Newspaper Archive of
Mountain Messenger
Lewisburg, West Virginia
April 10, 1990     Mountain Messenger
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April 10, 1990

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8C The Mountain Messenger, Tuesday, April 10, 1990 merge the stem and the bottom third of When it comes .PROPAGATING YOUR the leaf in damp vermiculite and in three to fertilizing your' HOUSEPLANTS or four weeks new plantlets should up- houseplants, they * By JOEL RAPP pear. should be fed at1 are "Mr. Mother Earth" * Division: This method is best for bro- least every two t meliads and ferns. Cut through the roots weeks with Liquid Unlike other flora and fauna, the most Poison ivy grows as a bush or as a measures, allergic reactions :Hi there, philodendron phans! Props- with a very sharp knife, then repot the Houseplant Food.l - Iimportant fact gardeners and other out- climbing vine. Leaves appear red in the vented and controlled," gating your own plants is easy, finn, and sections into individual pots. But be sure to fol-~ door enthusiasts can learn about mere- early spring, shiny green in summer and Be aware, too, that very rewarding. There are three basic Happy growing! low the directions on the bottle, because bers of the beautiful Rhus family (poison red-orange in autumn Each leaf has thing around you is sus ways to propagate houseplants: too much food can be as harmful as not ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac) is three leaflets with ragged edges. Small fishing rods, hiking Stem Cuttings: Thi,; easy method enough, how to avoid them. greenish flowers grow in bunches at- and other sports equipment-" works with almost any plant. Simply cut The only thing your plants can't get Likewise, it pays to know the basics of tached to the main stalk, later becoming the clothing you wore a piece of stem from the p:ant right above I TOO MUCH TLC ] too much of is love treating the itching, burning, and redness ivory-colored berries, retain a layer of poison ivy a leaf node, plant in vermiculite or water which result from contacting--often * Poison oak is more of a low, branch- came in contact with th~ Ic until roots form, then plant in regular [ CAN KILL "]1 simply from touching--the poison ing shrub. Each leaflet is shaped some- not adequately cleaned. [ F-0-a- plants what ,ke an oak leaf Plant to,,ns, wh,ch o ,, potting mix. As with all [:'ants, when the I YOUR ['IOU~EPI.,fl~S ] According to Charles Zugerman,= Poison sumac ts a~long stalk with" six fingernails tbr a brief I e cuttings take hold, begin regular feeding [ , By JOEL RAPP =. ] I DARK PLACES M.D., associate professor of clinical der- or seven spade-shapc,I lca~es attached to tinue to spread on the skin with HouseplantF0od. [ Mr. Mother Earth" I matology, Northwestern University Med- either side. rash. [ By JOEL RAPP What's more Dr. Zu Hi there, philodendron phans! Even ] "Mr. Mother 'Earth" ical School, and consultant to Blistex "Reportedly, more cases of allergic 'The fact that you never Leaf Cuttings" C- ~-- though houseplants have to be tended, Inc., makers of Ivarest poison ivy medi- contact dermatitis alfect Americans each This is best for Afri too much care can often be as damaging ' Hi there, philodendron phans! The cation, treatment should be "ASAP" (as year from these poison plants than from rash before doesn't mean can violets and be- as not enough, question I'm most often asked is "What soon as possible): all other causes combined But, with mune this season. And, genius+ This method In fact. the number one cause of plants will grow in the dark?" Well, the "If you have come into contact with proper knowledge and precautionary implies allergy to all three." poison ivy, oak or sumac, wash exposed is similar to stem houseplant death is overwatering. It's only plant that will grow in total darkness skin within approximately 10 minutes of is the mushroom, and I'm sure none of us cuttings, but only a very tmportant to remember that a contact with a mild soap and warm water leaf and about half houseplant, contained as it is in a pot-- want a rung'us among us. to remove toxins. Do not rub to the point an inch of stem even a terra-cotta pot with adequate But there are of irritation," Dr. Zugerman advises. should be