07-19-2018  2:51 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
Sheba, basking in botanical splendor (Photo courtesy of Dr. Streeter)
Dr. Jasmine Streeter, DVM
Published: 11 July 2018

Indoor gardening with my pets gives me respite from the stressors of life. Before beginning my indoor plant journey two years ago, I never would have imagined that pets and plants enjoyed each other. Watching these beautiful creatures flourish together in my personal enchanted garden brings me joy and peace. Below I’ve listed Sheba and Soleil’s top 10 foliage favorites for you and your fur babies to enjoy.

dr.jasmine plants medDr. Jasmine's indoor garden1. The Purple Wandering Jew (Tradescantia zebrine) is a gem for any indoor gardener. Soleil loves sitting next to this plant during dinner. High light produces shimmering green and white leaves on top and purple leaves on the underside, giving the appearance of a royal carpet. This plant makes a wonderful hanging basket and is easy to propagate in water.

2. Ficus (Figs) are easy-going plants that come in a variety of species. Cats and dogs love taking shade under the big leaves of the India Rubber Tree or beloved Weeping Fig. For a smaller space, try the Creeping Fig as a unique topiary.

3. Ferns make an enchanting and refreshing addition to any pet-friendly home. These humidity-loving plants make exceptional air purifiers and require medium to bright filtered light. Ferns can be kept in a secret terrarium away from boisterous puppies or allowed to stretch their bird-like fronds in magnificent glory.

4. Succulents are a fun and artistic way of decorating a pet bedroom or play space. These plants have thick, waxy leaves and require little water, making them perfect for a sunny windowsill or high shelf.

5. The Japanese Fatsia is a tolerant shrubby houseplant that can grow to six feet high. With bold coarse leaves that can survive a sliding door or busy hallway, this plant is perfect for the active pet owner.

6. The goldfish plant (Columnea) is a tropical plant with brilliantly colored orange flowers that resemble goldfish. I have one in my home that my pets adore. This plant allows me to fulfill my goldfish and plant dreams all in one.

7. Dracaena is an extremely popular low-light plant that makes an excellent air purifier. They are low-maintenance and perfect for the busy pet owner. My Madagascar Dragontree thrives even though Soleil bites its leaves to get my attention when I’m ignoring her.

8. Grasses make excellent indoor plants and are entertaining enrichment for pets. Some grasses are edible, while others grow to exceptional height making them perfect for pets stalking stuffed toys in the jungle.

9. The Ponytail Palm is a must-have succulent for the neglectful gardener. The curly thin leaves give the appearance of a bouncy green afro and make wonderful enrichment for lounging under, walking around or swatting.

10. The Monstera Deliciosa or Swiss-Cheese Plant makes a dramatic statement with its majestic foliage. This queen of the rainforest has large split leaves and can grow to 15 feet high. Sheba takes great pleasure slowly circling through her foliage for hours.

Hopefully your pets enjoy your plants as much as mine do. Happy gardening!

You can ask Dr. Jasmine your pet question or email your pet photo to drjasmine@theskanner.com.

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