1 African violet
African violets are a bit fussy, but some simple tips make their care easier. They don't like getting their leaves wet, so water them from underneath by filling the saucer with linch of water and setting the pot on top for up to 30 minutes or until the soil is moist. Another trick: Keep your African violets in bright but indirect light. An east-facing window is perfect.
Why we love it: The purple of the flowers adds a color pop to any room.
2 Sweetheart hoya
The charming heart-shaped leaves are where sweetheart hoya gets its adorable name. Typically grown in a hanging basket, sweetheart hoya can be trained to climb a trellis, too. It does well in direct or indirect light and can go two or three weeks between waterings.
Why we love it: An individual leaf cutting from sweetheart hoya can be planted upright in a small pot and will grow for a few years, making it a good Valentine's Day gift.
3 Cast iron plant
As its name implies, the cast iron plant is tough. It tolerates a wider range of humidity, light conditions, temperatures and watering frequency than most houseplants. Wipe the big leaves free of dust with a damp cloth.
Why we love it: Cultivars such as Milky Way and Variegata feature white speckles or stripes, adding fun details to an already striking plant.
Before bringing a new plant home, see if it's toxic to any furry friends in the house. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals website, aspca.org, offers comprehensive info. Just search for the name of the plant.
4 Watermelon peperomia
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Eye-catching houseplants that won't harm curious dogs or cats.
Easy as One, Two, Tree!
Seven things to do before adding a new sapling to your property.
A true blue TRIO
Find out which of the three North American bluebirds call your area home, and learn how to win them over with the right food and habitat.
Hints of Spring
Readers photograph birds in thawing backyards and parks.
Create a Safe a Bird Haven
Dish out seeds in a healthy environment.
Fuzzy, gentle and efficient, mason bees are champion pollinators. Here's why you want to attract them to your garden.
Greet spring with pretty plants that shine all season.
Ask the Experts
Pros weigh in on spring gardening and birding questions.
ALONG THE WATER'S EDGE
Known for their fondness for life in wet habitats, wading birds can be found near lakes, swamps and more. Dive into these amazing reader photos.
Eyes on Irises
There's more to this floral family than can be seen in the backyard.
Meet the winners of our first America’s Best Pet Pals contest. Warm fuzzies guaranteed!
TIPS TO HELP Pets WITH Separation Anxiety
After more than a year of quarantining and bonding with their pet parents during the pandemic, many pets are now experiencing separation anxiety as Americans spend less time at home. Whether pet parents are planning to return to the office or go on a summer vacation, Crista Coppola, Ph.D., PetSmart’s consulting Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist (CAAB), says that identifying and managing separation anxiety in pets can go a long way to easing the transition back to regular activities for pets and pet parents alike.
Camping With Your Dog
Bringing your dog on your next outdoor overnight excursion? Oh, yes! With a little planning, your canine companion will enjoy camping just as much as you. These Northern Michigan spots are perfectly pet-friendly.
Notes for new breeders
Experienced breeders will tell you that there are a number of things they wish someone had told them before they had their first litter. This article will share a few of those items with you in the hope that it will encourage you to read more and ask more questions.
My Special Cat
Most of us have had that special cat—a heart cat with whom we had a deep connection. It may have been the cat we had as a child, or the one that saw us through a troubled time, or one with whom we bonded as we exhibited at cat shows. Whether the cat found us or we sought it out, those connections cannot be denied. These are the stories of some of those special cats and what they mean or meant to us.
WHO'S a good business model? It's YOU! Yes it is! You're SUCH a good business model! Yes you are!
Locked-down Americans are pampering their pets like never before, and Chewy is reaping the benefits
Click - Getting Great Shots of your Cat with a Smartphone
So you want to enter one of the many virtual competitions popping up around the internet but don’t have professional photos or video of your cat. Fear not! If you have a smartphone, you have a camera and can get what you need. Here are a few tips to help.
Choosing the Right Cat Tree
Whether you have your first cat or your tenth, keeping your cat healthy and your furniture undamaged means you will need to get a scratching post (or cat “tree”). These come in many shapes and sizes and they’re built using a variety of materials. Different construction techniques are also used, some being better than others. This gives you lots to choose from. So, choosing the right tree for your cat can take some thought.
A Fish Named Dog
I locked eyes with the fish as I tapped flakes of food into his tank. He stared blankly at me through the glass. Not exactly my idea of a perfect pet.
Welcome to the world that is Life With Patrick
For those of you who do not know them, let me introduce you to the cast of characters: