When To Bring Houseplants In For The Winter

It’s time to bring your indoor plants inside for the winter once the overnight lows begin to fall below 50 degrees. Here are 5 simple steps for achievement:

Decide where your indoor houseplants will reside in step one. Invest in a grow light if your area does not receive enough sunshine. A saucer is also necessary to shield surfaces from moisture. You can buy grow lights and saucers in-store from our wide variety.

STEP 2: For 1-2 weeks, relocate your plant outside to a less sunny spot before bringing it inside. This allows it to adjust to the lower light levels it will experience indoors.

Step three is to properly spray your plant with insecticidal soap a week before bringing it inside. Make sure to spray each leaf from top to bottom.

STEP 4: To get rid of any pests that might be hiding in the soil, saturate it with insecticidal soap the day before you bring the plant indoors. Also re-spray the leaves.

STEP 5: Bring the plant inside to its new location for the winter after leaving it outside to dry for a few hours.

You may enjoy your plants every day of the year by bringing your favorite tropicals and houseplants indoors during the winter. Try it out; if you have any questions, let us know.

At what temperature should I move my plants?

Depending on the type of plant, you should decide when to bring it inside. However, it’s important to keep in mind that many common flowering container plants (such as begonias and hibiscus) are truly tropical natives and dislike chilly nights. A chill can significantly slow down an organism’s growth, even if it doesn’t kill them.

When nighttime temperatures begin to fall below 55 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit, it is preferable to bring indoor plants (12-15 C.). Look for pests that may be hiding in the soil of container plants before bringing them indoors. For 15 minutes, immerse each pot in warm water to force any insects or slugs to the surface. If you notice a lot of activity, spray your plant with an insecticide and repot it.

This is also an excellent time to repot any of your plants that are outgrowing their containers.

The plants that require the most light should be placed in windows that face south or under grow lights when you bring them inside. Plants that require less light can be placed in windows that face east or west. The light will probably be dimmer than it was outdoors no matter where they go. This shock may cause some leaves to turn yellow and fall. But after it adjusts to the new light level, your plant ought to produce fresh, wholesome leaves.

Water your plants less frequently than you did when they were outdoors so that less of it evaporates. On the other hand, the air inside your home is probably less humid. This issue should be resolved by setting your pot on a dish on a layer of gravel that is maintained consistently moist. Simply watch out that the water level in the gravel doesn’t rise above the level of the container or you run the risk of root rot.

How cold should it be for indoor plants?

The easiest time of year to kill a houseplant is definitely during the winter. Houseplants are put to the test by harsh growing conditions like low light levels, dry air, shorter days, and frigid temperatures.

Making care routine adjustments to accommodate seasonal growing circumstances is the key to ensuring that plants survive the winter. Review the fundamentals to provide your indoor plants with the best care during winter.

Winter causes the sun to set later in the day, which results in a 50% reduction in light levels near windows. During the winter, indoor plants that thrive near a sunny eastern or northern window during the summer may require a southern or western exposure. Similarly, plants near windows in the west or south that require filtered light in the summer might be able to endure direct sunlight in the winter.

To aid plants in adjusting to shifting light conditions:

  • If it’s possible, move plants nearer to the windows.
  • Window cleaning will maximize light transmission.
  • For the winter, move plants to new areas next to windows with more light.
  • Cleanse plants to allow leaves to utilize the light that is available to the fullest.
  • Add synthetic lighting. Fluorescent lights are sufficient. They generate less heat and are less expensive than conventional grow lights. For best results, place bulbs 4–12 inches away from plants.

Tropical plants, which make up the majority of indoor plants, like daytime temperatures of 65 to 75 F and nighttime temperatures of around 10 F lower. Low temperatures (below 50F) can be problematic for many plants.

In order to make the thermostats more comfortable for you, keep in mind that your plants also require some thought.

  • Keep plants away from heat sources and cold gusts.
  • Maintain a few inches of space between plants and external windows.
  • Plants should be moved away from windows at nightfall in cold climates if windows freeze over at night. Additionally, you may tuck a thick shade or another insulating item between the plants and the glass.

In the cold, homes might only provide 5–10% relative humidity. Houseplants prefer 40–50%. Brown leaf tips and the presence of pests like Spider Mites are indicators that plants are being stressed by low humidity. Learn how to increase the humidity around plants in simple methods.

