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Ask the Plant Expert: Are My Bushes Dead?

Dear Plant Expert:

dying bushI just moved into a house about a month ago in Denton,Tx. There are several of these types of bushes and there is no sign that they are still alive. The twigs and branches snap off very easily. If they are dead is there anyway to save them?

Thank you for your help!


Plant Expert Reply:


To see if the plant is still viable, scratch the trunk of the tree with your fingernail or lightly with a pocket knife. If you see green tissue, the plant should be OK. Then simply trim the the dead branches back until you see green tissue.

Thank You for Your Question,

Jamie Jamison Adams

FSN Plant Expert

Top 5 Houseplants for Mom

With Mother’s Day right around the corner, we are looking at some unique gift ideas. Houseplants are not a gift commonly associated with Mother’s Day, but they can be an exceptional addition to your mom’s home decor.

  • Green Houseplant Peace lily5. Peace Lily

Always elegant and beautiful, whether it’s in bloom or not, the peace lily is one of the most popular houseplants. It does not require too much sun and is ideal for indoor living. The large, dark green leaves look beautiful with any decor.

Peace lilies are easy to care for, making them a great companion houseplant for anyone. The main concern when caring for a peace lily is watering, but it will let you know when it’s thirsty by its dropping leaves.

Click here for more Peace Lily Care Information




  • Heartleaf Philodendron4. Heart-leaf Philodendron

The heart-leaf Philodendron is another great houseplant for mom. Not only is it easy to take care of, the leaves are heart-shaped! What better symbol of love for your mom than a heart-shaped houseplant? This plant is so easy to grow, it will literally live in only water. The Heart-leaf philodendron is a vine that can hang happily from a basket, or be draped across a bookshelf.

The Heart-leaf Philodendron is a hardy plant that thrives in partial shade at moderate temperatures. It’s a native tropical plant and likes its soil to be moist, but not soggy.

For more information, visit Caring for Heart-leaf Philodendron




  • Sansevieria Houseplant3. Mother-In-Law’s Tongue (Sansevieria)

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5 Houseplants With Heart

The day of love, Valentine’s, is almost upon us. Most of the time, it’s pretty easy to buy Valentine’s Day gifts. Most people are satisfied with the traditional gifts of flowers, dinner, jewelry and the like. However.. there are a few among us who are not so swayed by sweetness. If your girl is just not the romance type, or your hubby thinks “flowers are for girls” then this suggestion is for you!

There’s nothing like flowers and plants on Valentines Day. They bring a life and energy with them you won’t get from any other gift. If your Boo says boo to a bouquet, why not give the gift of green via a lush houseplant that is full of heart — heart-shaped leaves that is!

Here are a few heart-shaped suggestions to get you started:

1. Heart-leaf Philodendron

Heartleaf PhilodendronThe Heartleaf Philodendron is known as the sweetheart plant because of the unique heart shape of its leaves. With the many variations of heart-leaf Philodendrons available, there is sure to be one that will stand out to you. You might like the lush green leaves, or perhaps the varieties with splashes of bright yellow color on the leaves. These heart-leaf plant is easy to care for and it’s evergreen vines, if allowed, will grow up ledges or walls, enhancing any room.

However, if your Sweetie has cats, other pets or small children who would be prone to eating the leaves, this may not be a good choice. This plant is toxic if ingested.

Check out this article for more information on how to care for Heart-leaf Philodendron

2. Flowering Cyclamen

Cyclamen (Cyclamen persicum)This is a small houseplant with big dreams. It’s heart-shaped foliage is beautifully colored on it’s own, but the up-swept petals of the flower add striking color that elevates this houseplant to favorite status. These plants usually bloom in late winter or early spring and are sweetly scented, making them a perfect Valentine’s Day gift.

This plant is also mildly toxic and you should take precautions to keep this plant away from pets and small children.

Check out this article for more information about how to care for a Florist Cyclamen


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The Meaning of Lucky Bamboo Numbers

Lucky bamboo is a favorite houseplant to give to someone to say “good luck!” It could be just before a test, for a grand opening, or just for fun. These little shoots make fantastic companions because they are so tolerant and easy to care for.

Meanings of Lucky Bamboo Numbers

Use various numbers of bamboo to cause different types of effects. Here are a few popular Multiple Stems of Lucky Bamboogroupings:

  • 1 Stalk – simplicity, meaningful life
  • 2 Stalks – best for luck in love and marriage
  • 3 Stalks – happiness (Most popular)
  • 4 Stalks – almost never given. (Four could draw negative energy, according to Chinese culture)
  • 5 Stalks – academic achievement, creativity
  • 6 Stalks – blessing
  • 7 Stalks – health
  • 8 Stalks – luck in wealth
  • 9 Stalks – good fortune and over all luck
  • 10 Stalks – completion or perfection
  • 21 Stalks – all-purpose blessing

Lucky Bamboo & Feng Shui

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The Easter Lily

Easter Lily

Easter Lilies (Lilium longiflorum)With Easter just around the corner, we had to highlight the holiday’s favorite flower – the Easter lily!

Easter Lily History

The lily has long symbolized purity, virtue and faith for Christians. Medieval depictions of the Blessed Virgin Mary often show her holding these flowers and even in King Solomon’s Temple there were designs of lilies on the columns.Lilies were also found growing in the Garden of Gethsemane after Christ’s agony. Tradition has it that the beautiful white lilies sprung up where drops of Christ’s sweat fell to the ground in his final hours of sorrow and deep distress. For this reason, you will see Easter lilies on decorating pulpits, alters and more in churches all across the world.

Easter Lily Today

The regal, white lily is a fitting symbol of the greater meaning of Easter. Gracing millions of homes and churches, the flowers embody joy, hope and life. Whether given as a gift or enjoyed in your own home, the Easter Lily serves as a beautiful reminder that Easter is a time for rejoicing and celebrating.

