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Houseplants are a great way to add some beautiful greenery to your home. So if you are looking forward to expanding your gardening collections, why not try out some houseplants that start with the letter M?
It ranges from delicate maranta plants to the popular prayer plant. However, there are plenty of options to choose from.
In this article, we will be exploring some of the best houseplants that start with M and how best to care for them.
Types Of Houseplants That Start With M
Below are the greenery houseplants that can lighten up your home with some awesome scents and styles.
1. Maranta Plant
The maranta plant which is also known as the prayer plant is a low-growing plant that native to Brazil. Its common name originated from its leaves’ way of staying flat during the day and folding up later in the night as praying hands.
Among all other tropical plants, it is one of the most distinguishable. It has a popular tricolour variety with deep green, velvety leaves with yellow splotches down the midrib and arching red veins travelling to the leaf margins.
Furthermore, as a slow-grower, it can reach up to q foot in height indoors. They are fairly popular as houseplants and can be planted and cared for indoors at any time of the year. Even so, they are still not easy to keep growing or blooming over a long period.
Maranta Plant Care Requirements
Maranta plants are low-growing, spreading houseplants that thrive best when it is placed in greenhouse-like conditions including warm, moist, gentle airflow, and plenty of fertilizer.
Maranta plants are generally tolerant of lower-light areas. During winter, when the plant will be dormant, it is important to watch out so as to provide or expose them to a bright light to maintain its growth.
Keep your plant near a window where it will receive indirect sunlight. However, avoid keeping them in direct sunlight as the sun will scorch the plant’s leaves or the leaves that develop blotches which fade in colour.
B. Soil Mix
It grows best in a variety of soils with a well-draining traditional potting mix. However, you can make your own potting mix by combining two parts: loamy soil and perlite or coarse sand together. It is called sphagnum peat moss. In addition, the soil must be acidic with a pH of 6.0.
During the plant’s growing season, it is important that you water the plants frequently especially whenever the top layer becomes dry and never allow the potting soil to dry out completely.
Also, these plants are very susceptible to drought and will not survive long if left unwatered. So always do the needful and make your plant happy.
Furthermore, avoid fungal problems which are caused by allowing water to sit directly on your plant. Do well to grow the plant with a well-draining pot. Also, always use water that is at least room temperature if not slightly warm.
D. Temperature & Humidity
Maranta plants prefer normal household temperatures between 60°F-80°F. However, prolonged lower temperatures can damage the leaves and cause them to drop from the plant. Additionally, it thrives best in a very humid environment.
If the humidity level isn’t enough, you can increase the humidity level by placing a small humidifier nearby, or placing the plant on top of a tray that has been filled with small stones and water. You can further mist the leaves frequently with room temperature or slightly warm water.
It is important that you fertilize your maranta plant every two weeks from early spring through fall. However, reduce it to once a month during winter with a water-soluble houseplant fertilizer diluted to half-strength.
Bear in mind that if you use too little fertilizer, your plant will grow slowly or hardly at all. However, avoid using too much fertilizer as it can burn the plant’s roots and also its leaves which will start to turn brown and the plant can even die.
Propagating your maranta plants is quite very easy especially when it is done with the easy method which is by dividing the plant while repotting.
a. When repotting your plant, divide it into several smaller plants by gently shaking the soil off the roots and working them apart.
b. Ensure each new plant has a good mass of roots and several stems.
c. Pot these new smaller plants separately into shallow pots and keep the new divisions very warm and moist during the first few weeks until new growth emerges.
G. Common Problems Of Maranta Plants
Just like other houseplants, maranta plants are susceptible to pests such as spider mites and mealybugs. If you notice any signs of infestation of these pests on your plant, you can treat them by using a natural Insecticide such as neem oil.
2. Monstera Deliciosa
Also known as the split-leaf philodendron or Swiss cheese plant. It is a tropical plant that is often kept as a houseplant. It is an easy-to-grow climbing evergreen that can be found in many designer spaces for its nice factor. It has glossy and heart-shaped spoiled leaves.
It can grow up to about 1 to 2 feet a year; it takes about three years before you have a full-grown monstera.
Monstera deliciosa grows best in humid and warm environments, requiring dappled or partial light, acidic or neutral, well-drained peat-based soil, and temperatures between 65 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. This beautiful plant is toxic to humans and pets.
