indoor trees?

thedarkness(5)February 17, 2013

hi there,
i want a tree for my basement room that gets a little bit of sunlight during the morning, i was wondering what trees if any would grow nicely. i have a few apple seeds sprouting and growing, but i dont know how well they would work inside.
thanks

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Dzitmoidonc(6)

Temperate climate trees that need a cold rest period hardly ever work out for houseplants. Check out tropicals for inside. You also need to realize that a few hours of sun inside the house is at best like complete shade outside.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 2:11AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

perhaps WHY??.. is a better question...

and if you gave us more information as to your concept .. we might be able to give you some options..

but start by defining some terms... to be quite precise in use of the language ... TREES are NOT houseplants ... within MY definition ...

so the short answer is NONE.. no tree grows indoors.. for very long ...

so i would suggest you ask the same .. in the houseplant forum ... because.. and wait for it.. HOUSEplants do grow inside the house .. by definition .. lol ...

and you will have it much easier.. and succeed longer.. with a plant that LOOKS like a tree ... but is a houseplant ...

make any sense ...

ken

ps: and i dont think we need an argument as to whether some house plants are trees ... i am attempting to provide WORDS for searching.. if you see what i mean ...

pps: norfolk island pines MIGHT work.. with supplemental light ... not much is going to THRIVE ... on a couple hours of diffuse sunlight thru some basement windows at dawn or dusk ... it usually just not enough usable light for large plants.. but who knows ...

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 9:29AM
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thedarkness(5)

i realize trees are supposed to be outside, and are not suited for inddors. Thats exactly why i want to try to make one grow inddors. Would a maple possibly work better? i could set it by window where theres indirect light.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 2:27PM
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WxDano(5b-2a-6/7)

Would a maple possibly work better?

No. Nor apples, or avocados, or or or.

I suggest checking out a book on houseplants from the library before you get started. There are some understory tropicals that may work if the basement doesn't get too cold,

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 3:05PM
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thedarkness(5)

its actually quite warm because of where heater is at. is there any way to have a tree grow very slowly for lets say 5 years them move outside? if i place in backyard for a few hours a day im full sun would that work?

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 3:32PM
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thedarkness(5)

its actually quite warm because of where heater is at. is there any way to have a tree grow very slowly for lets say 5 years them move outside? if i place in backyard for a few hours a day im full sun would that work?

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 3:36PM
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greenthumbzdude

Any temperate tree will not work...they need that cycle of cold and warm seasons...thats just the way it is. A Ficus tree should work...they can handle quite a bit of shade.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 5:01PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

i dont understand.. why you think you are going to ogle answers from tree peeps.. on some mad scientist experiment..

JUST DO IT ... crimminey.. you will be the new EXPERT ...

or.. you can come back.. and tell all us tree peeps.. we were right ...

your ONLY option.. is to study up on bonsai ... they can grow indoors.. somewhat ... and you can learn all about light/heat/media/etc ... a tree is a tree ...

good luck

have fun

report back ...

ken

BTW.. most maples grow 3 to 5 feet per year.. are you going to chop a hole up thru the ceiling.. if you can get it to live that long ..???? .. it might get more light thru the windows on the higher level.. at least solving one problem ....

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 5:36PM
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thedarkness(5)

ive looked at some bonsai forums, and pretty much it says make sure no nutrients in soil and prune it down to size-with the maple i was hoping to have it for maybe a year, but i know apples are slower and are easier to cut down

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 5:40PM
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thedarkness(5)

ken, do you have any knowledge of apple trees? i have a question in the orchard forum and noone has answered, could you try indetifying the weird growths?

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 6:54PM
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drrich2(6)

I don't think the amount of sunlight will be sufficient for a tree.

Now, if you had a sun room, there are dwarf trees that stay small enough to serve such a purpose for years. But a basement room with a little bit of sunlight in the morning is not going to cut it.

Richard.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 8:58PM
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eahamel(9a)

Basement isn't a good place for any plants unless you have a lot of supplemental lighting. Trees need a lot of sun. They need to be outdoors. Even the bonsai trees need sunlight.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 1:44PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

You can chop on an apple or maple tree all you want to but you cannot make it be happy inside. Many temperate zone woody plants can be trained as bonsai, but they will always be temperate zone trees! They need to be kept outside.

