Phoenix AZ house plants

lostsoul62(6)August 24, 2011

I live in Phoenix AZ and want to get some house plants but I don't know anything about them. I want to get plants that won't hurt my dog. Something that gets a little big and don't need the sun? It's between 75 to 80 degrees year around in the house.

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Lostsoul, first, I'd suggest either buying or borrowing plant books from your local library.

Find a book with colored pictures and care information.
One book I suggest is 'The House Plant Expert.'

Second, which directions do your windows face? Light is very important. Some people assume sun needs to blaze through window panes, ten-hours per day to get a fair amount of light---it doesn't, not necessarily.

75-80F degrees is pretty hot. If you have south or west facing windows, I was going to suggest Succulents or Cactus, but most prefer cooler nights. At least a 10 degree drop.

Please don't think I'm trying to dissuade you, but most plants are going to be difficult surviving in such high temperatures, especially if the air is dry.

Of course, you can always get a humidifer, which I recommend to those living in dry climates.

There are smaller plants that would enjoy the heat, like African Violets and Episcias, but again, they'd need humidity.

Also, they are on the small side. You said you want a plant that 'gets a little big.'
How tall/wide do you want?

Last, finding a plant that won't harm your dog.
Over the years, I've brought in plants in various families. At the time, I was only aware of a few plants that were poisonous.
We have 2 dogs, an iguana, and 4 birds.

Although I LOVE plants, my pets come first.
I was shocked reading material on Dog/Cat/Bird Fancy, listing plants I never thought toxic to pets. Even a common Dracaena, 'Corn Plant' when ingested, can make a pet sick. And it seems the list has grown longer.

The Poinsettia plant was once considered toxic, but they now claim it's safe. Still, the plant has sap, and if eaten, sap can make a doggy's tummy ache, and all the goodies associated with tummy problems.

There's a list of toxic plants on Dog Fancy's website, or Google, toxic plants, dogs.

Do you have any plants now, and if you do, does your dog ignore or find them fascinating? Toni

    Bookmark   August 24, 2011 at 11:34PM
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I don't know about other houseplants, but Sansevieria will grow very well in those conditions, and they're not toxic.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2011 at 12:07PM
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I suggest going to this website and looking at the link for Part 6, the list of "Safe" plants:
Clickable Link

That website has some of the best information on toxicity of plants that I've found. It is important to find out what people mean when they say a plant is toxic. There are some plants where if dog eats some of the plant they may get an upset stomach and throw up but it won't kill them. Some might call that toxic but others wouldn't because it isn't deadly. Others houseplants really are very poisonous and could kill a dog if it eats them, and I'm sure you want to avoid those.

Here are some plants that are easy to grow and should not pose a danger to dogs:
Chlorophytum (Spider Plant)
Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)
Jade Plant (Crassula ovata)

    Bookmark   August 25, 2011 at 12:49PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I can think of a zillion plants that would be perfectly happy in those temperatures! 75-80 can be comfortable for us human types, as long as it's not terribly humid. Many of our favorite houseplants descend from plants discovered in tropical regions of the world where the temperatures can remain pretty consistent. Aside from that, tried and true favorites have evolved to thrive in typical home conditions.

So, once you let us know what kind of natural light conditions you will have to offer these future plants, and what size you are looking at, perhaps we can offer some safe suggestions.

If you know for a fact that your dog is likely to see a houseplant as an object for its amusement, I'd rethink the houseplant idea. No use tempting the fates.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2011 at 4:30PM
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I don't have any suggestions for plants, but if you do see something that you like, check it out with the ASPCA toxic plants list before you buy it.

Here is a link that might be useful: ASPCA Toxic & Non-Toxic Plants

    Bookmark   August 31, 2011 at 5:07PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

I want to get plants that ... don't need the sun? Did you just mean inside instead of outside? Agree with those who said it's hard to say which plants without knowing what window (which direction it faces) the plant would be in or near.

A good way to have a plant out of the reach of dogs is to hang it.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 11:42AM
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