Monstera Deliciosa Care Requirements
Here are the main care requirements for growing a Monstera deliciosa:
This evergreen prefers bright, indirect sunlight between 65°Fand 75°F. Outdoors, the Swiss cheese plant can grow in the full shade of deep woodlands and semi-shade of light forests. Too much direct light in warmer months may burn the foliage. Still, set indoor plants outside at least once a year in direct sunlight to encourage lush growth.
B. Soil Mix
When established in a container, it requires peat-based potting media. However, while outdoors, it is suitable for light sandy, medium loamy, and heavy clay soils with acid or neutral pH.
Even so, it thrives most in well-drained, moderately moist soil. You’ll also spot intricate aerial roots growing out of the soil, which benefit the plant by supporting the stems that hold leaves that can grow up to 3 feet long.
Give the plant regular watering during the growing season every one to two weeks. Water until excess drains through drainage holes. However, avoid returning the excess water to the plant’s container because it has taken all the necessary water.
The soil will need to dry out slightly in between waterings. Water only occasionally in fall and winter. However, to increase humidity indoors, mist the foliage using a spray bottle of demineralized water or rainwater.
More HousePlants: Houseplants That Start With A
D. Temperature & Humidity
Monstera deliciosa grows best in temperatures between 65°F and 85°. It can tolerate temperatures down to 50°F and up to 90°F but will stop growing at these extremes.
Also, it prefers high humidity, about 60%. To increase the humidity level, you can mist it or provide a humidifier to keep its leaves moist daily.
Choose a balanced liquid 20-20-20 fertilizer to feed the plant every few weeks during the growing season. Dilute 1/2 teaspoon of the fertilizer in a gallon of water.
Use the diluted fertilizer in place of regular watering. Pour the mixture into the soil until it begins to flow out of the drainage holes. Throw out the excess diluted fertilizer because the plant has taken what it needs and cannot use the extra that it drains off.
The Swiss cheese plant will likely outgrow its pot every two years or more. So there is need to replant when necessary.
However, transplant into a pot a few inches wider and deeper to accommodate growth. However, pot the plant using these simple steps:
a. Fill the bottom third of a pot with peaty potting soil.
b. Establish a stake gently for the stem to climb on.
c. Set the roots into the container. Fill with soil around the roots.
d. Firmly surround the stake with soil and use plant ties to attach the stem to the stake.
Monstera deliciosa can be easily propagated by stem cuttings from pruning. However, the most popular method of propagating Monstera deliciosa is air layering. To propagate with stem cuttings:
a. Using a clean, sharp pruning shear, cut off a stem that includes a node (a little bump where the roots will emerge), an aerial root, and at least two leaves.
b. Put a dash of ground cinnamon the usual spice you can get at the grocery store on the mother plant where you cut. This will prevent the disease from entering the cut and help the wound heal.
c. Put the cutting in a glass of water. Change the water every three to five days, and if possible, use filtered water or rainwater over tap water.
d. You will see a clump of roots growing in a couple of months. At that point, you can put your new plant in a pot with fresh soil and keep it moist as it establishes itself in its new home.
To propagate with air layering:
a. Find a stem with a couple of nodes (where the roots will grow). Or you can find a leaf growing out of a stem with a short aerial root below it.
b. Cut a small notch about 1/3 of the stem’s width below that root and wrap a 1-inch layer of sphagnum moss around where the leaf joins the stem.
c. Spray the moss with water to increase moisture, and wrap it in plastic. Use twist ties to secure it.
d. Ensure the moss can remain moist until the roots develop and when roots develop in a few months, you can cut with a clean, sharp tool the stem below the roots and establish the young plant, with its roots, in a fresh pot of soil.
e. Don’t forget to pat ground cinnamon on the wound created by the mother plant. This will stop any disease from entering the cut and help the wound heal.
3. Musa Veultina
Also known as the pink velvet banana tree. It is generally grown for its highly ornamental value rather than for the small, pink, hairy bananas that it produces.
However, this plant might be referred to as a tree, but it doesn’t tend to grow over six feet in height, and the abundant leaf stalks at the base mean it more closely resembles a giant, sturdy herb.
Despite being a tropical perennial, it’s surprisingly cold and hardy. In warmer regions, it remains evergreen and although not as spectacular as when it’s in bloom, it can still add some winter interest to your garden.
