosphorus a problem? I couldn't seem to find any just plain potting soil. I found an african violet food but the hdepot lady said it wasn't needed because of the soil. But she also said she didn't know much about planting right before, what do you guys think?

I found these great redwood boxes and had them in my cart I was even going to stain them a darker wood to match my furniture and I got to the front and the wanted $20 each. So out they want and in came the $6 white plastic ones. Just couldn't do it right now maybe later. The ceramic one are gorgeous! The have blue and yellow flowers on them and are just perfect! Although a little worried about witting them on the window sills for fear they might fall. I guess I should get little tables to put in front of the windows to put them on. Boy it adds up fast, I think I'm up to almost $200 spent so far.

Gosh, I must be a pain. Sorry for all the questions, but you guys are a real help. You're like my new gardening buddies! Thanks!

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by FlowerNewbie on February 17, 2006 11:43 AM
Hey Cinta,

New update. I just got my coleus seeds (that took forever!) It did not seem like that much at all. They were in a tiny plastic bag not even a quarter of the way full. So I just put some soil and perlite in one of those casserole dishes with the plastic lid and sprinkled them on top and tapped down. It's hard to imagine that these little seeds would create so many plants... what do you think?

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by FlowerNewbie on February 17, 2006 11:44 AM
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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by tkhooper on February 17, 2006 09:48 PM
I think you will be pleasantly suprised. Did you get a packet of mixed coleus or are they all of one variety? The packet I got was all the same variety and if I had it to do again I would definitely go with the mixed. Remember to pinch them back aggressively because they can get leggy very quickly as I found out. And make sure you pinch off the flower spikes when they start. coleus are annuals and they die if they are allowed to go to seed.

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by FlowerNewbie on February 17, 2006 09:58 PM
thanks for the tips, knowing me I'd be like flower Yea - how pretty [Roll Eyes] . It was the mixed varity and look verry pretty from the pics. How do you think I could put coleus around avs in a flower box as long as I kept the av's in there (hidden) container?

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Kitten in Life  - , Tiger in Love  -
by tkhooper on February 18, 2006 02:21 AM
I've never dealt with an av in my entire life so I have no idea what to tell you. What I can tell you is the coleus are very easy grow and they get big. Their roots are tiny so they will play well with others. Coleus are happiest if they are kept just alittle moist rather than allowing them to try out like you do most house plants but that just means they will grow more in optinal conditions lol.

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by cinta on February 19, 2006 02:18 PM
Flower, you got some good advice. The coleus and AV like the same watering conditions. The coleus seem will perform for you depending on light that the receive. The AV like moist soil and filtered light. This is where you might have trouble...Colues like bright light for good color.

It will be a wait see if you have sun coleus or shade tolerant.

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http://www.flickr.com/photos/audwoman/

If you want the rainbow you have to put up with the rain!!
by TomR on February 20, 2006 10:38 PM
I will add for the heck of it that I grew an impatien plant ALL WINTER so far in a west picture window. It's been blooming all winter. What fun seeing this all winter! I started it from 2 cuttings last fall from my outside bed.

Easy!

Tom

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My memory's not as sharp as it used to be. Also, my memory's not as sharp as it used to be.
by tkhooper on February 20, 2006 10:54 PM
I planted some from seed this year and they came up. I am very tempted to keep one indoors. They are great plants. I have the double bloom variety that I just love.

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