New plants.Think good deal at H.D.

caro123_gw(3NH)February 7, 2014

Went to Home Depot for plant food and these two crawled into the cart! Have always wanted a Dragon Tree
( Dracenea marginata ) and this 3 ft. one was on sale for
$4.98. Looks in good shape- the pic makes it look like some leaves are yellow but it is just the light. Gave it a good bath in the tub with baby shampoo with some alcohol in it just in case. That was fun!!
Then as I was going to check out there was a stand with a sign saying Red Aglaonema and this one jumped in. There was also another type that had narrower leaves that I really liked also but had to choose. Might go back and get the other type also. Love how it gives color to a group of green plants. This is a Costa farm one. Funny thing is that Walmart is on the back of the tag. This one
was 12.98 marked down from 14.98.
Lady at counter said to keep slip because can get new plants if they die within a year if you bring dead plant and the slip in.
Any personal tips on these plants appreciated.

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jujujojo_gw(6b 7a)

How lovely! I heard the red one absorbs toxins indoors.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2014 at 6:32PM
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Caro, beautiful!

Red Aglaonemas, my favorite.
Over the years, my reds lost 90% color, it may or may not be a sun issue.
My Ag's are before north-west windows, plus artificial light. In summer the same west windows scorch lower-light plants..Although it's been sunny, the sun isn't strong enough to burn greens, yet.

An unobstructed east should be sufficient in summer..since you're z3, bright south is hopefully adequate...???
Humidity...they dislike wet feet, tend to rot.
Does the outer container have drainage? If not, discard, unless you can drill home-made holes.

Roots are bulbous so if a section dies back, there's a good chance for new growth.

D. marginata. Dragon Tree. Although Dracaenas are tropical, I grow marginata as a semi-succulent, especially in winter.

Full sun, not direct summer south or west exposure.
Well-draining mix. I allow soil to dry between watering..
My Dracaenas are fertilized with All-Purpose or balanced fertilizer. Sometimes, organic Fish Emulsion.

Shower if possible. I spray plants, although misting is a debatable issue.

You lucked out..Toni

    Bookmark   February 7, 2014 at 8:52PM
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I looooove your Aglaonema!

I don't think caring for a red Alg is different than that of a more green Alg. From my own experiences of owning a "Silver Queen' Alg, they prefer to dry out a bit between waterings (don't let them go bone dry, but don't keep them consistently moist either). Mine didn't have much of a root system to speak of when I purchased it, but by watering it in that manner, the root system exploded. They are "lower light" plants, but you'll have to offer pretty bright light if you want to keep that variegation (as Toni noted most of hers have lost theirs). I'd imagine an East location would be good. East windows generally receive morning sunlight with no afternoon sun, while West windows, it's the opposite. Afternoon sun will be too strong for your Alg and it will burn (as Toni also noted).

I've never owned a Drac for very long, so I'd follow Toni's instructions on that one, hehe.


    Bookmark   February 7, 2014 at 9:25PM
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Planto, JuJu, and Toni,
Thanx for replies.Unfortunately the brightest room with the most windows and East light is also the coldest during winter.Right now have both in a West window. Can move them when it gets warmer. Right now don't think sun in the West is all that much but probably could be in summer. Could move them to a south window also because there are eaves above it- also have lace curtains on that window.
Would you put these guys out for summer in shaded area? Thanx for tips on watering.
The Ag. is in an inner pot with drainage holes.
Toni- take a look at the "Phil post". Put pic of that weird
cactus there-maybe you know what it is. The rose is a regular Knockout Pink not a mini.All I have left of my mini
are three short sticks but keep telling myself that the wood looks ok. I brought the K.O in cause they are hardy
to Zone 5 and figured it would die outside. Loved it as a container plant last summer and hope it will repeat.
I'm suppose to be Zone 4 but when temps can drop to -24 and one year went to -30 I question that.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2014 at 11:31PM
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I don't think a west window would be too intense in the winter (sorry I didn't mention that in my previous post). In the summer, that's a different story. You should be able to move it back to your cold East window when it warms up.

