As the days get colder and shorter many of us turn our gardening attention indoors. Whether you are bringing in tender plants that cannot withstand the winter months outside or simply adding to your permanent indoor plant collection, we have tips to help you keep all your houseplants happy and healthy.
- Before bringing plants indoors, carefully inspect and wash them to ensure all tag-along bugs are left outside.
- If conditions are drastic between the house and garden, acclimate the plants slowly over a week or so.
- Group plants together, without plants touching—this increases humidity levels around the plants that may not like the dry nature of the home, especially when the home’s heating system is on.
- If plants still require more humidity, place pots in saucers that are a size or two larger than the pot. Fill saucers with rocks and water and place the potted plants on the rocks. The key is not to have the roots resting in water. The water in the stone-filled saucers will evaporate and add moisture to the air.
- Mist plants with smooth leaves. Never mist plants with fuzzy or hairy leaves!
- Avoid contact with the windows—in the winter windows can be very cold, and in the summer or on bright days the glass magnifying the sun’s light can damage leaves.
- Rotate plants to avoid the leaning plant syndrome, AKA phototropism.
- Water until excess water flows freely from the pots; this minimizes calcium and other mineral accumulation. Such mineral accumulation can harm plants.
- Use water that has sat out for a day or two; not only will this create room temperature water, but chlorine and other harmful chemical will dissipate from the water.
- Reduce watering when plants are not actively growing or blooming. The biggest threat to houseplants is overwatering!