It also does well in containers and can be overwintered indoors or throughout the year. Just be aware that pink velvet banana trees kept in containers won’t grow as large as outdoor specimens. Progressing into the summer, the pink banana will display pretty cream-coloured flowers that have pink bracts. By late summer to early fall, the plant produces a sweet, tangy, fuzzy fruit that opens itself as it ripens.
Furthermore, it has a small, white-fleshed fruit, which is soft and edible, and contains lots of tough black seeds that are tricky to pick out. The seeds are inedible and hard enough to damage teeth. However, another great thing about this plant is that it grows quickly, plus it can produce flowers and fruit in its first established season.
Musa Velutina Tree Care Requirements
This plant is considered one of the hardiest and easiest-to-grow of all tropical banana tree species.
It prefers a sheltered position out of harsh winds. Although they like the sun or partial shade, intense direct sunlight can damage the foliage.
B. Soil Mix
This plant thrives in fertile, humusy, moist, well-drained soil and does best with a slightly acidic pH level. However, during the growing season, in the spring and summer, this plant will appreciate being fed regularly with fertilizer.
Ensure that you always keep the soil consistently moist, but not waterlogged, especially through the spring and summer.
Bear in mind that this isn’t a drought-tolerant plant. However, if the soil or potting mix becomes dried out, it can inhibit healthy growth.
Additionally, watering of the plant should be cut back significantly through the winter season to avoid problems.
D. Temperature & Humidity
Musa veutine prefer warmer climates and do best in regions where the temperature sits around 65°F-75°F.
Despite this, they’re a comparatively resilient banana family species. Although the foliage can die off or turn brown at the edges if temperatures hit as low as 30°F, it will still grow back healthy once spring arrives.
Furthermore, if you plan to leave the plant outdoors in a zone where temperatures drop to freezing, then you must ensure that you protect the base of your tree with a layer of heavy mulch to insulate the roots.
If your musa veutine suffers from severe frost damage over the winter, it’s best to cut it right back to encourage healthy regrowth in the spring. Also, if there are old, browning leaves that can be removed to make way for new and vigorous ones.
You can propagate your musa veutine plant by taking cuttings from the rhizomatous roots. All you need to do is to keep the soil warm and moist while they germinate, and they’ll appreciate being dipped in rooting hormone.
4. Mistletoe Cactus
The mistletoe cactus which is also known as Rhipsalis baccifera is a tropical epiphytic plant in the cactus family that is beloved as a houseplant for its unique pencil-thin foliage and trailing growth habit. Native to tropical and subtropical regions in South America, Central America, and Africa, the mistletoe cactus grows naturally on tree branches beneath the forest canopy, pulling moisture and nutrients from the air around it and the host plant.
However, just like other epiphytic plants such as orchids, air plants, bromeliads, and some types of ferns, the mistletoe cactus has adapted well to indoor growing and is popular as a houseplant. Its trailing stems look great in hanging baskets and its striking foliage is sure to liven up any room.
Mistletoe Cactus Care Requirements
The mistletoe cactus is generally low-maintenance and easy to grow indoors.
The mistletoe cactus is sensitive to direct sunlight and prefers a location that receives bright to medium indirect light. It also does well when placed within lower-light locations, although you won’t see as much growth.
B. Soil Mix
The mistletoe cactus requires a moist but well-draining potting mix and prefers soil that is slightly acidic. However, just for this plant to survive in standard commercial potting soil, it will thrive in a potting mixture that is designed for its specific needs.
You can make your own potting mix by trying to combine one part of regular potting mix, one part orchid bark, and one part perlite together for a potting mix that is rich, airy, and well-draining.
It prefers that its soil is kept evenly moist, and should not be allowed to dry out completely. So, avoid waterlogging the soil by ensuring that your pot has proper drainage and that your soil mixture allows water to flow through it.
Furthermore, allow the top 1-2 inches of soil to dry out between waterings.
D. Temperature & Humidity
Given that the mistletoe cactus is native to tropical and subtropical regions, it thrives in warm, humid conditions. For the most part, average household temperatures work well for the mistletoe cactus which is why it is so popular as a houseplant.
Just ensure that temperatures stay between 60°F-80°F (16-27°C) and watch your plant bloom with flowers. However, you may need to provide some extra humidity for your mistletoe cactus to ensure that the stems don’t start to dry out.
You can try placing a pebble tray filled with water beneath the plant, or place a small humidifier nearby.
The mistletoe cactus loves to be regularly fertilized throughout the growing season, although it is considered a light feeder.
Apply a balanced liquid fertilizer diluted to half strength to your mistletoe cactus once a month during the spring and summer.
