What plant is on your mind?

An area of The Sill dedicated to conversations about plants and gardening in the form of posted messages and threads.

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What plant is on your mind?

An area of The Sill dedicated to conversations about plants and gardening in the form of posted messages and threads.

New Post

Plant Care Tips

  • Sanseveria cylindrica
    Hello all! I purchased this mama at the sill in NYC this past February and she’s been growing like crazy! As you can see there’s a baby trying to poke through and live it’s best life but the mama plant won’t let it. Should I cut the far right leaf off the mother plant so the baby can grow wild and free? Thanks in advance!!! 
      • 1
      Paris Lalicata Hi Jarilisse! I would recommend allowing the new growth to take it's course rather then removing the stalk above it. Overtime as the new shoot matures it should grow around the mother plant rather then remaining stunted. If you'd like, you can certainly re-position the plant a little so it's not hovering right over it but I truly don't see this as a problem :)
  • Orchid plant
    Hello plant enthusiasts and experts,
    i have a beautiful orchid plant that I have loved and cared for and it’s been re-blooming every year since I bought it a few years ago. This year, like always it did grow new stems and buds but the buds didn’t bloom. I see it is growing a new leaf right now. FYI I live in San Francisco, and keep my orchid indoors and it does get morning sun through the closed windows. I feel the top soil every time before I water it. What else... I have some miss on top soil to keep it moist
  • Monstera - Aerial Roots
    My Monstera is growing aerial roots- is it best to remove them or what do I do?
      • 2
      Paris Lalicata Hi Jessica! Aerial roots are commonly found on Epiphytes (plants that grow on the body of other plants or supports) and help the plant cling to these hosts and can even help absorb moisture in the air. Since the Monstera deliciosa is an epiphyte in the wild- indoors their aerial roots can insert themselves into the soil for more support, or climb up fixtures. Training your Monstera to climb up a damp sphagnum moss pole can help encourage the plant to grow faster and larger as this is how they grow in their native habitat! This will also help give the plant more support as it grows and overtime the aerial roots will start climbing up it. Therefor these are a natural characteristic of the plant so they shouldn't be removed :)
  • Oyster plant care question
    I recently added an oyster plant to my plant family. I have read that they need to be fertilized monthy. I use miracle grow potting soil...do I still need to fertilize? Or should i use different soil and fertilize separately? If I should fertilize separately, please recommend soil and fertilizer. 
    Thank you!!
    p.s. how awesome does she look in that purple pot? 💜
      • 2
      Paris Lalicata Hi Melissa- I'm loving the purply vibe your Oyster plant is bringing to your home! Any standard potting mix will work for this plant. As long as the plant is receiving plenty of bright indirect light and actively growing it'll be safe to fertilize once a month. You ever read on a bag of potting mix "Feeds up to 6 months?" This is because there is already macro-nutrients (N,P,K) within the soil that'll help it thrive. Fertilizing in the growing season is simply to give plants a nutrient boost for optimal growth, and replenish any nutrients the plant has already extracted from the soil. The Oyster plant (Tradescantia spathacea) would be fine with an all balanced fertilizer diluted by half the recommended limit!
  • BUGS ON MY PLANTS
    Anyone have a good natural remedy for bugs? I have so many plants in my room and these little flies have just started becoming an issue. Help!
      • 2
      Janine G Gnats like wet soil. If I let mind dry out a bit I don't have too many problems. I have heard of the mosquito bits. I also learned this trick that the gnats don't like. I have a Birds Nest fern that I am struggling with since I got it in the mail during winter. ( My dumb idea) I don't keep the soil wet, I keep a dish of water near it. The soil in the pot.. I turn it over and mess it up frequently. In a circle around the plant, I run my finger through it as gnats like to lay eggs down inside about an inch or so. I think it ruins their plans. I haven't had too much trouble lately but I have figured out that the more moist the soil, the more chance of gnats. I think the mosquito bits are a great idea. I have used them in water fountains and bird baths. Don't water so often if you can help it. Good luck. It's frustrating.
      • 1
      MALINDA The little flies are most likely fungus gnats. You can take care of them by adding mosquito bits to the soil. Summer Rayne Oakes just did a whole video about them on YouTube. She lists several different ways of dealing with them at different stages of their life cycle.
      • 1
      dekadaye I use a neem oil spray - distilled water, a couple drops of dish soap, and several drops of neem oil. I spray affected plants at night - the top soil and underside of the leaves. I do think weekly and usually see a big change after 2 weeks.

      I also make sure to aerate soil so it can dry out and fungus gnats dont have wet soil to plant more eggs.

      I have 2 plants that are particularly susceptible. I just ordered mosquito bits on amazon. Hopefully it works!
    • 1 more comment
  • Begonia Pavonina Care Information
    I bought this beautiful peacock begonia . I know it's a high maintenance plant but don't find much care information online. Any information you can share will be greatly appreciated. She is quiet expensive and gorgeous. Thanks.
      • 1
      Erin What a beauty! I don't have any personal experience with this plant - aside from it being on my wish list ;)
      • 2
      Pei WHAT A BEAUTY!! I have a love-hate relationship with Begonia. They are such a beautiful family, but somewhat finicky. In general, Begonia prefers bright indirect light (a few hours of morning sun is ok too). I found east or north facing window work the best. You want to water it thoroughly and make sure the soil dries out about 1" to 2" deep before you water it again. In addition, begonia likes high humidity. But DO NOT mist it as the leaves get fungal infections very easily. I will suggest to group plants together or invest in a humidifier. Hope this helps :)
  • Do you aerate your plants' potting mix?
    I saw the post below from Darryl Cheng on @houseplantjournal on Instagram, and am wondering if anyone else swears by aerating their houseplants' potting mix? 

