wavemaster
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Possible to Keep Norfolk Island Pine Indoors?

Has anyone kept a Norfolk Island Pine indoors? Any tips for success?
Will a North Window provide enough light?
The tree was sprayed with glitter and the trunk appears to have been painted green. What kind of effect would this have on the tree if any?

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applestar
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So obviously you got one of those decorated "Christmas trees". :D

My daughter received one of those a few years ago and we still have it, so I'll tell you what I know:

Don't worry about the glitter, etc. just take any removable decorations off after the holidays. If you can, set the plant outside in spring for vacation until just before next fall frost, and most or all that stuff will weather off. :wink:

If you look close, you'll probably see that there are several plants jammed together in this pot. Ours had 4 or 5.

This means the soil will dry out quickly and need frequent watering. I found that it worked best to go by heft test -- water thoroughly and let excess water drain out. Do this couple more times until the soil is saturated, but don't let the pot sit in the extra water. Now pick up the pot with one (or two) hand and *FEEL* how heavy it is. THAT'S YOUR BENCHMARK. When the pot feels light when hefted (or if the plant falls over from being top-heavy :roll:), water thoroughly again. Use de-chlorinated water (leave bucket of tap water overnight or 24 hrs to outgas) or filtered water.

Norfolk Island Pine tolerates low light, but it's better to grow it in somewhat better light. Otherwise, the internodes get elongated and gangly with weak growth. So I would recommend East or West window. Supplemental fluorescent light would be good too. So if you have a bright fluorescent desk or undercabinet light, you could fit it with daylight 5500-6500K bulb and leave it on for approx 16 hrs each day. If using compact fluorescent, get 26W.

This plant should be kept at 55°F or higher and doesn't like low humidity -- so I found it best to set it on a riser (rocks, upside down plastic takeout tray or tuna cans, etc) inside a larger deep tray or a bucket. I let the excess water drain and sit in the bottom but not touching the plant's container, which evaporate to provide extra humidity. I also mist thoroughly with filtered water every morning.

It's early to talk about it, but when putting it outside, I choose a location under canopy of a tree where it gets some morning direct sun then dappled sun for the rest of the day. You'll probably need to Uppot to a larger container at that time.

wavemaster
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Thanks for the tips. Good to hear these Christmas trees can survive. I removed the foil over the pot so extra water can drain. It looks really nice, but maybe its just all that green paint.

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ElizabethB
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Hang in there. Give it a west or south window over winter. Then put it outside with morning sun over spring and summer. Pot up as needed. Lovely plant. In south Louisiana they stay outside most of the year. Under a tree or patio cover to protect from frost and brought in on the nights when there is a rare freeze. Put back out as soon as the temps get over freezing.

If you do have multiple plants in in your pot split them up next spring. Just be real gentle with the roots.
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

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tomf
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I had one indoors for years untill it got to big, then I planted it out side. keep it near a window.

tomc
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Re: Possible to Keep Norfolk Island Pine Indoors?

wavemaster wrote:Has anyone kept a Norfolk Island Pine indoors? Any tips for success? Will a North Window provide enough light?
With enough supplimental light (it is NOT cold hearty) and bonsai soil maybe.

With peat based soil and a north window; no.
The tree was sprayed with glitter and the trunk appears to have been painted green. What kind of effect would this have on the tree if any?
Give the tree what it actually needs and it may grow past commercial mistreatment.
Think like a tree
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