Garden Photo of the Day

Nicki’s Indoor Garden

Windowsills keep flowers coming all winter

close up of yellow and pink orchid

Today’s photos are from Nicki Snoblin in Lake Bluff, Illinois.

Since there’s not much going on outside right now, I thought I’d share some indoor photos.

To keep away the winter blahs, I like to have as much color and variety as possible in my indoor plants. Cats are #1 in our house (after the humans), so I have to be careful about plant placement to keep both the plants and the cats safe. I have plastic shelving units in front of the few sunny windows in my house; they’re not classy, but they do the job.

various colorful houseplants in a sunny windowI usually have African violets (Streptocarpus ionanthus) blooming in winter, and the last two years I’ve been fortunate to have orchids bloom as well.

close up of yellow and pink orchidThis yellow orchid is Blc. Hsinying Sunbeam ‘#15’.

close up of purple moth orchidAnd here is a purple moth orchid (Phalaenopsis hybrid).

various houseplants growing on a tiered stand in front of a windowAt Christmas this year I had a nice bright poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima) along with a few Christmas cactus (Schlumbergera × buckleyi) in bloom.

close up of pink Christmas cactus flower with other pink flowers in the backgroundClose-up of the Christmas cactus flower

potted spider plants growing on a shelf with other houseplantsI grew some spider plants (Chlorophytum comosum ‘Variegatum’, Zones 8–11) in pots outside last summer, and they were doing so well I couldn’t bear to get rid of them in fall, so in they came. I found other homes for a few of them, and the remaining ones are on a high shelf. I put a mirror behind them in the hope that the reflected light would keep the backs from dying off. In spring I’ll plant the “babies” in my outdoor pots.

potted plants in front of a window in winterIn another window I have a few plants that came indoors for the winter.

close up of oxalis leaves with spotsOne, an oxalis (Oxalis triangularis, Zones 7–11), flourished during its summer outdoors, but now the leaves have become spotted. Any idea what may be causing that? Interesting fact: I have had this oxalis plant for 50 years, ever since my college botany professor gave me a few corms. Since the plant periodically dies back and then rejuvenates itself, the original corms are probably long gone, but I still count it as the same plant.

potted plants and bulbs insideFinally, I overwinter several crinum lilies (Crinum asiaticum) and amaryllis (Hippeastrum hybrids) each year. I usually force the amaryllis, but this year I decided to try keeping them at room temperature all winter and will plant them outside in the spring to see if they will bloom. Wish me luck!


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View Comments


  1. sandyprowse 02/14/2023

    Wonderful! Just what I needed to start off my day was this blast of colour. Thank. You.

  2. grannie55 02/14/2023

    Beautiful and cheerful in winter! I love the colors and variety. Thanks for sharing.

  3. janeeliz 02/14/2023

    What a lovely collection, Nicki.! Thanks for such exuberant color on this dreary day.

  4. user-7392754 02/14/2023

    Wow!!! So many blooming plants!!! The wall color behind your spider plants really shows off the greens - I love it!!!

  5. btucker9675 02/14/2023

    So jealous of your African violets and orchids... as always when I see photos of others' successes, I am tempted to try, try again. Fabulous!

  6. User avater
    cynthia2020 02/14/2023

    Nicki - nice collection, thank you for sharing!

  7. User avater
    simplesue 02/14/2023

    Just love seeing your Spider Plants, was just thinking about those yesterday. Love Oxalis!
    Oh yes, cat are number one here too, windowsill plants have to share space with them.

    "Flat Earth Theory - If the earth was flat, cats would have pushed everything off it by now."

  8. User avater
    treasuresmom 02/14/2023

    It all is so pretty.

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