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Outdoor house plants

 
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GermanStar



Joined: 17 Jun 2010
Posts: 117
Location: Fountain Hills, AZ

PostPosted: Thu Jun 17, 2010 6:32 pm    Post subject: Outdoor house plants Reply with quote

I'm in Fountain Hills and have just redone pretty much everything outside. In addition to Emu Bushes, Salvia, Agave, assorted Cacti, Lavender, Jasmine, Flax, etc., I planted a couple of house plants outside, and hope they survive the winter. One is a Sansevieria, which shares an enormous sheltered planter box with a Tropical Bird of Paradise and a Dwarf Fan Palm. The other is an African Milk Tree. Ironically, since I redid everything 3 months ago, these are my two fastest growing plants, and I now feel particularly vested in their survival.

I haven't seen Sansevieria growing outdoors in the Valley, but I know it to be one of toughest, hardest-to-kill house plants in the world, so I'm hoping it isn't too cold-sensitive, and would appreciate feedback from anyone who knows. I have seen Milk Trees outdoors, there is a beautiful 6-footer on the next block, and I swear I'm going to ring the guy's bell to ask him about it before long. I know they have a reputation for being extremely intolerant of freezing temperatures.

So, any opinions on my chances for these guys living to see next spring?

Really, really nice Website, btw.
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phoenixtropicals
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Joined: 06 May 2008
Posts: 1177
Location: Mesa Arizona

PostPosted: Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sansevieria. That is a good question. The only place I have seen them is in planters in shopping malls. I kind of doubt they'll take the heat. Let us know.

African Milk Tree. Another plant I have no idea about. Worth a try I think. If your neighbor has one growing outside it will probably work. However, I'm guessing Fountain Hills is a far amount colder than here in Mesa in winter. So, I recommend you cut a branch from your cactus, let it dry out for a week in the house and pot it up as a back up plan.
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GermanStar



Joined: 17 Jun 2010
Posts: 117
Location: Fountain Hills, AZ

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2010 10:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd be surprised if the heat bothers it, but we'll find out soon enough I suppose. My fear is cold. It's only been about 6 weeks since I threw the small Sansevieria in and it's already got three runners coming up. The planter box is well-sheltered with a 15' overhang and faces SW. If that sounds like a problem for it and the Bird of Paradise, the box has a substantial Palo Verde tree facing it, effectively filtering the afternoon light. I also have another house plant in the vicinity, a potted and pedestalled Asparagus Fern.

My hope is that the planter box might provide the plants a little extra warmth on those cold winter nights, but I really have no idea.

Good idea for the Milk Tree, although I really have no place it would survive indoors if I can't provide it with adequate protection from the cold. And if I have to start a new one outside every year, it will never get more than 2' tall. Heck who knows, I might do it anyways....

And yes, FH is likely 3-5 cooler. We had no freezing nights last winter -- not one, but I do recall the hard freeze in '07. I didn't chronicle the event as you did, but I do recall taking note of all the damage in my yard and around the neighborhood.



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Last edited by GermanStar on Fri Jun 18, 2010 8:34 pm; edited 1 time in total
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phoenixtropicals
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Joined: 06 May 2008
Posts: 1177
Location: Mesa Arizona

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2010 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice landscaping job. It looks really good.
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GermanStar



Joined: 17 Jun 2010
Posts: 117
Location: Fountain Hills, AZ

PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 3:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Update: The Sansevieria is doing very well indeed, growing like mad, and has now thrown off a fourth runner. The heat doesn't bother it a lick (drought-resistant, tropical succulent, I didn't think it would). I've also seen it listed as Zone 9, good down to 28 for brief stints, so I'm pretty sure it's OK in my sheltered planter box. Really a spectacular accent plant, apparently under-utilized in the Valley. Hopefully, I'll be posting pics of 4' shoots by this time next summer.

Turns out my African Milk Tree is in fact, a Candelabra Tree (E. ingens), which is just as susceptible to cold, and considered Zone 10, but a local nursery swears up and down they just throw freeze cloth over them 2 or 3 times each winter. I'm hopeful, but still not convinced.
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GermanStar



Joined: 17 Jun 2010
Posts: 117
Location: Fountain Hills, AZ

PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 9:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I initially planted the Bird of Paradise and the Sansevieria in the same general space inside a large planter box, with the thought that should one fail and not the other, the space would still be well occupied. At this juncture, it appears the Bird of Paradise is failing, albeit slowly, and the Sansevieria is thriving. Unchecked (assuming it survives our winters), it could easily spread and fill the space now occupied by the Bird of Paradise within 2-3 years.

OTOH, I'd still like to see both survive. The space receives less than an hour of direct sun around noontime, then filtered sun through the afternoon, after full shade in the AM. It's on two #1 drip emitters for 90 minutes twice per week, soil is covered with 2"-3" mulch. Bottom line is old leaves are folding up faster than they're being replaced. Also, new leaves are smaller than older established leaves. What's the prognosis? Too much light? Not enough water? Insufficient nutrients?

I was at Home Depot today. They had 5-gal. Bird of Paradise for $15 that were twice as nice as mine, and 15-gal for $39, one had a fresh flower. I saw all these nice plants and it really drove home how poorly mine is doing after 6 months.
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phoenixtropicals
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Joined: 06 May 2008
Posts: 1177
Location: Mesa Arizona

PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 10:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not enough sun I think. BOP's like all day sun. They do go dormant in the winter and loose their leaves in the winter but its too early for that now.
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GermanStar



Joined: 17 Jun 2010
Posts: 117
Location: Fountain Hills, AZ

PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 10:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think we're taking about two different plants. My Sansevieria is sharing a planter box with a Tropical Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia reginae).

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phoenixtropicals
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Joined: 06 May 2008
Posts: 1177
Location: Mesa Arizona

PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, yes. I was thinking of the Red Bird Of Paradise. I read your description of the plant again. Actually, it sounds like it is doing fine. Since the plant was probably originally grown in a greenhouse you are going to see the leaves get smaller in our dry climate. Also, its the end of summer so you can expect a tropical bird of paradise to look a bit ragged this time of year.
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GermanStar



Joined: 17 Jun 2010
Posts: 117
Location: Fountain Hills, AZ

PostPosted: Fri Sep 17, 2010 7:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, we'll hang in there with it then. I had never seen a flower before live and in person. I've never seen anything remotely like it.
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obietrice88



Joined: 21 Feb 2012
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have outdoor house plants, but in the winter I bring them into my garage because the cold usually kills them if I don't. I don't want to have to plant seeds again, so I don't mind moving them indoors for the winter.
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