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Humidity

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by John From Canada on January 05, 2004 11:58 PM
Is misting a plant like pseduo-humidity? Or to increase the humidity in a room, would it be recommended to have a humidifier?
I have 3 large tropical plants and a smaller one, as well as an English Ivy. (These are my first plants) I'm wondering if my room is going to be humid enough, and what i can do to help them along.
(How do you know how much humidity is in a room?)
Thanks

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John
by barleychown on January 06, 2004 12:31 AM
Just to help those who will be by to answer your questions...do you happen to know what type of plants you have? Did they come with the 'tags'?

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We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are.
by John From Canada on January 06, 2004 12:47 AM
Well i know one is an English Ivy (Hedera Helix).
However, the rest are simply tagged as "Tropical Upright".
One looks like a palm tree.
Another looks like another type of palm.
And the other is beyond me.

Hope this helps.

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John
by weezie13 on January 06, 2004 12:53 AM
Got a way to get a picture to us, John???

Weezie

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by John From Canada on January 06, 2004 12:58 AM
I've determined that one of the palms is a Kentia Palm (Howea Fosteriana).

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John
by barleychown on January 06, 2004 01:15 AM
Gee, palms and ferns are just about the only things I don't have! [Big Grin]

I do have ivy though, 'cause I like to 'shape' it. It seems to be a pretty easy-going plant. [thumb]

Someone else should be along to answer about the palm, soon! [grin]

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We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are.
by Will Creed on January 06, 2004 02:31 AM
Hi John,

Like most of the more common houseplants, Kentia palms and Hedera ivies do not require high humidity. It certainly doesn't hurt, but the benefits are marginal. No reason to knock yourself out over the humidity.

Misting is NOT effective at raising humidity, unless you mist twice an hour every day. A room humidifier is effective. Pebble trays filled with water and placed under plants are also moderately effective in raising humidity in the immediate vicinity.

Here is another tip: Don't repot or fertilize either of these plants
by John From Canada on January 06, 2004 04:30 AM
Alright, that helps.
I do have a question about another plant. It's a palm, looks very similar to a palm tree. It has a trunk and then the leaves sort of pour out of the top of the stump like a fountain. The leaves have white/yellowy strips down the center. (Not sure what the plant is called)
The leaves are starting to wilt.. and they've been in their new home for about 4-5 hours.
I'm wondering if i over-watered or what. It's definately not looking as healthy as it did.
Thanks for all the prompt replies.

The Kentia, the Hedera and the other mystery plant seem to be doing well.
I shouldn't fertilize? Aren't I supposed to fertilize once a month or so?

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John
by Jiffymouse on January 06, 2004 05:23 PM
john, the wilted one sounds something like some variety of dracaena. if it is the case (or even if it isn't) the best thing you can do for it is to check the drainage on the pot to ensure that the soil actually drains. if you repotted it, you need to make sure that the pot is only just large enough for it and that it has adequate drainage.
by Will Creed on January 07, 2004 03:38 AM
Hi John,

I agree with Jiffy that the mystery plant is in the Dracaena family. Probably variegated D. pleomele relexa or maybe a variegated D. marginata.

I don't understand the reference to a "new home." If you mean you repotted it, then that is most likely the problem. Contary to popular wisdom, repotting is usually not a good idea, especially for newly acquired plants. Unnecessary repotting adds extra soil that tends to retain moisture for too long and causes the roots to rot. Repotting also tends to shock the plant.

Monthly fertilizing is something that you do for plants that are growing under ideal conditions, such as in a greenhouse. In the far-from-ideal conditions of the home, a plant's growth rate and its need for larger pots, water, and fertilizer are all dramatically reduced.

In general, the less you do for your houseplants, the better off they will be. So go easy on the repotting, water, and fertilizer. Concentrate on getting the best possible light for each of your plants. That is something you can do that will make a big difference. The plants that you have mentioned so far all do best in very bright indirect light. This is what you get right in front of an unobstructed north or east facing window.
by TomR on January 07, 2004 07:00 PM
quote:
Originally posted by John From Canada:
Is misting a plant like pseduo-humidity? Or to increase the humidity in a room, would it be recommended to have a humidifier?
I have 3 large tropical plants and a smaller one, as well as an English Ivy. (These are my first plants) I'm wondering if my room is going to be humid enough, and what i can do to help them along.
(How do you know how much humidity is in a room?)
Thanks

Misting does absolutely nothing unless you do it every 10 minutes, 24 hours a day. Get a humidifier. Make sure yo buy one that's big enough for the room your plants are in. A 2 gallon one will not raise the humidity much for instance in a 18 X 12 foot room.

A humidifier is THE way to go.

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 John From Canada on January 07, 2004 11:46 PM
Drainage, you say..
What constitutes apropriate drainage? Thus far I have the pot sitting on the floor.

The new home is that I took them from the store to my basement suite. How often do you water exactly? I hear once every week, or once every two weeks, the label says "let the soil dry completely, then water."

I have relatively low light levels in my room, and i'm not sure if I really have enough light. What will lack of light cuase the plants to do?

I think I will start a new post entitled "Help John Grow".. haha.. I need to learn alot. I've never gardened before in my life.
Thanks again.

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John
by Jiffymouse on January 07, 2004 11:53 PM
john, you are doing the right thing in that you are asking the right questions. by drainage, the question is this, does the pot have holes in the bottom, and if you give it a good soaking, does the water run out? hopefully you answer yes to both questions, if not, you have to fix that problem before anything else can be done to help your plants.
it is amazing how much light a plant wants and how little they will survive on. so, i would just play it by ear now that you already have the plants.
do you have any windows where they are? any natural light is better than the best lightbulb light. good luck and keep on asking and keeping us posted!
by John From Canada on January 08, 2004 08:15 AM
Hmm.. The plants have holes at the bottom. I'm not sure if the water is running out the bottom. I havent watered them in a day or two and the soil is bone dry. I'm afraid of overwatering, so I don't want to soak them again, unless I'm supposed to.

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John
by Jiffymouse on January 08, 2004 04:59 PM
john, if the soil is bone dry, put them in a pot or tub of water, let them sit for an hour or so, then let them completely drain. then you can start on a regular watering cycle. depending on the plant that could be every couple of days to as little as once a month. there are a lot of variables in the watering, but bone dry is not good for any of the plants you have described.

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