By Louise Lewin Matthews, this poem captures the spiritual essence of the Easter Lily:

Easter morn with lilies fair
Fills the church with perfumes rare,
As their clouds of incense rise,
Sweetest offerings to the skies.
Stately lilies pure and white
Flooding darkness with their light,
Bloom and sorrow drifts away,
On this holy hallow’d day.
Easter Lilies bending low in the golden afterglow,
Bear a message from the sod
To the heavenly towers of God.

-Louise Lewin Matthews

Whether you’re tending an Easter lily from years past, buying a new one for yourself, or sending a lily as an Easter gift, always always always use a real local florist when you buy plants and flowers. You can use Flower Shop Network’s handy florist finder to find a florist near you!

Add Fresh Spring Color With African Violets

Send Spring Color With African Violets

Looking for an easy way to add fresh color and interest to a room in your home? What better way to do that and bring spring indoors than with flowers?

African VioletsYou can’t go wrong with African Violets. Not only are they gorgeous, brightly colored and showy, they are safe around kids and pets! With an array of colors including violet, blue, red, white, pink, cream, soft yellow, and bi- or multicolored flowers, it’s easy to see why they are a favorite houseplant. Care of African violets is relatively easy and requires an environment of bright to moderate, but consistent light in an evenly moist and humid atmosphere. (Great for bathrooms and kitchens)

Where To Find African Violets

For the best selection of house plants, such as the African Violet, head on over to your local flower shop! You can rest assured they have had the best of care there. If you do not know your local florist, use FSN’s handy florist finder!

Make A Friend: Get A House Plant

House Plant Friend

Everyone could use a new friend in their lives. It’s not always easy to meet new people, and pets are a big commitment, that’s where house plants come in! These green plants do so much for us: boost energy levels, fresh air and caring for them makes us feel so good.

Maybe you know someone who lives alone, with assisted living or a hospice? A house plant will make an excellent friend for them to love and take care of.

Where to find the very best house plants

Your local florists, that’s where! For the best selection and best quality of  house plants, check out your local flower shop. Your florist will be able to guide you as to which plants are easier for beginners and experts. This will help you choose just the right plant for you, your friend or a loved one.

By getting your house plant from a local florist, you can rest assured it has been well-cared for. Some local florists also go the extra mile to tastefully decorate the plant’s container or even the plant itself.

Quick Tips For House Plant Care

The level of care needed for your house plant really depends upon the plant itself. Your florist will be able to help you choose a plant for your level of commitment. Here are some general plant care tips, but be sure to ask your florist for a more exact care plan.

  • Keep Them Watered – generally, plants like to be in moist, but not wet soil. Stick your finger into the soil to the first knuckle, if it is dry to the touch, it’s time for water. Watering could be every day to once a week.
  • Keep Them Hydrated – A lot of house plants originate from very humid conditions. Most house plants enjoy a good misting once a day or every other day.
  • Lighting Is Important – Light is very important to house plants, and for this every plant is different. Check with your florist on how much light is required for your new companion. Most house plants prefer filtered light, such as through a thin curtain, instead of full-blown direct sunlight.
  • Plants Need To Eat Too – Fertilizing is also important for your plant’s health. Find out what fertilizer your plant likes best. Start with low doses to make sure the plant doesn’t have a bad reaction to the plant food. Remember to follow all fertilizing instructions very carefully.

Got pets? Check out: Top 5 House Plants For Fido

It’s Mum Time!

Yellow Potted Mum - Just in Time For Fall!

It’s Mum time!

With fall just over the horizon, it’s time for beautiful mum house plants to adorn our homes, porches and patios. Let the spirit of fall greet your house guests at the front door! Choose from an array of festive fall colored blooms that will last the whole season long! For the best selection, stop by your local flower shop!

What Plants Repel Mice and Rats?

Ask the Expert: What plants repel mice and rats? -Joy

Flower Shop Network’s Plant Expert Reply: There are many plants that have pest repelling properties. You might try planting these in or around your home to keep the mice away: any type of mint, amaryllis, sweet pea, lavender, daffodils, wood hyacinth (or squill), grape hyacinth, alliums, catnip, camphor plant, elderberry, euphorbias, and wormwood.* Oak and bay leaves are also known to repel rodents. Planting any of these outside your home is a good way to deter mice and rats from coming into your house. You may also make sachets out of the leaves of some of these plants to use in drawers and closets, especially mint, bay and lavender.

Flower Shop Network has not tested these, but they are known to work.

You might also like: Plants for Pest Repellent That Actually Work!

Where Can I Find Devil’s Trumpet Tree?

Ask the Expert: I can’t find where to order a Devil tree trumpet. It is a ruffled , purple & white plant Norma.

 Angel's Trumpet Ballerina Purple Datura metel

Flower Shop Network

Plant Expert Reply:

Your description sounds similar to the plant in the picture, but I’m not familiar with a plant called Devil’s Trumpet Tree.

However, the plant in the picture is call Angel’s trumpet. One man’s angel trumpet maybe another man’s devil’s trumpet. To me devil’s trumpet fits this plant better since it can be poisonous.  The botanical name for this plant is Datura metel.

It loves full sun and blooms late summer. It is perennial in zone 9 -12. Above zone 9 it must be planted as an annual. It can be started from seed or by vegetative reproduction.  It is rather easy to grow.  You need a moist soil that can keep the roots from becoming soggy. The seeds need to be plant in the spring.  You can order seeds online or find potted Datura at your local garden centers.

This plant identification is brought to you by local Las Crues florists.
Not in Las Crues NM? Use Flower Shop Network’s handy directory of local florists to find a florist near you!