I don't know if a South window would be too intense considering you said you have curtains. That wouldn't really qualify as an "unobstructed" South window, so the light coming in wouldn't be as intense as if you didn't have the curtains. I'll let Toni answer that one. I'd hate to tell you yes and it burns. I just know how to "mess around" with the blinds in our South window to keep too much light from coming in, no curtains to block anything out.

I have my Pothos, African Violet, and Spider Plant right near a South window right now and I haven't experienced any issues with scorching. All we have is a South window (apartment)... which is great in winter, but a bit scary in summer lol.

As to placing it outside in a shaded area, I wouldn't see any issue with that, but I like to keep my houseplants indoors (just personal preference).

I know Al (tapla) says there is no such thing as a "houseplant" and I think he said (someone said it) that all "houseplants" really want to be outdoors. Our patio, facing South like it does, is too unpredictable for me to want to place anything outside. One day it's shady, next day, the entire patio is lit up and it's like Hades (yes, I've burned my feet a few times not wearing my flip flops lol). Again, maybe Toni would be best to answer that.


    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 12:00AM
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Wow, your cat is sitting just next to the new plant not touching it!! Sorry this is a bit off topic, but⦠I really want a cat, but I dread how can a cat live in a house with about 50 plants. And I'm not sure they are all safe.
How did you teach your cat not to touch the plants?
BTW, I love the red one!!! I have a dracaena too (it was $1 at Lowe's). :)

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 2:35AM
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Most tropicals are poisonous to some extent, including some very popular ones. Frankly, having always had cats and/or dogs, it has never been a problem. There are some that they definitely will take bits from (spider plants, cut flowers, the lucky (false) bamboo, finer palm fronds, ferns...). But mostly, they ignore them. The cat in the pic above is looking for some space to lounge somewhere on that sunny table top. Leave it some space. That also benefits the plants to some extent by improving ventilation and reducing the opportunity of potential plant pests to spread across your collection. The other thing you can do is growing something for the cat (catnip or alfalfa grass). They usually sell it at better pets stores. Of course there are some super toxic plants (Oleander, Castor Bean for example). These, I just don't bring into the house. Overall, there can be a peaceful co-existence.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 9:05AM
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i just got a pink aglaonema too ;). been reading up, as usual. seems they need much more light then green varieties to maintain color : but only very early or very late sun that is weak - sev hours.
and they are very temp sensitive: like to be very warm.
so 70-75F is what they need.
also never allow them to totally dry up. and they absolutely need high humidity. kinda like ming aralia all in all, i'd say.
in general reg aglaonema are considered easy plants, pink on the other hand - are downright difficult.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 12:20PM
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Morning, Afternoon to some.

I agree pink/red Aglaoenemas need more light to keep colors.
After posting last night, I checked my Aglaos, and discovered some pink leaves..although they were once red. It seems now that daylight hours have lengthened variegation is more prominent..

I also agree Aglao's dislike wet feet. Humidity is important, but soil needs to dry between waterings, no matter which, pink or green.

I have a large stand in the front plant room..Because one side is furthest from south and west windows, lower light plants do well..Last summer, I placed three Aglaos on the shelf..they did burnt foliage.
The only problem is the room gets very hot in summer, cold during winter. We rarely turn on a/c.
We mainly use fans and open windows..'fresh air.'

I wish the room/s reached 70-75F during winter, but neither plant room stays warm..especially at night. One winter, the back plant room temp was 20-something degrees. The only plant that passed was a baby Pachypodium, which was my fault..I knew I should have held off watering, but soil was extra dry. The next day Pachy was bent.

Okay, I'm getting off topic here, sorry. :)

I agree, most plants are toxic to some degree. I tossed an Oleander tree because of my birds.
Thankfully, many sites list poisonous plants. Bird Talk, Cat Fancy contain lists. Turns out 90% of my plants are harmful to pets to some degree.

But, it depends on the individual pet. A friends bird ate the foliage of Hedera/English Ivy. According to Bird Talk and other feathered friend magazines/sites, Ivy will kill a bird.
Silver, 'friends bird name,' chewed every leaf on her Ivy, without getting sick or worse.

