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Originally published February 9, 2012 at 3:30 PM | Page modified February 9, 2012 at 4:09 PM

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Love grows: 5 plants to give for Valentine's Day and beyond

Five houseplants that make good gifts. Plus, plant-care tips.

Daily Press (Newport News, Va

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Why give fresh flowers for Valentine's Day, only to know they will soon die. Instead, give an easy-care houseplant that keeps on living and giving.

Costa Farms, which grows indoor and outdoor plants for specialty retail sales, recommends these five houseplants for year-round enjoyment. You can get Costa Farms' Growing Style free app for your iPad or Android free at www.growingstylemag.com.

Check with your local garden center and nursery to select a plant that is appropriate for your area.

Anthurium

Anthuriums are subtropical favorites with varieties growing in such diverse areas as South America and the Pacific. They are perfect as cut flowers or as potted plants in varying sizes. They are popular around Valentine's Day, Mother's Day and Easter. To get them to flower continuously, place in a filtered light location and fertilize during the growing season. The plant should be kept clean of all yellow or decaying leaves.

Resiliency: Tolerant

Light: Medium

Temperature: Never below 50 degree

Watering: Keep soil moist, but do not let the plant stand in water or let the soil dry out

Average size: 12-24 inches tall and 12-24 inches wide

Fertilizer: Feed every two to four months

Uses: Windows, bright dining and living areas

Sago palm

The Sago palm has become a very popular landscape item, but most people don't realize that it is not a palm at all, but rather a Cycad, a totally different type of plant. Cycads, sometimes called "living fossils," are among the most ancient plants in the world. They date as far back as prehistoric times before flowering plants appeared. Today, cycads make up more than 100 species of plants characterized by spiny leaves and thick trunks.

Resiliency: Tolerant

Light: High

Temperature: Never below 40 degrees

Watering: Keep soil moist, but do not let the plant stand in water or let the soil dry out

Average size: 3-4 feet tall and wide

Fertilizer: Feed every six months

Uses: Sunrooms and other high-light living spaces

Peace lily

Spathiphyllum, also known as the peace lily, is a very popular indoor houseplant. In the warmest parts of Florida you find the plant the landscape; it performs best in the shade with protection from wind and temperatures below 55 degrees.

Resiliency: Tolerant

Light: Low to high

Temperature: Never below 50 degrees

Watering: Keep soil moist, but do not let the plant stand in water or let the soil dry out

Average size: 2-3 feet tall and 3 feet wide

Fertilizer: Feed every two to four months

Uses: Windows, low-light dining and living areas

Boston fern

The Boston fern is the quintessential decorative fern. It is the original fern used during the Victorian Era to decorate inside the home as well as outside on wraparound porches. Like other ferns, the Boston fern enjoys high humidity and consistently moist soil. This plant lends any area a lush and rich look.

Resiliency: Tolerant

Light: Low to medium

Temperature: Never below 50 degrees

Watering: Keep soil moist, but do not let the plant stand in water or let the soil dry out

Average size: 2 feet tall and wide

Uses: Windows, porches and patios

Moth orchid

The Phalaenopsis is commonly referred to as a "moth orchid" and is one of the easiest members of the orchid family to care for. Ideal for areas where they receive indirect sunlight, they offer a delicate and striking touch to any environment or décor.

Resiliency: Tolerant

Light: Low to indirect

Temperature: Ideal in 60-85 degrees, never below 50 degrees

Watering: Let moss dry out between watering and do not let plant stand in water

Average size: Varies

Fertilizer: These orchids flower best and are at their healthiest when fertilized on a regular basis. Use a well-balanced formulation such as 20-20-20 or a ratio that is similar.

Uses: Phalaenopsis like little of no direct light on their leaves. They are more of a shade orchid.

Caution: Keep these houseplants away from children and pets.

Kathy is gardening columnist for the Daily Press, Newport News, Va.; email her at kvanmullekom@aol.com; follow her blog at roomandyard.com/diggin.

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