By now the outdoor gardening is mostly done – except, perhaps, for pruning and raking. It’s time to turn to indoor plants.

Many people say they can’t grow houseplants. I suggest they start with an easy one – dracaena.

The reason many Mainers fail at growing houseplants is that our homes don’t have enough light: we’re relatively far north so get scant winter light, and the state is often cloudy come winter, too. But while dracaena thrives in medium light, it will survive even in low light.

The plant comes in a number of different colors. It has long, strappy leaves, which are variegated, so they’re interesting to look at. While dracaena can produce flowers, it usually doesn’t when grown indoors. Over time, a lot of time, a dracaena could grow tall enough to reach your ceiling; you can cut it back without harming it any.

Dracaena likes evenly moist conditions, but – as I learned from “Houseplants: The Complete Guide to Choosing, Growing, and Caring for Indoor Plants” by Lisa Eldred Steinkopf – it doesn’t like fluoride. Use rainwater. (She suggests bottled water, but I wouldn’t go that far. I’d melt snow first.) You can find dracaena at most shops that specialize in houseplants.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

filed under: