5 Tips to Keep Your Plants Alive This Winter

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During the winter months, your house plants may go into a dormant phase due to the decreasing light levels. Caring for your plants correctly during this time is crucial to avoid problems that can affect their health come spring. Proper watering techniques are especially important in the autumn and winter, as overwatering can lead to root rot and eventual plant death.

To ensure your plants receive the right amount of water, it’s important to check the soil before watering. Stick your finger two inches deep into the soil and if it feels wet, wait a few days before watering. Overwatering can result in yellowing leaves, brown tips, and leaf drop. If you do overwater your plant, the remedy is to remove the wet soil, inspect the roots, cut away any black roots, and repot the plant with fresh soil.

In addition to proper watering, it’s important to consider light requirements, especially for tropical plants that require consistent light, warmth, and humidity. During the winter, the days are shorter and the light weaker, which can lead to fussy plants.

To help boost growth, consider using grow lights to supplement natural light. Cleaning and inspecting your plants regularly can also help prevent issues such as pests, disease, and fungal infections. Finally, be mindful of temperature considerations, keeping indoor temperatures at a minimum of 10 degrees Celsius and avoiding rapid temperature changes that can harm your plants.

Key Takeaways

  • Proper watering techniques are crucial for happy house plants, especially in the autumn and winter.
  • Light requirements, including the use of grow lights, are important to consider for tropical plants during the winter months.
  • Regular cleaning and inspection can help prevent issues such as pests, disease, and fungal infections.
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Understanding Plant Dormancy

During the winter, the decreasing light levels are cues for house plants to enter a dormant phase. It’s important to care for your plants correctly to allow them to do this. Continuing to care for your plant in the winter as you do in the summer will lead to various problems for your plants that will not set them up well for next spring.

Watering Techniques and Frequency

Proper watering techniques are crucial to ensure that your houseplants stay healthy and happy. This is especially important during the autumn and winter months when the risk of overwatering your plants is much higher. While plants dry out much quicker in the summer, they can suffer from overwatering in the winter if you continue to water them as frequently as you do in the summer.

To avoid overwatering your plants, you should adjust your watering schedule based on the season. For example, you may water your regular houseplants, such as Philadelphia engines, Ficus plants, and tradiscansias, once a week during the spring and summer. However, you should dial this back to once every two or three weeks in the winter. Similarly, you may water your succulents once every two or three weeks in the summer, but only once a month or longer during the winter.

It’s important to never water your plants without checking the soil first. Stick your finger two inches deep into the soil of the plant, and if it feels wet, leave it for a few days and check again. You want the soil to feel dry before watering. You can also use a moisture meter to check the level of moisture in the soil, which is a real game changer for plant care.

Overwatering your plants can lead to issues such as yellowing leaves, brown tips on the leaves, and leaf drop. This is because the roots are pushing too much moisture to the leaves, and the leaf cells are bursting, resulting in damaged leaf tissue. To remedy an overwatered plant in the winter, take the plant out of the pot, remove the wet soil, inspect the roots, and cut away any that look black. Then, repot the plant into some fresh soil, and it should bounce back.

As the days get shorter and the light weaker in the winter, it can be problematic for your tropical plants in your home. The majority of indoor plants hail from the forest floor of the tropical rainforest, where they get consistent light, warmth, and humidity all year round. Keeping your plants indoors during the harsh winter protects them from the harsh temperatures, but the change in light can lead to fussy plants. This is where you may want to move a few of your fussier plants closer to the window.

One great hack to boost the growth of your houseplants over the winter is to use grow lights to supplement the light from the sun. Grow lights are a fantastic resource for plant parents because they do an excellent job of replicating the light from our sun that plants can use for growth. However, it’s important to use grow lights that have been specifically designed for plants to maximize the light spectrum that plants use for photosynthesis.

In conclusion, proper watering techniques and frequency are crucial for the health and happiness of your houseplants. Adjust your watering schedule based on the season, and always check the soil before watering. Use grow lights to supplement the light from the sun, and keep your plants away from cold drafts and rapid changes in temperature. By following these tips, your houseplants will thrive all year round.

Light Requirements in Winter

During winter, the light levels decrease, which signals to house plants to enter a dormant phase. It is crucial to care for your plants correctly during this time to allow them to do so. Continuing to care for your plant in the winter as you do in the summer will lead to various problems for your plants that will not set them up well for next spring.

The days get shorter, and the light weaker in the winter, and this can be problematic for your tropical plants in your home. The majority of your indoor plants hail from the forest floor of the tropical rainforest, where they get consistent light, warmth, and humidity all year round. Keeping our plants indoors during the harsh winter protects them from the harsh temperatures, but the change in light can lead to fussy plants.

This is where you may want to move a few of your fussier plants closer to the window. Ficus plants really appreciate being in as bright a spot in your home as possible during the winter. Using grow lights to supplement the light from the sun is also a fantastic resource for plant parents because they do an excellent job of replicating the light from our sun that plants can use for growth.

Grow lights have been specifically designed for plants to maximize this light and are suitable. It is best not to stick any old LED into a lamp and shine them over your plants, expecting them to grow like mad. This won’t work, as normal LEDs don’t have enough of the red, blue, and green spectrum light that plants use for photosynthesis.

Plants are sensitive souls, and they naturally live in consistently warm climates in the tropics. This means that a slight large temperature fluctuation can be problematic in the winter in colder climates. It’s best to keep indoor temperatures at a minimum of 10 degrees Celsius and 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you’re going away for an extended period of time in the winter, try and set the minimum temperature on your thermostat so that your plants don’t freeze while you’re gone.

If you can keep your plants away from cold drafts from doors and windows, do so. If you keep your plant next to an open window in the bathroom, then you may want to consider moving it so it doesn’t get regular drops in temperature. If you live in a cold climate, then you’ll no doubt have the central heating on, but be mindful of where your plants are located.

Often radiators are located underneath windows, and windowsills are prime locations for plants. When the central heating goes on, move your plants away from that space. This will only create rapid changes in temperature that the plant will hate, and they’ll also lower the humidity for those plants, and they really won’t be happy.

Plant Cleaning and Inspection

It is important to keep your plants clean and tidy, especially in the winter. Plants with a thick layer of dust on the leaves will inhibit the plant’s ability to access sunlight and photosynthesize. A buildup of dust on the leaves will also block the pores of the plant, making the plant more susceptible to disease and fungal infections.

Plants are sensitive souls and naturally live in consistently warm climates in the tropics. This means that slight large temperature fluctuations can be problematic in the winter. It’s best to keep indoor temperatures at a minimum of 10 degrees Celsius and 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you’re going away for an extended period of time in the winter, try to set the minimum temperature on your thermostat so that your plants don’t freeze while you’re gone.

Temperature Considerations

Be mindful of where your plants are located. Often radiators are located underneath windows, and windowsills are prime locations for plants. When the central heating goes on, you want to move your plants away from that space. This will only create rapid changes in temperature that the plant will hate, and they’ll also lower the humidity for those plants, and they really won’t be happy.

Pest Control

Autumn is the ideal time to check for pests rigorously and treat your plants if you have a problem. Spider mites love dry, warm conditions, and that matches perfectly with homes in the winter with that lovely central heating on. Spider mites are tiny arachnids that grow massive colonies.