However, I don't advise allowing a pet to nibble any plant.

Pet, imo, red and pink Aglaos are difficult. Heck, even green can be fussy..low humidity, they sure don't look like they did when shipped from Fl. lol.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 1:01PM
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teengardener1888(NY Albany 5a)

Lovely new plants! I especially love your Chinese evergreen.......Its so colorful!!! I also love your Dracaena marginata, what a good deal...In personal preference I think the plain dark green var. Is prettier than D. marginata(Tricolor):-) Variegation doesn't always look good for every plant

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 1:14PM
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NJ- yep that is Rusty's favorite sunning spot. He will get some of it back today since I'm moving the wax begonias elsewhere.He's 13 years old now and pretty mellow. He will eat grass occ. outside but the only plant I've ever seen him try to nibble is the spider when he jumps on the kitchen sill where it is hung. Spiders aren't on the poison list. He was about a year old when I found him hanging around my yard in the snow so has been an outie/innie cat. He prefers to be in and just wants to go out if I'm out now. I usually grow a pot of oat grass just for them.
Velvet the 7 month old has only been in and doesn't nibble
anything but is great at batting leaves. The Drac. got a few welcoming swats.She is just growing out of the crazy kitten stage so main problem is where is she going to jump next and what she is going try to climb. She tried to climb the Christmas tree and I wrapped her in a present because she got in the box when my back was turned- imagine the surprise
when her head popped out of the wrapping.It was my last roll too.
Veimar - I think plants with dangling appendages are probably the most attractive to cats. The spider plant is a sitting duck. Hang it high. I usually clap my hands and yell "Hey" then No.Sometimes it works sometimes not. Then I physically remove them and give them something else to do.
Plants on tables and sills are in more danger of being knocked off if you have a lot together when they are just learning to jump. Rusty is very adept at winding his way around things without disturbing them. The other one is getting better at it. I was washing stemware for the holidays and Rusty jumped up on the table- just waited with held breath while he picked his way through. Look up Cat Forums on google and you will find a lot of cat info.
Pet and Toni-
Temp outside here is 20. My back East windows room is 56-
last night it was 48. Rest of house is 62-64. So guess for now they are in the west window. What do you two think of outside in the summer for these? Kind of glad the coloring is dependant on light rather then reverting as the AG grows

Aha- didn't realize there were two types Off to look up tricolor. Bet that one would need more light then the green?

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 3:23PM
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Hehe, sounds like you have a silly young cat. I can answer Teen's question (hope he doesn't mind) regarding the Drac. The 'tricolor' he mentioned, I've owned one of those before. I don't know much about Dracs as I've only owned a couple for well... a couple months lol. I didn't have the 'tricolor' in the brightest of locations, but it never lost it's coloring. Here's a picture of one I found on D's Garden from palmbob:


This post was edited by plantomaniac08 on Sat, Feb 8, 14 at 16:03

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 4:02PM
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I may love my plants, but the Queen is still the boss around here!

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 4:35PM
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She is a silly kitty- kind of like having a 2 or 3 year old kid running around.
Thanx for the pic- I thought mine was all green because of the lighting in the store. Oh well- I like the green anyhow . Was planning (for decorative effect) to put it in front of the white wall to the right of where it is and thought it would make a good contrast. Guess I can still do that on and off. Did your South window do yours in? I always wanted a large South window so I could grow more flowering types.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 5:16PM
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Rarely do I look at very many online plant collections, videos, etc before a cat creeps into the scene, so I was elated to see the beautiful yellow tabby in Caro's pictures and then the Queen calico later.

Veimar, you asked about plants and cats. It's good to read that you want a cat. We have about forty houseplants and two cats. From my experience, and others may have very different experiences to share, if a cat goes outside, it will meet most of its plant needs out there, finding suitable plants to ingest, and will likely not be that interested in your plants, especially if the cat has grown out of its kitten stage and doesn't need to play with EVERYTHING that moves ever-so-slightly. We have one cat that is under a year old and does not go outside without us present. She has gotten into a couple plants, knocking one completely over, digging into the pot of another. Fortunately, the damage was very minimal--but frustrating. I put smooth rocks on the tops of my larger pots so the idea of using them as litter pans didn't enter our cat's mind, and she never has.

