In the colder months, many of us have to bring our plants inside. If you are new to house plants, or perhaps just moved north, you may not know how best to care for them. The needs of plants change with the seasons, so even year-round indoor plants will need a change in routine, perhaps even placement within the home. Just five simple tips can help keep your little green friends happy all winter long!

5 Ways To Care For Your House Plants In Winter

  • Placement: Keep plants away from drafts, quickly changing temperatures and from touching surfaces of extreme temperatures (i.e. icy windows or hot hearths).
  • Humidity: Dry winter air can be harsh on plants, indoor humidity should be between 30 to 40 percent. If you do not have a humidifier in your home, place your plants on trays of moist gravel, clustering them close together to increase humidity around plants. Misting only works temporarily, it isn’t an effective way to sufficiently increase humidity levels.
  • Light: Sunlight levels and path across the sky change during winter, be sure to choose the window that meets the needs of each plant. This may mean that year-round indoor plants may need to be moved to a sunnier window. Also, plants will grow toward the light source, turn them occasionally to prevent them from becoming leggy or misshapen. If you have blooming houseplants, consider supplementing natural light with fluorescent or grow lights to provide the longer hours needed for blooms.
  • Water: Plants aren’t actively growing in winter, so they require less water. In fact, overwatering is the reason why most houseplants die. Instead of watering on a regular schedule, try to meet the plant’s needs. If you’re not sure when to water, allow the upper 1 inch of soil to dry before watering again. You may even try watering in the sink and returning the plant after excess water has drained off.
  • Fertilizer: Wait till spring, when growth resumes.

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