Like most succulents, the mistletoe cactus can be easily propagated by stem cuttings. However, it is best to propagate your cactus during its active growing period, so avoid taking cuttings during the fall and winter when the plant has gone into dormancy. Below are the steps to follow to propagate your mistletoe cactus by stem cuttings:
a. Using a sterilized pair of sharp scissors or pruning shears, take 3-4 inch cuttings from your plant.
b. Set the fresh cuttings in a cool, dry location for 24 hours so that the cut end can callous over before planting.
c. Prepare a potting container with a mixture of regular potting soil and perlite, and lightly moisten the soil.
d. Press the end of the cuttings into the prepared soil, ensuring that the cuttings are facing the same way that they were growing before. Avoid planting them upside down.
e. Place the freshly potted cuttings in a location that receives medium indirect light and keep the soil lightly moist until you see signs of new growth.
f. Once the cuttings are growing they are considered established and regular care can be resumed.
G. Common Problems Of Mistletoe Cactus
Mistletoe cactus plants don’t encounter many issues of the infestation of pests and diseases. However, if you do notice problems with your mistletoe cactus, it is likely a result of either over-watering or under-watering. So, ensure that you water your plant and avoid overwatering it. You can use a watering can to water your plant if you usually overwater them.
5. Money Tree
Also commonly referred to as Guiana chestnut, is a species of tree native to Central and South America that has become an attractive, easy-care houseplant. It was first popularized as a houseplant in Taiwan during the 1980s. It is so prominent among those who practice feng shui and is believed to create positive “chi,” or energy, in the home. That alone has made it a staple in offices, banks, and homes.
It is commonly sold as small plants with a braided trunk made up of three, five, or seven stems. The trees are braided by nurseries when they are young and will continue to grow this way as they mature.
Furthermore, it is rarely grown from home as a seed, but if you do plan to plant the tree outdoors, you should start it from seed in the spring. The trees will grow quickly indoors or outdoors, often adding up to 24 inches a year in height.
Money Tree Care Requirements
Below are the ways that you can care for your plant. They include
When grown outdoors, these plants can tolerate direct sunlight, but when indoors, this plant will need some specific light requirements. They should be placed in bright to medium indirect sunlight, for at least 6 hours a day. If you don’t have a sunny window that provides enough light, this plant will also do well under fluorescent light.
B. Soil Mix
It thrives best in a well-draining, nutrient-rich potting soil. A peat moss-based mixture would be ideal, but a standard quick-draining soil mixture such as regular cactus or flower soil will also work.
Furthermore, if your soil requires more drainage, you can amend the mixture with sand or gravel.
You should water your plant often and regularly, each time the top inch of soil is dry. Typically watering money trees should become more frequent in the spring and summer months and less frequent in the fall and winter.
Also, it is important that you are careful not to overwater them, as doing so can quickly kill them. The best way to avoid overwatering your plant is to ensure that the potting container and the soil have the proper drainage.
D. Temperature & Humidity
Keep your plant at the right temperature and humidity level. If not in the right room temperature, it will cause your plant to wilt.
You can increase the humidity level of your room or the location where the money tree plant is kept, especially if it is not sufficient with a cool-mist humidifier or on a tray of pebbles.
Your money tree needs fertilizer. Fertilize your plant monthly throughout the spring and summer, when the plant is actively producing new leaves, and bi-monthly throughout the fall and winter.
Preferably, use a basic fertilizer blend that has been diluted to half-strength as it will work best.
It is an important part of caring for your money tree, especially if you wish to braid it or train the plant as a bonsai or control its size.
So therefore, regular pruning of the lower leaves can also help to encourage new growth at the top of the plant.
G. Common Propagation
Money tree plants are easy enough to grow and maintain, but they usually encounter some problems such as
a. Soft Stems/Trunk
If the stems or trunk is becoming too soft and heading towards mushy, then it is a clear indication that you are overwatering your plant. So avoid overwatering your plant. Preferably, you can use a watering can to water the plants.
b. Leggy Plant
If you notice there’s no new leaf growth and the plant looks too leggy, it may mean you are not giving it enough light. So therefore, relocate your money tree plant from its current location to a new location where there is enough light to go around.
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6. Manuka Plant
This New Zealand tea tree also known as Leptospermum scoparium is an upright evergreen shrub that features small, prickly, needle-like leaves, which are aromatic when crushed. In early summer, the plant produces showy single or double white, pink, or red blossoms that are attractive to bees and other pollinators.