I don't know that you can actually train a cat to not bother plants as they are going to do what they want to when you are not at home, so keep your most toxic plants in places the cats can't get to, and know that there may be some misfortunes along the way, but as revealed in the picture above, the Queen cat will likely rule, and you simply have to employ strategies that keep damages to a minimum.

When we got our second cat, a beautiful calico kitten, we consulted the vet about poisonous plants, and he said he had rarely treated a cat for houseplant poisoning. I'm sure it happens, but I've had cats and plants all my adult life, and I"ve been careful and never had major problems. Toxic plants can be hung from places your cat can't reach too.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 5:29PM
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Caro, what's the Phil thread? lol

Do your windows leak air? 48F won't kill most plants, but if it's cold air seeping in, there's a difference.
My poor Coffee Tree leaves froze..the darn house is settling, so the window wasn't closed shut..I found a gap about 1/4". I hope it's not dead.

Silly kitty-cats and puppies. They do the darnest things.

Both cats are adorable. I miss having a cat around, but not with the bird. We had a cat 'and birds,' up to, I think 4-years ago. He passed around his 17th year.
When I think about plant messes.

Coco and a kitty running around the house chasing my terrified bird. lol..

Howdy Teen....

It's cold here and still snowing! By Monday, they're talking single-digits again..sigh.
I pray we have a hotter winter than last.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 6:24PM
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And that's why some of us animal lovers consider our pets our children... some of them do act like children lol. ;) People ask sometimes why we don't want children. Well, technically we do have a child... so she's furry and four-legged!

I actually don't remember what happened to my 'tricolor' now that you ask, haha! Maybe it was one of my many "first" houseplants that bit the dust. I got into houseplants when I still lived with my folks some years ago. I had it indoors on the East side of the house, but the way their patio "overhang" (for a lack of a better word) is situated, none of the plants I had in that location got sufficient light. I was just starting to get into houseplants then and didn't have a clue what I was doing lol. I did everything you weren't supposed to do to houseplants. Kind of scary to think of it, but nice to know I've learned so much since then.

Having a South window is nice, it just limits what I can put in/near it for fear of that hot August sun. I guess beggers can't be choosers. At least it's not a North window, I'd have a hard time growing things as successfully I think.


    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 6:46PM
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Some people think it's cruel, but I'd sprinkle cayenne pepper around the edge of pots. Believe me, I LOVE my pets..Birds, dogs, cats and even our son's iguana..I'd never do anything to hurt a pet or outside animal..well, except for mice...

Cats detect the pepper scent several feet or more, when approaching..they sniff, 'little noses twitch,' then make a u-turn.

Here's a photo of my D. marginata..I got the main plant for 1.00 at the grocery store..4" pot. Along the years, I added a variegated baby, also 1.00, same store.

I used to set it outside, but stopped when ants marched in the soil. Not that it matters, now the little creepy-crawlers get in other plants.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 7:09PM
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Hopeful, keep in mind, parrots are almost exceptional among animals (humans also), in actually having a taste for occasional extra-hot spice (like cayenne pepper)!

Does them no harm, not sure about us. ;)

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 7:20PM
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That cat definately looks bossy. Heres one of Velvet the 7 month old troublemaker . If the tree looks oddly decorated it is because it was done by 5 year old GD with Velvet helping by making sure everything was firmly attached. Obviously Grammy
had to redecorate.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 7:39PM
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Nj, pepper to keep the cat away from

Large parrot food contains dries, hot peppers...they love it. Cats, on the other hand do not.

I dislike hot peppers and spicy foods.

Just my opinion, but I feel hot peppers are not the healthiest for people..

People who suffer with stomach/digestion ailments are told to steer clear of spicy foods..If they eat spicy anyway, they complain about tummy aches, heart burn.

I don't eat lettuce anymore, but years ago, I'd make home-made salad dressing..vinegar, olive oil, etc.
I feel the same about vinegar nowadays..

