PLANT OF THE MONTH: JANUARY
Once you’ve cleared away the decorations, brighten up your home with our Plants of the Month, which are houseplants. Choose from the stunning range, along with ceramic pots and everything to help houseplants thrive including compost and plant food.
Many houseplants are low maintenance. Read the care instructions and keep an eye on whether the soil is too wet or dry for that particular variety. Most don’t need so much water over the winter.
Houseplants don’t just look good, they can help purify the air. Look out for plants that remove toxins from the air and bring humidity into the atmosphere to improve air quality. The areca palm is a good choice. It likes a light position but not direct sunlight. Water it regularly so the roots don’t dry out.
If you still have a poinsettia from Christmas, well done! Keep it out of draughts and away from direct heat. They like light and warmth as they come from much warmer climates. Give them tepid water and allow the compost to dry out between watering.
By contrast, cyclamen dislike warm rooms. If a room is warm enough for you to be comfortable then the cyclamen will be unhappy. Find a really cool spot in good light, such as a windowsill. Water by immersing the base of the pot into several inches of water and giving it a soak.
Orchids are easy to care for and can flower for months. Water the pot weekly with tepid water over the sink until it pours out of the drainage holes, or leave for half an hour in a bowl of water before draining it away. Give your orchid bright, indirect light and keep it in a cool spot. Feed it all year round with orchid fertiliser from the garden centre.
If you would like a scented houseplant, the jasmine has fragrant white flowers. It thrives in a warm room or sunny conservatory so long as it’s not in full sun. Once it has finished flowering, plant it outside when the temperature rises.