    https://www.instagram.com/p/BySjEGWB81o/
      • 1
      Nicole I nearly killed my maidenhair fern by not aerating it. The water apparently was running down the inside edges of the pot and the majority of the roots stayed dry. Then one day, plant looked great in the morning, and when I came home, it was crispy all over.
      • 1
      Pei I don't! I found fingers work just about the same. Or I'd let my plants tell me if they are thirsty. For example, I will hold off the water until they are "slightly" droopy.
  • Baby jade succulent
    Hi how can I help this poor plant? It looks like it's thirsty but I've been giving it good amount of water. It also has some white spots on it. I don't know what these spots are. Help!!
      • 1
      Erin Is it possible to get a close up photo of the white spots? They could be mealy bugs which might be the cause of it's unhappiness - https://www.thesill.com/blogs/pests/bug-off-mealybugs

      Overall it looks OK from the photo you shared though! It's definitely wrinkly but you mentioned you've been watering it thoroughly so I'd be cautious about watering it more. For now, I'd recommend pruning off any dying foliage and letting the potting mix dry out completely in bright direct light.
    • 2 more comments
  • Ivy help!
    I bought this ivy online and it came in a small nursery pot healthy. I left it in the nursery pot for about 2 weeks to acclimate. It started to wilt shortly after getting her. I monitored my watering cause it looked to me like it was a watering issue. Then I decided to repot it to a 4" pot and check for any root rot, nothing bad there. It's been another week and no signs of change. It also only has one brown leaf and isn't getting worse but isn't getting better. I'm a little stumped. I've also checked for pests and haven't seen anything of concern there. Could this be a light or humidity issue?
      • 1
      Pei Agreed with [278933,Erin]! Ivy requires indirect bright light (a few hours of direct sun will do too!). How much water do you give it each time, btw?
      • 1
      Erin Hi Stephanie! How much light is it receiving? I've found most ivies to require brighter light then you'd think when grown indoors.
  • Snake plant - please halp!
    This snake plant is turning yellow for some reason. Does anyone have any care tips or suggestions? It is typically kept in the shade in my bedroom. 

    Do I just need to repot this? 
      • 2
      Nicole It looks like it may have been over-watered....I'd take it out of the pot and see if the roots are rotted. Pull off any mushy, unhealthy roots and put it in a new pot. Then fingers crossed!
      Snake plants like to be dry- Water maybe every 2-3 weeks, even less in the winter. They can tolerate low light but will grow better in bright indirect light.
  • Silver Philodendron Yellow Spots
    I am a new plant owner and bought this cutie about a month ago. After a week or so, it started getting tan spots on 2 of the older(large) leaves. I assumed it was burn from the sun from where it was before I bought it, but they’ve yellowed more. Is it burn marks or is it something else that I should be concerned about (fungus/bacteria)? 
      • 1
      Pei How much water and sun does it get? Sometimes it's normal to loose one or two leaves for a new plant acclimating into its new home (your home!). [301633,Kate Beckmann]
  • Alocasia Polly House Care
    The Sill sent this to me maybe 12 days ago and I repotted it maybe 4 days ago. The leaves have turned color and the stems are starting to wrinkle. It also lost a couple leaves already.  I repotted from a 4" to 6". With a mix of potting soil, sand, and white drainage stuff (peat something maybe). What else can I do?
      • 1
      Pei How much sun and water does it get??? Have you watered it since you repotted it?
  • dracaena marginata needs help!
    guys! the lower stocks of my dracaena marginata are not doing too well. the leaves are falling off (only on the lower trunks?). it was getting some direct sunlight during the morning and bright indirect sunlight throughout the day so thought it might be needing more sunlight so I moved it to my living room but alas it doesn't seem to be helping. I water ~2xs a month since it doesn't get a ton of direct light. 

    can someone help me?!
      • 1
      Erin Not sure if it's the same issue but my dracaena had similar visual symptoms and I think it was from overwatering!
  • MEALYBUGS?
    These white stuff keep coming back. I clean my plant with alcohol almost every other day and these keeps coming back. I dont want to give up on my goldfish plant. What is it? What's the best way to ELIMINATE them? Please help me safe my plant :)
      • 1
      Megan Sangimino Good luck!!
      • 0
      karen sanchez Hello my orchid had a bad case. Mixed Dawn Detergent with a little water put in spray bottle,,let it sit a bit then wash with water isolate the little guy till cured
      • 2
      Pei :( oh no!

      My guess is you have not been treating the plant thoroughly. I would repeat the alcohol treatment, but make sure you get EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM. After the alcohol wipe, I would also hose the plant down with water. Good luck!!!
    • 2 more comments
  • Schefflera Leaf Discoloration
    My Schefflera has been growing pretty steadily since I got it months ago, but I noticed some of its leaves have this discoloration where there seems to be gaps in the darker greens. I am 99% certain it isn't from a pest, but curious if anyone knows what causes it.

    Is it a watering thing? Is it a nutrient thing? I have fertilized it maybe twice in the past month and a half - basically every other watering - but I think I halved the dosage and maybe even halved the suggested frequency.

    Thoughts? Something I should just ignore given all else seems to be going well?
      • 2
      Pei Not sure what that was. But I flush the soil of all my plants occasionally to wash away any unwanted buildups (like salts, menerals, and etc..) if you think the fertilizer is the reason. Either way, I would ignore tbh considering the plant is happy overall. Sometimes plants are weird (aren't we all?) haha!