Anything that kills bugs, 'hot pepper, vinegar,' can't be too healthy for humans.

When I think about chemicals.....just my opinion though.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 7:42PM
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Oh my, she's too cute!


    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 7:44PM
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Toni- the groundhog one.You had asked what kind of cactus
"Jaws"was so I posted a pic there.
I hope the pic of Velvet at work on the Christmas tree above
doesn't dissuade Veimer from getting a cat. We should do a post on all our Jungle animals with the plants except they never do anything when you want them too. Might start one later- dogs,
cats,mice, guinea pigs,snakes,fish etc.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 8:04PM
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Thank you for you lovely messages and pictures! So do you think I can have a cat? :) Right now I have two baby rats and a parrot. They are mostly in the cage and if they are out I watch them. :) I LOVE cats, but I also love my plants, so just made a compromise getting caged pets (who are adorable - I'm laughing so hard right now looking at my ratties fooling around me). I don't think I have super toxic plants, but I never checked. Maybe next year I'll think about getting a kitty!

    Bookmark   February 9, 2014 at 1:07AM
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Calvin Ragoonanan

Love the Thai Aglaoenama!

Here is a link that might be useful: Trini Garden

    Bookmark   February 9, 2014 at 12:32PM
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Caro, Velvet is a cutie..He wants to play with your ornaments. lol

BTW, I love your decorations..They remind me of ornaments my father trimmed the tree. Especially the tree ornament.

Veimer, what type of parrot do you have? The cat doesn't bother him? Or does he bother the cat? lol.

Remember, cats like to 'play' with rats and birds. Size matters. A larger bird is less threatened, but from Conure size to finch...look out!


    Bookmark   February 9, 2014 at 1:00PM
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I have a guinea pig as well as the cats so have to make sure no cats are in the room and the door is closed when he is let out. The cats will occ. sit by his cage and they have touched noses but definately would not trust together. Never thought I'd be buying salads and fruit for a He belongs to the grandkids but lives here
Have a friend that has a large parrot and her dog and cat hide when it is out.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2014 at 3:25PM
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Enjoyed your blog- beautiful plants. Are you a native of Trinidad or a transplant? I'd like to transplant myself there right now to get away from cold and snow.
I'm looking up more types of the Thai AG - love that some of the old standby plants are turning into gorgeous creations.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2014 at 6:05PM
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Enjoyed your blog- beautiful plants. Are you a native of Trinidad or a transplant? I'd like to transplant myself there right now to get away from cold and snow.
I'm looking up more types of the Thai AG - love that some of the old standby plants are turning into gorgeous creations.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2014 at 6:10PM
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nancy_pnwzone8(OR zone 8)


nice score on the aglaonema. it wasn't very many years ago when you had to pay oodles of money and hope that your shipment from thailand would survive the shipping and customs process if you wanted to acquire one of these plants. now they're available at big box stores. amazing.

if you care, i think that your plant is called "unyamanee" or "dud unyamanee". i've seen this name with various similar spellings as well.

i keep mine (portland, or) in an east window year round. in the summer, i pull a white shear curtain over the window when the sun is out. mine has mostly retained the original color.

i love this plant. in addition to being so pretty, it has a nice habit of sending out suckers when it is happy, so the plant looks nice and full.

i hope that you enjoy this one as much as i do.



    Bookmark   February 9, 2014 at 8:44PM
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Thanx for the info. The "dud unyamanee" led right to sites that
had plants that look just like it. Glad to hear that it suckers also.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2014 at 10:22PM
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I wonder if there's a different between unyamanee and anyamanee???

    Bookmark   February 10, 2014 at 10:32AM
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soo i was looking for pics of "dud unyamanee" and on one of photos it said means âÂÂjewelryâ ..bad translation? may be 'jewel'?
Binomial name: Aglaonema Anjamani. so i searched that and found a very nice pictorial book of all the pink varieties with names. can't figure out the what is the language..:)
anjamani is on p.70
search for 'Serial Galeri Eksotika : Aglaonema' by abdul kadir on
you can see most of the pages.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2014 at 3:54PM
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Toni- Think Anyamanee means Precious Jewel in Thai.
Anyone from Thailand here?
Petrushka-going to look your link up tomorrow- Like knowing the origins of plants and who made changes to give the varieties we have.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2014 at 2:29AM
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Thanks Caro.

