Ted Lart of Silver Spring, has submitted the following information in answer to a question about grafted cactus:
"Certain cactus nurseries are marketing grafted cactus under the names 'Moon Cactus' or 'Oriental Cactus.' These are no different from any other grafted cactus, other than the name. Those with a green cactus grafted on top can be rooted in the amnner described in the Indoor Gardener column. Those with the more exotic colors on top (rose, pink, orange, yellow etc.) cannot. These are mutations which have no chlorophly and cannot survive unless grafted on top of a green (chlorophyl-producing) cactus."
Mrs. David Eden, Bethesda, requests guidance on bringing houseplants back into the house after a summer outdoors. She asks also whether she can bring her hanging basket of Impatiens in to hang in her kitchen, and requests a suggestion on what to use around a Norfolk Island Pine that has lost lower branches.
A. A hanging basket of Impatiens can be brought indoors if you have a sunny place in front of a brightly lighted window. Flowering plants need high light intensity to bloom indoors. Fluorescent lights for 14 to 16 hours per day can substitute for sunlight. In either case, the plant may deteriorate upon being brought indoors because of the sudden change of light and reduction of humidity. A better practice is to take cuttings of Impatiens and carry small plants through the winter, providing good light to induce good green growth and bloom.
Boston Fern will make an effective filler in the container with Norfolk Island Pine.
Suggestions for bringing plants indoors after a summer in the garden or on the patio were given in the Indoor Gardener column on Sept. 29.
Dr. Henry Hopp, Bethesda, has requested names of sources of Sansevieria Hahni, Peperomia Obtusifolia and Peperomia "Watermelon."
A. Sansevieria Hahni is available at The Plant Pavilion, 3015 M St. NW, Washington; Silver Hahni and Golden Hahni are also sometimes available. The Plant Pavilion tries to keep a good stock of a number of Peperomias, including Watermelon.
Potomac Garden Center, Potomac, Md., has Sansevieria Hahni.
American Plant Food Co., River Road, Bethesda, has Peperomia Obtusifolia.
Dr. Sally MacDonald, Silver Spring, writes: "My jade plant has a scale - any suggestions? I will wash it with Ivory soap and water."
A. Pick off the scales with a sharp fingernail or with the tip of a nail file. The soapy water bath will further help to cleanse the plant.