How to get your plants ready for Winter…

A dreaded time for most plant parents. After a sunny few months of fabulous growth, most plants growth rates slow way down. There’s a few things you’ll need to adjust in your home/office/home office. Here are some of our top tips for keeping your house plants healthy throughout the Winter.

Light

Introduce your plants to little bit more sunlight, but be careful to avoid draughty windows and plants touching the cold glass. Brrr.

If your home gets pretty dark during Autumn/Winter, think about investing in a wee LED grow light. They’re usually available on eBay, Groupon etc.

Water

Reduce watering!! The dark days mean your plants will need a lot less water. A general rule is watering tropical plants roughly once every 2 weeks and desert plants almost only once a month! Always check deep into the soil before watering as all plants and their (your) homes are unique.

Don’t use cold water on your plants. How would you like it? Room temp. for those babies!

Try to avoid placing plants close to radiators as the heat & dry air can shock the plants. Consider occasionally misting your plants to increase the humidity in the room or purchasing a humidifier to really amp up the tropical vibes during the cold, dark, dreary Winter.

If misting, try not to leave too many water droplets on the leaves as this can leave marks.

Check for pests and clean leaves regularly. With windows being shut more often, the dust can really build up on those leaves! Keeping foliage clean helps your plants photosynthesise (soak up that sunshine).

Hold back on the fertiliser and repotting until the Spring if you can. Consider this a period of rest for your plants and you!

Dormancy

All plants go through a period of rest in the Winter, called dormancy. Plants tend to experience a slower growth and some plants even drop all their leaves (try not to panic).

Your dormant plant may look dead, but if the roots are healthy it will grow again in the Spring. Keep it in a shady spot, watering no more than once a month. As Spring arrives and your plant begins to grow, gradually move your plant close to the sunlight (always indirect), whilst increasing watering. This process can take a few weeks but it’s so worth it for those beautiful plants that can go dormant!

Here’s a couple of examples that have a reputation of going fully dormant, dropping all of their leaves;

Alocasia

Caladium

Don’t be disheartened if you lose a couple of plants. Plant Parenthood is a journey of trial and error. Also – more space for new plants! Silver lining and that.

Most plants don’t require much care during the Winter so if you’re a serial over-waterer, it’s time to practise a little bit of neglect. Hold back on the water, avoid the cold, draughts & radiators and BOOST THAT HUMIDITY, HONEY!!

If you have any questions or need some advice with a sad looking plant, please get in touch. We hope this helps!

Botany plants lately? Time to figure out how to water these succas.

Your plants don’t grow on a schedule, so they don’t need watered on a schedule. Each plants needs vary depending on type, size, potting mix and location.

Plants in larger pots dry out more slowly than plants in smaller pots. Plants in bright light dry out more quickly than plants in low light.

Don’t forget as the seasons change, you’ll most likely have to feng shui a few of your botanical beauties to adjust their light exposure (or make room for more plants!).

Desert-natives like cacti and succulents like to stay pretty dry and can withstand periods of drought. When you water your desert plants, feel free to give them a good soak, then leave to dry out completely before watering again. Humidity-loving, tropical plants like Ferns and Calatheas often need a good watering once or twice a week.

Thirsty plant signs to look out for:

  • Leaves will shrivel or the edges will curl.
  • Leaves will lose vibrancy and turn light yellow.
  • You’ll eventually get used to the feel of the plant – when the pot feels light, it’s probably time for a water.
  • Lack of growth in the growing season.
  • Soil feels dry and compact.

Best way to tell (for most plants): Pop your finger in the soil, if the top 2 inches (usually up to your first knuckle) is dry, it’s time to hydrate. If it still feels a little moist, it’s best to give it another couple of days.

Watering from the bottom is one of the best tips we can share, especially for overwatering plant parents (no judgement here). Check the bottom of your plastic grow pot to see if there’s any visible roots – this method doesn’t work too well if there’s no roots aren’t long enough yet. If there’s roots, you’re good to go.

Place your plant in a shallow bowl of room temperature water for 15/20 mins, letting the plant’s root system drink up all the water it needs through the drainage holes. Make sure to let the plant drip out any excess water before placing back in decorative pot. Leaving plants sitting in puddles of water can lead to root rot.  

It’s still good to water plants from the top too, try switching it up every now and then. It’s a good way to fully hydrate the entire root system, as long as your letting the top 2 inches of soil dry before watering again. Having super moist top soil can attract fungus gnats – the bane of any plant parents’ life.

Houseplants can often be a bit fussy with regular auld tap water. Try leaving water out overnight – this lets any chlorine dissipate and you’ve got some room temperature water ready to go for the next day. Your plants will feel happy and hydrated!

We hope you’ve found some of our tips & tricks helpful and we wish you all the plant growth!