This plant produces a honey which is known as manuka honey. It is a popular honey for culinary uses and alternative medicine, and is produced from the nectar that bees gather from this plant.
Furthermore, this shrub, which is planted in the fall or spring, can be a container-grown plant or used as a garden specimen. It has a moderately slow growth rate, making it an excellent choice for containers.
Manuka Plant Care Requirements
Below are the care tips that can guide you on how best to grow your plant for better results.
This plant prefers a location with the full sun though it can tolerate a little shade. However, it will bloom a lot of flowers if it is located at a place with full sunlight.
It is best grown in fertile, slightly acidic soil. Also, its planting site also needs good drainage. The plant is fairly tolerant of poor, infertile soil, though it doesn’t like heavy soil. You can amend heavy clay soil with compost or other organic matter to improve drainage.
Ensure that you water young manuka plants regularly so the soil remains consistently moist. However, avoid letting the plant sit in soggy soil.
Furthermore, these plants like a more moderate moisture level, and they have some drought tolerance. So, you will typically only have to water them if the soil begins to dry out from a lack of rainfall.
D. Temperature and Humidity
Manuka plants thrive in hardy USDA cold hardiness zones of 9 to 10. It grows best in warm climates and doesn’t do well once the outdoor temperature drops below 40°F.
However, if you live in a cooler climate, you can still grow this plant outdoors in a container. Bring the container indoors each winter and provide it with as much sunlight as possible.
Move it outdoors in the spring once the temperature is consistently above 40°F. Also, it will grow well in high humidity, and it can tolerate dry climates if you water it on a regular basis.
Manuka plants typically don’t require regular feeding when planted outdoors unless the soil is infertile. However, it can benefit from a layer of compost or mulch in the spring as well as a balanced fertilizer every two to three years.
Additionally, if the plant overgrown the container, the plant will deplete soil nutrients faster and will likely need feeding every year with a balanced fertilizer.
This plant doesn’t need much in the way of pruning beyond removing dead, damaged, or diseased wood. Right after the plant has finished flowering, you can prune it to maintain its shape, encourage bushier growth, and promote more blooms. Avoid cutting back more than one-third of the plant at one time.
Smaller varieties of this plant will do very well in large, well-draining pots filled with ordinary potting mix blended with sand to improve drainage. However, they prefer not to have their roots disturbed, so choose a large pot that gives the plant room to grow.
When repotting becomes necessary, choose a larger pot and remove the plant carefully, using additional fresh soil around the existing root ball. Repotting is best done in spring.
The best method of propagating your plant is through stem cutting. Below is how to propagate by stem cuttings:
a. In early summer, use sharp, clean pruners to clip off a segment of stem containing mostly new growth with slightly hardened older wood at the base.
b. Dampen the cut end of the stem, and dip it in the rooting hormone.
c. Plant the cutting in a mixture of perlite and peat moss or commercial potting mix.
d. To speed up root development, place a plastic bag over the cutting to create a mini-greenhouse environment. Remove the bag when you tug on the cutting and you feel resistance from developing roots.
e. Keep the plant in a sunny window and water it whenever the soil dries out.
f. Once new leaves begin to appear, harden off the cutting to acclimate it to the outdoors.
g. Continue growing outdoors in the container until it’s a sufficient size to plant in the garden. This can take several years, and you might need to repot occasionally as the plant grows larger.
I. Common Problems Of Manuka Plant
This plant typically doesn’t have problems with pests and diseases. However, sometimes, it is infested by webbing caterpillars, borers, and scales. You can get rid of them through the use of horticultural oils such as neem oil which is a good treatment for pest problems.
Also, this plant can be prone to root rot if it’s planted in overly-moist soil that doesn’t drain well. The best remedy is to provide the correct growing conditions.
Houseplants that start with M offer a diverse range of choices for anyone looking to add some greenery to their home. However, there’s always a plant for every taste, style and space. Most importantly, not only do these plants add beauty to your home, but they can also improve air quality and boost your mood.
It is important to remember that each plant has its unique requirements and preferences. Before selecting a new houseplant, be sure to research its individual needs and ensure that you can provide the necessary care.
With a little bit of effort and attention, you can create a thriving indoor garden that brings joy and beauty to your life. So why not explore the world of houseplants that start with M and discover the perfect addition to your home today?