My ex-Agalonema anyamanee was a Precious Jewel.

Wish I could find another..the Nursery owner in Thailand no longer sells Aglaos, and this particular species is impossible finding in US.
Aglaos that come close to the anyamanee are 30-plus dollars...

Yes, I'd love another.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2014 at 11:10AM
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hey, i got mine for 8$ at fairchild farmers market in miami,fl.
they had just a few ags, and only 1 like that. prolly just trying out how it sells.
and it's pretty big too: 6" pot with 3 crowns going, 2 offsets and standing 12". all 3 are producing flowers too.
i'm keeping mine at 70F min to continue growth, it's pushing out leaves AND another flower :).
i think in south fl it's much easier to find them cheap then anywhere else.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2014 at 11:31AM
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Hey Pet, what a gorgeous Ag. Wow, 8.00!

Was the plant shipped or were you in FL?

Yep, nurseries and BBS in warmer climate states, even semi-warm areas sell rarer plants at reasonable prices.

Similar to hardy plants in cold/er states prices. Example, mums are sold here as low as 1.50. An Aglao such as yours, if available, would be priced 20 and higher.

I like. Toni

    Bookmark   February 11, 2014 at 12:43PM
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i was in fl and bought it there and then flew it home in a suitcase. made a custom box for it, packed it with paper shreds and nested it in warm clothes :). i read that they are super sensitive to cold temps even for the shortest time.
so shipping in winter was out of the question from 80F to 25F in nyc. even checked-in suitcase in cargo bay sounded risky to me, but that was the only option. but it made it ok.
it has a very cute 'flower' - quite typically aroid. the other 2 older ones i already cut off. the baby offset is also producing a bud.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2014 at 4:39PM
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Calvin Ragoonanan


Sorry for the late reply. I'm a native of Trinidad.

I love Thai aglaonemas. I only have four cultivars so far.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2014 at 8:23PM
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love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

Hi Petrushka, the plants are beautiful. I just love them. Did you have any trouble at Customs with the plant inside the box inside the suitcase? Did you need any special paperwork to get your plant through Customs? I will be traveling this summer and I am sure there will be some plants I would like to bring home if I can. :)

    Bookmark   February 15, 2014 at 10:12PM
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Petrusha..the old plant in the suitcase trick. lol.
Hope it wasn't a long flight.

Yes, Aglaos prefer warm and humid, but my poor babies are placed in one of two rooms, both cold.
They're on the main floor..

Upstairs rooms face west and south..light is too strong.
In summer, the room they're in now gets very hot. Can't win.
Anyway, I'm glad your Aglao made the trip without harm.
It's got beautiful colors...I see the bud peeking out..

Love in the Yard..hint..bring an extra suitcase or two. lol.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2014 at 11:06AM
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it was a domestic US flight - so no customs! I had a packed box with plants in checked suitcase and another in carry-on. nobody even asked anything.
as far as i know hawaii needs plant cert to get in/out, cali to get plants in and fl has citrus restrictions. but others - no problems.
trini, can you advice us on light for thai ags? the best i could find was very bright indirect sun, with very early/very late weak sun 1-2 hours beneficial for color.
i already managed to burn one leaf in FL in not so weak sunset light. any idea in foot candles/lux? i cannot find any ref to that anywhere at all.
i think they are close to ming aralia in growing conditions.
don't thai ags start spotting on leaves in cool temps?
do yours have spots/yellow leaf margins?
mine were for 2 weeks at may be 62F AT THE ROOTS and one young leaf started showing gray spots, now turning yellowish. i immediately put it on a heating pad and raised temps in the room to 70F (near windows is cooler by 5F). i also have tropical ferns/aralias/anthuriums/african masks that can't stand getting cold feet - they were all tented when i was away and temps were at 65F. that's how i keep them going well. should've tented ag too right away!

    Bookmark   February 16, 2014 at 12:48PM
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