This red Kalanchoe really pops by itself, so I chose a dusky pink Kalanchoe to combine with other baby succulents in a favorite pot.

In a recent blog, I passed along some expert tips for keeping your houseplants happy and healthy, based on a recent class offered by Marylee Pangman.

All fired up from her class, I somehow found myself driving to Green Things Nursery just up the road from Tucson Botanical Gardens, where the class was held.

When I arrived, I was greeted immediately with a cheery “Someone will be right with you.”

And indeed, the staff was quite helpful, especially Anna Lawrie, who has worked there on and off for about five years.

Once I had selected my plants — mostly old favorites — she gave me some additional tips for keeping them healthy this time around.

Mother-in-law’s tongue: Can tolerate low light. Treat it like a succulent and let it dry completely between waterings. Water once every two weeks.

Ivy: Can take full sun and can be outside in the winter. Also a good choice for outside in the shade. Heat is OK — it’s a tough plant. Works well as an understory plant.

Dracaena: Low light is OK but medium light is better. Don’t put it in a window facing west. Water once a week but let it dry out between waterings.

Dieffenbachia: Takes low light, water once a week. Don’t keep it too moist but don’t let it get bone dry, either.

Kalanchoe: This flowering succulent likes light and will do well outside in shade. Tip: After the blooms fade, trim that stem down just past the first set of leaves. That will help it rebloom.