Forcing Bulbs

Ann Joy and Brian Hudelson, UW-Madison Plant Pathology Revised:  3/9/2012 Item number:  XHT1144 Wisconsin gardeners do not have to give up growing flowers during the long winter months.  Many plants grown from bulbs (also those grown from corms or rhizomes) can be forced to bloom indoors during the winter by giving them the combination of […]

Cyclamen and Broad Mites

Phil Pellitteri, UW Insect Diagnostic Lab Revised:  5/7/2010 Item number:  XHT1038 Cyclamen and broad mites are extremely small (0.3 mm long) and can be found infesting bedding plants and perennials in the greenhouse and in the garden. Broad mites commonly infest African violet, ageratum, azalea, begonia, dahlia, larkspur, gerbera, gloxinia, ivy, jasmine, impatiens, lantana, marigold, […]

African Violets

Amy Gibbs* and Brian Hudelson, UW-Madison Plant Pathology Revised:  4/26/2010 Item number:  XHT1034 What are African violets?  African violets (Saintpaulia spp.) are popular flowering houseplants in the Gesneriad family (Gesneriaceae), native to Tanzania in East Africa.  Their compact forms make them ideal for use on tabletops, windowsills, and hanging baskets.  There are many varieties of […]

Elephant Ears (Colocasia, Alocasia, and Xanthosoma)

If you want a tropical look in your garden, just add elephant ears! Lots of new ornamental cultivars of these tender perennials – that are frequently grown as annuals here in the Midwest – have been developed in recent years. To learn more about this group of plants with large, heart-shaped leaves, read this article…

Stromanthe sanguinea “Tricolor”

Tricolor is a stunning plant with dramatic variegated foliage with different colors on the upper and lower leaf surfaces. Although it is a tender tropical, it can be grown in the Midwest as a seasonal annual to add interest in beds or containers, or year-round as a houseplant. To learn more about Stromanthe sanguinea, read this article…

Flapjacks, Kalanchoe spp.

Tender succulent plants can provide architectural interest as temporary elements in the landscape outdoors in the summer and moved indoors for the winter. Flapjacks offers bold texture in its paddle-shaped leaves and often dramatic colors of the fleshy foliage. Learn more about the species of Kalanchoe commonly called flapjacks in this article…

Voodoo Lily, Amorphophallus konjac

Voodoo lily is a member of the philodendron family that grows from a tuber. Each tuber produces a single tripartite leaf on a tall, mottled stem. This unusual tropical plant is easy to grow as a seasonal conversation piece and store indoors as a dormant “bulb” during the winter. To learn more about Amorphophallus konjac, read this article…

Asparagus fern, Asparagus densiflorus

Asparagus fern is a South African native which is not a fern, but is related to the edible asparagus. The bright green, ferny foliage of this tender perennial makes it a nice houseplant and a good counterpoint to brightly colored flowers in an outdoor seasonal planting. To learn more about this plant, read this article…

Bromeliads

If you’re looking for a houseplant with attractive foliage that’s not just another leafy thing, and maybe some long-lasting flowers, consider a bromeliad. This plant family has a wide variety of species with many that are easily grown indoors if you choose a type adapted to your conditions. Learn more about this interesting group of plants in this article…

Persian Shield, Strobilanthes dyerianus

Looking to add some drama to your garden? Forget flowers and go with iridescent foliage instead for a real show-stopper! Persian shield is a tender perennial grown as an annual in our climate that has been used since Victorian times for its ornamental foliage. To learn more about this exotic, but easily grown plant, read this article…

Dendrobium lindleyi

If you’re lookign for a miniature orchid with a big flower show Dendrobium lindleyi is the one for you. This compact epiphytic species native to Southeast Asia produces spectacular showers of golden flowers. To learn more about this exotic yet easy-to-grow plant, read this article…

Cycads

Are you familiar with the ancient group of plants called cycads? These “living fossils” have been around since the time of the dinosaurs, although they are no longer as numerous as they once were. These cone-bearing plants hail primarily from the tropics, but many are easily grown as container plants. To learn more about cycads, read this article…

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