WINTER INDOOR PLANT CARE
With winter around the corner here in the southern hemisphere, thoughts of hibernation linger while I turn my clock back exactly 1 hour, marking the start to shorter days and freezing cold mornings.
Its not only us humans who suffer through the winter months, our plant babies do too. Less light and colder temperatures trigger plants to go into a dormancy phase (or hibernation if you will), slowing their growth rate right down. So taking into consideration this environmental change, we need to adjust their care slightly to ensure the survival of our indoor plant babies.
- Water - It seems contradictory, but plants grow slower in winter due to less light, they don’t need so much water because they are not working as hard as they do in the warmer months. Remember to use water around the same temperature as the air so that you don’t shock their roots - we don’t like cold showers, neither do indoor plants. *quick tip for indoor fern mama’s - the ferns soil will need to be constantly moist to survive through the colder months, just don’t over do it*.
- Light - Make sure your plant babies are getting enough light, even if you have to move them closer to bright windows. If you see the plant leaning towards the light source, rotate it every so often to encourage and assist in vertical growth. You also don’t want to have the leaves of your indoor plant touching icy windows, so finding the perfect winter spot can be a fine balancing act. And make sure leaves are dust free to maximise the photosynthesis process.
- Fertiliser - Because your plants are growing at a much slower pace in winter, there is no need to fertilise. Resume fertiliser care in Spring, when you see signs of new growth. Spring is also the time to take cuttings, and repot if need be.
- Temperature - Keep your indoor plant babies away from draughts, be that a cold one from an open window or a warm one from a heat pump, heater or fireplace. Drastic changes in temperature can kill your plant babies and so will temperatures below 10C. Keep the room comfortably stable with temperatures between 18C and 25C.
Consider this “off-season” as a time of rest for your indoor plant babies and enjoy them in their sleepy mood. And keep in mind, if you are cold, your indoor plants are most likely cold too!