Go to the Houseplant Forum for ideas.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 2:01PM
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farmboy1(5)

I once put a seed from an orange in a cup to see if it would germinate. It did, and I eventually repotted it. Summers I would put it out on the patio, winters it came indoors.

6 years later, it was 8 feet tall. Some very knowledgeable plant people wondered what kind of Ficus it was that had thorns...

Last year, I gave it away to a guy, who, believe it or not, took it to his winter house in Florida and planted it in his yard. Last I heard it was doing very well.

I need to check with him this summer to see if it's fruiting.....LOL

vince

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 11:01PM
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poaky1

Japanese maples are good for Bonsai ( I've read )but need overwintered outdoors for dormancy,so will not be a house tree, unless you find a warmer weather one, I don't know if that exists though.. Those palms from Lowes and Walmart are okay indoors, I have one. There's Schefflera Actinophylla called Umbrella tree, no direct sun, but bright indirect light. I got mine from Lowes, they grow abut a foot a year, well. mine has. I have a Norfolk Island pine too, but as Ken said they aren't very impressive, at least not for years. Try the tropical forum maybe. Apple trees can be kept small, so you could probably grow outdoors if you have a small area, but they need pesticides etc for unblemished fruit.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 11:59PM
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WxDano(5b-2a-6/7)

IMHO the reason why Ficus b.are so popular as houseplants even tho finicky is because they are tree-like. Very few plants that can tolerate indoors are like that.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 9:52AM
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poaky1

An Arbys restaurant in a nearby town had a ficus tree that was quite impressive in the middle of the restaurant. They had a skylight above it. It would shed leaves before putting a new batch on. I wish we didn't have an attic, making it hard to put in skylights. I would have plants everywhere. I gotta buy some lottery tickets.........

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 10:10PM
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thedarkness(5)

out of topic, but for some reason this thread gets more attention to my others, so maybe someone would see this- will a light used for UV rays for a lizard, help seeds sprout if placed within 2 feet of it, with a sunny window from 645-12ish
and a second thing,
if i were to make a wooden frame, and drape clear plastic then tape to bottom, would it work for a small outside greenhouse when sunny?

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 11:19PM
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WxDano(5b-2a-6/7)

will a light used for UV rays for a lizard, help seeds sprout if placed within 2 feet of it,

IIRC once sprouted seeds need light in the green-yellow portion of the spectrum, what they already get in the window (provided no low-e film on it) as well as what they get in any cool white fluor bulb. As for the GH, you need to vent it. anything inside will cook on a sunny day. Plenty of info in the GH forum for designs.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 11:31PM
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thedarkness(5)

thanks dano, how much vent should i have? i currently have seeds in small containers of dirt with bottles on them to act like small green houses- should i take caps off or is a few hole in top all thats neccasary? we keep it around 72 in house and light gives off no heat, so sun might add some, and just being enclosed

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 11:36PM
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subtropix

The best tropical plant that can be maintained indoors fits your idea of what a tree should look like, is the ficus. Probably best are Ficus benjamina or, one that I prefer even more, F. macrophylla (Moreton Bay Fig). I like the second species more because it is MUCH less inclined to drop its leaves. The Moreton Bay they usually sell as bonsai for some reason. If you plant it in a regular container container, it will soon get big--but mine summers outside. In a basement, you can grow a lot but you need artificial light--not hard to set up.--But I would stick to tropical trees--which most Ficus are.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 6:15PM
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WxDano(5b-2a-6/7)

how much vent should i have?

My rule in this place is 1/6 of the roof area if sunny days get above 55F. Inside with grow lights you only need a little hole, once they are above the soil level at those indoor temps you don't need covers unless you can't water regularly.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 6:43PM
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poaky1

Be aware of the windiest side of your house/yard if you choose to put it outdoors. That can be the difference of nice greenhouse vs. you cussing and chasing clear plastic film all over the yard and dumped plants pots etc. I had bought an El Cheapo greenhouse and learned that lesson. So wind protection is a must with cheapo greenhouse set-ups.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 5:40PM
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