Overwatering is the most frequent issue that indoor plants encounter throughout the winter. 95% of indoor plants require the soil to almost totally dry out before watering. How do you determine whether plants need water?

  • Don’t only test a small area of the soil’s surface. When the root zone is dry, plants require moisture. Insert your finger up to two inches into the ground. Water the soil if it’s dry.
  • Pick up the pot. When soil gets dry, it becomes lighter. Lift pots right away after watering to feel the texture of the moist soil.
  • Plants won’t need water as frequently if winterized rooms are humidified. Water must be added to dry air.
  • The only exceptions to this rule are citrus and ferns in pots, both of which require continually moist soil. If you are uncertain, always do your research.

Never let plants sit in water that gathers in the drainage saucer overnight when you water.

Fertilize plants all winter long in mild climates. Winter fertilization of indoor plants is not recommended in the coldest climates with little natural light. When springtime outside plants begin to grow, fertilizer can be resumed.

In the spring and summer, when most indoor plants are actively growing, is the ideal time to repot them. Potted woody plants that entirely hibernate in the winter are the exception. Transplant those in the early spring before the buds break.

  • Numerous advantages of houseplants include bettering indoor air quality and lowering sickness rates.

How may indoor plants be brought indoors for the winter?

Some frequently asked questions about preparing your plants and containers to bring inside for the winter are answered by Laura from Garden Answer. She outlines her step-by-step guidelines for maintaining healthy, happy plants even while they are housed indoors.

Gather the items you want to save by walking about your garden. Consider your garden’s perennials, herbs, and succulents. With a little assistance, even window boxes, displays, and smaller pots may survive indoors.

Consider the containers they are in right now once you’ve gathered everything you wish to bring inside. Do they function inside your house? Will you remove something that requires a new container from your garden? You can obtain the necessary supplies by asking yourself these questions.

Having a single defined workspace makes things simpler. You won’t be able to move your materials throughout your garden and the mess will stay in one place.

A trowel, a shovel, snips, pruners, gloves, and containers are a some of the tools you might require. If the containers have been used before, be sure to sanitize them using a solution of 1 part bleach to 10 parts water to get rid of any hidden insects or infections. The proper type of soil will be your last requirement. African violets, orchids, succulents, cacti, and common houseplants all require different types of soil to grow successfully.

Make any esthetic cuts or prune any lanky branches. Trim any dead leaves and spent blossoms as well because that is how insects and diseases enter buildings.

Avoid bringing insects inside your house if possible. Make sure to inspect the soil’s surface as well as the tops and undersides of the leaves. Everything that is scurrying around inside ought to remain outside. This will ensure that later on no other indoor plants get the infection.

If you’re not repotting, equally remove the top inch or two of soil—whatever will come up without much effort—and replace it with brand-new dirt. This will assist in removing any bug eggs from the soil.

Repotting any containers now is a good idea if you want to complement your interior design or if they need to be larger. Additionally, this is the time to plant everything you have taken out of the garden. Use the proper soil for your plants, always. There is soil at Espoma for many kinds of plants.

Although it is not necessary to perform this before bringing your plants indoors, it is highly advised. Give your plants a good sip of water while they can still drain outside. It will aid in establishing them in their new containers and let the newly added top soil to release its nutrients.

Consider how much light each of these plants requires, then position them accordingly. Find a window with bright light that they will love residing in for a few months if they prefer full light. For the best chance of catching any spills, it is recommended to set a saucer beneath each of the pots.

When should I bring my indoor plants inside from the outdoors?

Your plants enjoy the warm temperatures and sunny days of summer just as much as you do! The Grow-HowTM Team provides all the information you need in regards to bringing your indoor plants outside throughout the summer.

Can all plants go outside?

Yes, during the hot summer months, all of our interior foliage plants can be moved outside. After all, there is where plants originated! They will appreciate breathing in the crisp outdoor air. When putting your plants outside, one of the most important things to consider is the strength of the outdoor sunshine.

Many typical houseplants thrive in bright, indirect light that is filtered by the canopy of taller trees above as they do in their natural habitat along the forest floor. You should avoid placing your plant in regions that receive direct sunlight if the plant you have indoors prefers indirect light. Additionally, it’s crucial to get your plant used to being outdoors.

How do I acclimate a plant to the outdoors?