used. Sub- drainage--can only accept a certain "'If itching starts, apply a medicated some plants which amount of water before its roots begin to will grow with a cream or lotion, such as lvarest, that rot. So err on the side of underwatering-- minimum of light-- contains an astringent to dry oozing blis- make it a rule of green thumb to feel the on a coffee table, in ters and an anesthetic to relieve pain and soil of your plants and only water when a shady corner, or in itching, as well as an antiseptic to prevent the soil feels dry to the touch, a shadowy entrysecondary infection. hall. My recom-"Alter initially washing, keep hot wa- mended "night peo- tel soap, and rough clothing away from pie" include: Aspidistra, Philodendron, the affected area. Avoid caffeine and al- Pothos, Spathyphyllum, Sansevieria, cobol, which can increase itching. Warm Neanthe Bells (or dwarf) Palm, Kentia compresses can be soothing. If the rash Palm, or any of several Dracaenas, in- becomes severe, consult your physician," cluding D. Massangeana, D. Craigii, or he adds. D. Marginata. Despite the fact that Americans re- portedly have been warned about a skin Plants that are not getting much sun- rash caused by touching plants as far light should be watered less than those on back as Captain John Smith and his early the windowsills--feel the soil and only settlers, the problems persist--and the water when it's dry to the touch. Keep plants flourish in virtually every state, in the humidity up, but for those plants in forests, backyards, and unsuspected ur- dark places, cut the fertilizing in half-- ban sites. Here are a few basics to pin on X~-w~ feed only about once a month your refrigerator door, garden shed or Happy Growing! camostove: (A. PoLaon Ivy; B. Po/mn Oak; C. Azalea; D. Po/son Sumac; E. Rose; F,i STEP CAREFULLY! l.earning to distinguish poiaon ivy, poison oak, sumac leaves from other, friendlier species is the firm rule How do you score in identifying the plants shown here? lllum-atio~ Ivarem imimn ivy medication. If you'd like to create a "cooling" dec- Create the atmosphere orative effect indoors during the summer rearranging the plants months, stock up on lush houseplants, planning new arrangeme This recommendation comes from the plants as room accents; don Garden Council, whose members include where they'll fade into a leading firms and professionals repre- few large plants can be senting the lawn and garden industry, tive dements in a room. Council members say that outdoors, Pay attentmn to light foliage has the invaluable role of provid- Plants ing shade, and indoors, a garden of must be in an area that will houseplants will make rooms look less conditions. If your rooms warm than they are. sufficient natural light, For exar',ple, full cascading ferns lighting. Once you've evoke the feeling of a cool forest, and a right lighting conditions, small ivy-covered trellis for dressing win- similar light dows conjures up the sense of an evening New containers for on the back porch, also change the According to several studies, indoor of lawn and garden greenery also helps people relax. And assortment of pots in that's the marketing secret behind those ors, styles, and textures. peaceful interior landscapes you find in look in the kitchen us shopping malls. Shoppers find the plant- wood containers. In filled environment calming and they slow bedrooms, use painted down, spending more time in the stores And remember, if you'r and more money on store merchandise, cide on colors for your In offices, workers claim that plants ira- darker colors such as blue, prove the appearance of the workplace let. These are better for and reduce tension, ing effect. EASTER LILIES ....................... I HYACINTH asst. colors 6 I/2 Pot In Bloom TULIPS 7" pot, asst. colors In bloom ......... [ DAFFODILS 6 1/2 pot In Bloom .......... I AZALE.AS lO" pot. asst. colors In bloom ...,. $8' I Reager BEGONIAS 6 1/2 pot, asst, colors tn bloor I' I: GE, A 8" pot in bloom .................... I AFRICAN VIOLETS asst. colors 4 1/2" pot S Martha Washington GERANIUMS 7" pot In bloom $6.99 I Kennebec SEED POTATOES 50 lb. bag Sure Crop STRAWBERRY PLANTS 25 for I HOLLAND ONION SETS ..... 9sl Rug JUNIPERS I gal size .......... 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