Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - August 14, 2009

From: Brooklyn, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Container Gardens, Cacti and Succulents
Title: Native plants for a New York, NY apartment?
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, What are some native Mid-Atlantic/New England plants that can be grown well indoors? I live in an apartment in New York City and have recently realised that the plants I've been growing are all foreign (and in one case, potentially invasive) species. I'd like to change that, but I can't find any information on native houseplants anywhere.

ANSWER:

We love your train of thought!  Unfortunately, with the exception of cacti and succulents, very few North American native plants are well-suited for indoor gardening.  Some people have success growing some woodland plants in terrariums, but even those are rarely long-lived.  About eleven species of Sedum are native to New York and the surrounding states.  You might have some success culturing a kind of rock garden in your apartment window using some of those lovely and interesting groundcovers.

 

From the Image Gallery


Woodland stonecrop
Sedum ternatum

More Container Gardens Questions

Plants for hanging flower boxes from Austin
July 27, 2013 - I have two long flower boxes 17" x 15" x 25 feet long one on the north side of the apt and one on the south made of metal suspended about four feet from the ground. One will get the morning sun and ...
view the full question and answer

Disappearing oranges from Satsuma orange in Austin
June 25, 2008 - I had many tiny future oranges on my Satsuma Orange Tree until a few days ago. Suddenly, all were gone except one. They weren't on the ground and the tree itself seems incredibly healthy. It is gr...
view the full question and answer

Container Gardening with Texas Native Plants
February 10, 2007 - I live in an apartment in Austin, Texas and want adorn my balcony with a window box this spring. Could you recommend flowers that I could plant that do not need a lot of space to flourish? Also how ma...
view the full question and answer

Non-native and invasive bamboos from Staten Island, NY
May 19, 2013 - Hi I put some black Bamboo and some bias Bamboo in a large container about 6ft by 2ft and ht 18 inches .How can I get this Bamboo to thrive ? Suggestions on types of plant food or fertilizer or ant t...
view the full question and answer

Maximilian sunflowers in a container in Pflugerville, TX
April 26, 2010 - Can Maximilian sunflowers be grown in a container? How deep and wide would it need to be? Am considering growing them in a stock tank elevated on bricks, with drain holes.
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.