The process of progressively acclimating your plant to a new environment, such as a change in temperature or light intensity, is known as acclimation. In order to avoid undue stress that can hinder growth or harm the plant, proper acclimation enables your plant to gradually adapt to its new environment.

Start acclimating your plant by putting it in a shaded place outside for an hour or two on the first day, and then gradually increase the amount of time it spends outside over the following seven to ten days. Most plants can tolerate direct sunlight during the morning hours since it is significantly less intense. About five days after you begin the acclimatization process, if your plant will receive morning sun, start putting it in the sun for brief periods of time each morning. It is better if plants with a preference for indirect light are protected from the sun by around 10 a.m.

Even plants that can tolerate direct sunshine, like a Bird of Paradise, Sansevieria, Ponytail Palm, and most cacti, need to be introduced gradually over the course of at least 10 days. This will prevent them from experiencing burnt leaves while they adjust to the strength of the full outdoor sun.

When do I know it’s safe to bring my plant outside?

When the outside temperature remains consistently above 50F, you can bring your plants outside without risk. Pay close attention to the forecast. Bring your plants inside for the night if the temperature is forecast to drop below 50F. When it becomes warmer, put them back outside.

They’ll probably be fine if you forget and expose them to lower temperatures for a brief time. Their growth may be temporarily stunted by temperatures below 50F, and leaf damage may result from temps as low as 35F. Most indoor plants will lose all of their leaves in freezing conditions, but if the exposure was only brief, the roots will usually survive.

What should plants be sprayed with before being brought inside for the winter?

Remember that even if you take all the necessary precautions to debug and clean your houseplants before bringing them inside, you may still experience plant insect issues.

Mealybugs are particularly difficult to catch because they may survive for several months without a host plant and conceal themselves in teeny-tiny fissures.

You might thus treat the infected plant with a Neem oil solution, a pre-mixed organic horticultural oil, or a hot pepper wax spray if you discover any plant bugs after moving houseplants inside for the winter.

Yellow houseplant adhesive stakes are non-toxic and effective against flying insects like soil gnats and white flies.

These natural remedies for killing plant bugs are what I advise because they are more effective than synthetic ones.

Additionally, I’m sure you don’t want to apply pesticides that are hazardous inside your home. Read about my natural pest control home remedies for houseplants to find out more.

What are potted plants used for during the winter?

You might need to give your pots additional protection depending on where you reside. The following are a few choices for overwintering containers:

  • Put many pots next to the house or wall on the ground. Put the cold-hardiest plants outside the grouping, and the weaker ones in the middle. Place straw bales around the outside. Putting them together improves the insulation’s mass and volume, shielding them from chilly breezes that could cause freezing and desiccation.
  • Mulch pots with straw, mulch, or chopped leaves for further insulation. Snow is a wonderful insulator as well. Grouping pots in a premade pond liner and filling it with mulch is an intriguing concept for insulating containers.
  • The only insulation for roots is the wall of the pot itself because the majority of roots usually tend to be on the exterior of the rootball. To insulate roots, place foam along the walls of square pots that is at least an inch thick before planting. Fill the internal walls of rounded pots with foam peanuts.
  • Fill the container up with soil and bury the pots there.
  • Plant the rootball in the ground after removing it from the container. Clean the container, then keep it inside. Next year, remove the root ball and repot it in the same or a bigger container.
  • Burlap, bubble wrap, old blankets, or geotextile blankets can all be used to wrap pots. Since the roots require protection, the entire plant doesn’t need to be covered. The root zone will retain heat thanks to the support of these protective covers.
  • Cover plants at night with cloth, burlap, or plastic if low temperatures are anticipated. If you use plastic, make sure to take it off during the day because the heat can hasten the growth of the buds. Additionally, when covering, take care not to harm the plants’ tops. Plant damage from the cold and pests is facilitated by injury.
  • To offer further security, place your pot inside of a larger pot. The bigger pot should have extra insulation or sturdy walls for this to work optimally.

Hard freezes may be unusual to nonexistent in USDA Zones 7 through 11, therefore it may not be essential to add insulation or move pots indoors for the winter. There are several tasks, nevertheless, that you should still be mindful of. Plant development will stall in the winter because of the lower temperatures, and watering may become less regular. However, salt can accumulate in the soil and increase toxicity levels. Leach the salts out with water. As required, fertilize plants as well.