With winter comes hot chocolate, movie nights and warm meals. Friday nights turn into warm snacks on the couch and Sunday mornings bring extra-long sleep-ins and one or two more cups of coffee. The seasonal change gives us an opportunity to slow down and get into a new (more-weather appropriate) routine. Just like you, your plants need a little change of routine, too. Here’s how caring for indoor plants in winter can help your greenery stay green and your leaves stay lush.
Our tips for caring for indoor plants in winter
Hydration is key, but watch your plants’ intake
Often, gardeners think that water can save any plant that looks a little droopy or brown, but in actuality overwatering is known to be the most common way of killing your indoor plants. Temperatures drop and sunlight decreases, meaning your house plants need a little less water than usual.
Test your soil by sticking your finger into the soil a couple of centimetres. If the soil sticks to your skin, take note that your plant’s roots aren’t thirsty and do not need any more water. If the soil is dry, then a few drops of water will do the trick. This is a good rule of (green) thumb with most common household plants, with the exception of ferns which enjoy growing in damp soil.
Once watered, before placing your pot back into its saucer or cover pot, be sure the water has drained out the bottom completely. An overwatered plant is more likely to die than an underwatered one.
African violets, begonias and cyclamen are some of the potted beauties which need to be watered from the bottom instead of gulping water from the top. Bottom watering can help prevent and avoid root rot. Fill up the saucer to do so.
Light the way to growth
Longer nights and shorter days, more clouds and less sun, these are all winter weather changes that we can expect. The diminishing light levels can affect caring for indoor plants in winter. To boost your plant babies’ health, move them closer to a window but keep them out of direct contact with the sun’s rays. Give the windows a wash if they’re looking a tad misty and let in that light!
While you’re spending some more time indoors, a good way to keep yourself busy and give leaves a little love is to wipe the dust from them. A clean leaf can allow more energy and light to be absorbed.
Repot in summer
Plants prefer repotting to happen in the warmer months, and we are sure you would prefer that as well. So, resist the temptation to repot your indoor plants in winter unless they urgently need to be moved. Cuttings can also hurt your roots more than help them during winter. Roots will grow incredibly slow in the colder season, making them prone to root rot.
Food for thought
Caring for your indoor plants in winter can mean feeding them. Unlike outdoor gardens where plants can send new roots down into the soil in search of food, an indoor plant is limited to nutrients inside of its pot. As plants age and grow, they will need additional feeding as the available food will have been consumed. If your plants need a feed, use Wondersol All-Purpose liquid plant food every two weeks or Wonder Plant Food Stix.
Wonder Plant Food Stix eliminate the need for measuring and mixing, so they are perfect for those plant parents strapped for time or new to feeding indoor plants. Another perfect time to give this feeding method a go is if you’ve noticed signs of new growth in your indoor plants.
How does it work?
- Select the required amount of stix for your pot size.
- Push the stix into the soil and leave to absorb.
- Ta-da! You’ve served your plant eight weeks’ worth of nutritious meals.
It’s getting cold in here…
Drops in temperature can cause diseases, such as powdery mildew or dollar spots, to appear on your beloved leafy house plants. Water only in the mornings to allow your plants to dry out during the day and apply Efekto Funginex to control any unwanted fungus.
Plants love pest-free living
There are some common culprits when it comes to indoor plants. Our easy and effective solution to keep your plants pest-free is the Efekto Garden Gun, an easy-to-use trigger pack that does not require mixing or measuring, altogether avoiding making a mess.
Caring for indoor plants in winter summed up
Winter gardening can seem daunting to first-time plant owners or even gardeners that are used to outdoor planting, but with a few adjustments to your gardening routine, your plants can continue to thrive in winter.