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Desperate houseplants

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Production team Production team | 11:35 UK time, Thursday, 23 July 2009

I don't generally approve of plants in houses - they never look quite comfortable, not in my home, at least. I've been lucky enough to travel to places where Ficus benjamina are the size of oak trees and Monstera deliciosa are climbing towards a forest canopy. For me it just doesn't feel right to grow them next to the TV.

hawaiin_palm.jpgBut it's a plantaholic's prerogative to change their mind. So I must confess I was secretly delighted to discover at Tatton what could become my ideal houseplant.
The Hawaiian palm (brighamia) is not so much a jungle escapee desperately pining for the rainforest - it's more of an endangered species in need of fostering. Raised from seed by Dutch nursery Plant Planet, these beautiful plants can be grown happily in your living room. And as there are only seven specimens left in the wild, the IUCN is desperate to bring attention to them.

That's a pretty good reason to grow one. They need little watering and have the added bonus of flowering in deepest, darkest winter. I think I have the perfect spot in mind.

Camilla Phelps, Gardening Editor

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