I’m a full supporter of having house plants in your home. I believe these little pops of life throughout your space bring so many benefits. To name a few: they are air purifying, they are beautiful to look at, and caring for them can be grounding and reduce anxiety. On that note, also make sure to check out this post that walks you through healthy ways to cope with the winter blues. But that being said, plant care for winter looks different than it does in the other seasons, so your routine will need to shift along with it. Spring and summer are the growing months and during fall and winter, your plants will go dormant.
Here are five tips that will walk you through plant care for winter.
During the fall and the winter, your plants will not be doing nearly as much growing. This is completely normal. That being said, you should reduce the amount of fertilizer you are giving to your plants as it can actually harm them. Fertilizer is like extra food for your plants and they aren’t able to “digest” it as well when they aren’t doing much growing. During the winter, I use Plant Vitamins Thrive every month or two. If I happen to notice a plant putting out new growth during the colder months, I’ll use Plant Vitamins Boost to support that extra growth. Plant Vitamins has given me a code to share with my readers so if you plan to purchase, make sure to use “Debbie10” for 10% off your order.
Periodically, when your plants begin to show signs they have outgrown their pot, it may be time to transplant them into something larger. However, this task should happen in the spring or summer for the same reason as above, the dormancy that the colder months brings. Transplanting your plants is a bit rough on them and takes some time for them to settle in. Do not do this during the fall or winter if at all possible.
Plant Care For Winter Means Adjusting Your Watering Schedule
Plants require less water in the colder months. If you’re used to watering on a weekly basis, I’d recommend you switch to the touch-test instead. Stick your finger 1-3 inches into the soil (depending on the size of the pot) and check if the soil is damp. If it is, hold off on watering until it is dry. When it is dry, water your plants until it flows freely from the bottom of the drainage holes. I’ve found most of my plants require water every 1 ½ to 2 weeks through the winter (some even less than that).
Mist Regularly and Add a Humidifier to Your Home
Tropical plants in particular are used to living in damp locations where there is lots of humidity. The cold and dry months along with the heat being back on in your home can do a real number on your plants if you aren’t cognizant of that. A couple of great additions to your plant-care routine during this time would be to get a spray bottle and regularly mist your plants (tropicals especially – do not mist succulents as they dislike being damp). Another great option is to get a humidifier and have this running to put some moisture back into the air. I know I’ve noticed the edges of my plants getting a bit crispy in the winter and this is the primary reason for that.
Take Note of the Lighting in Your Home
As the seasons change, so does the lighting in your home. The sun comes through the windows in different ways and may be brighter (e.g. the tree in front of your home no longer has any leaves so the sun shines more directly) or you might notice there are more shadows in certain areas of your house. You may need to move some of your plants around in your home depending on if they need more or less light. Watch for signs they are not getting enough sunlight (browning, crispy or wilting leaves) or signs they are getting too much sunlight (yellow, drooping leaves). After moving your plants, give them a week or two to acclimate to their new spot.
I hope you find these tips helpful in keeping your plants happy and healthy!