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How to Take Care of Your Plants During Winter

Our plants are very important to us. They not only serve as a lovely interior decoration, but they also freshen and filter the air in our residences. The winter season is a time for most indoor plants to hibernate. However, it does not mean that they don't need additional care. There are some indoor plants that can withstand the cold of winter while many others will succumb to the harsh conditions. This article provides indoor plant care tips for wintertime so you can enjoy these beautiful green companions all year long!

plants in winter

Be prepared

The indoor plants that can withstand winter are the ones with thick and sturdy leaves, such as palms or ficus. These indoor plants have a high tolerance for cold weather. If you're unsure of what kind of indoor plant to get to keep indoors during wintertime, look for one that has broad or waxy leaves because these will be able to handle more abuse from freezing temperatures than thin-leaved varieties will.

When bringing your plants inside during colder months, make sure they go in well before frost sets in so they don't get hit with an extreme temperature change too quickly; this could lead them to develop some brown leaf edges and other damage if it's drastic enough.

Reduce watering

Water your plants well before bringing them inside so they can slowly adjust to indoor conditions. You'll need less water as the winter goes on, but make sure not to let the indoor soil dry out completely or your houseplants will suffer from dehydration.

Your plants may also require a little more fertiliser during colder months because of lower natural light levels and possible nutrient leaching in rainy weather; this is especially true for any indoor plants you have that are getting their nutrients mostly through sap flow rather than photosynthesis during the warmer seasons when leaves are present.

Keep them warm

Avoid cold winter drafts by placing indoor plants near windows with plenty of curtains around them and bring your potted indoor plants closer to heat sources like fireplaces or radiators if necessary, and decrease watering frequency just slightly.

Repot your indoor plants if necessary so that they are healthier and better suited to the indoor environment. Do not overwater indoor plants because winter is a time of dormancy and water retention in roots thus slows down or ceases altogether.

Give them plenty of light

In the winter, plants require more light than before so you'll need to rotate your pots more frequently to ensure that each plant gets the sunshine it needs. If natural light is insufficient, use a big lightbulb in a typical table lamp to provide light for your houseplants for around 12-14 hours every day. Otherwise, just make sure to put your plants in a spot where they'll get lots of sunlight.

Humidity

Keep in mind that if you have the heater on a lot during winter, you might need to add a humidifier to keep the humidity levels in check so your plants don't dry out. To add moisture to the air, build a humidity tray for houseplants. Pour a shallow layer of stones into a low-sided dish. Fill the pebbles halfway with water. Place the tray in a bright, sunny area with the plant pots on rocks. Alternatively, a desktop humidifier can be used to provide moist air to plants.

Most plants require 50 to 60 percent of humidity levels, but it can fall as low as 35 percent in a home. In a situation like that, it's recommended to make them a small greenhouse by tenting them using a large plastic bag.  Alternatively, fill a shallow dish halfway with water and pebbles, then set your plant pot inside.  Moisture will form across the plants as the water evaporates.

In Summary:

Winter for your indoor plants shouldn't be an issue if you follow these simple steps:

  • Avoid drafts by placing indoor plants near windows with plenty of curtains around them
  • Bring your potted indoor plants closer to heat sources like fireplaces or radiators if necessary
  • Repot your indoor plants if necessary so that they are healthier and better suited to the indoor environment
  • Do not overwater indoor plants because winter is a time of dormancy, when water retention in roots slows down or ceases altogether.
  • Place houseplants on your second floor for best light conditions possible

Australian winters are quite forgiving compared to other countries (luckily!) so most plants will do okay indoors. If you follow these guidelines, your plants will look absolutely stunning in no time, and they will be prepared for a good period of major growth in Spring.

Have any suggestions for keeping houseplants alive during the winter? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.

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