6 Tips for Winter Houseplant Care

As it sets deeper into autumn and nearing the cold winter months we have been doing a little bit of house keeping with our indoor plants.  We thought we would share a few  tips on how to keep your house plants at their best through the cold months ahead. plant pots

1. Keep the label

Always jot down or keep the advise label your plant comes with as each plant will have it’s own needs and requirements for watering, lighting and feeding.

2. Water

Keeping your plants hydrated is important but during colder months many plants start to go into the dormant phase, so not needing as much water as they did in the summer.  However each plant has it’s own watering needs and this will vary depending on which room it’s in, the weather. and the humidity. For most house plants, reduce watering to once every fortnight. For succulents only water every two to three weeks, and for cacti some desert dwellers can be left un-watered from early November to the end of February especially if they are away from overly heated rooms. The exception is winter-flowering plants, such as Christmas cacti and poinsettias, which need watering whenever the compost feels dry. It’s important to allow your plants to rest over winter. If you continue to water and feed them as you do in summer, some plants cannot use it and the compost becomes excessively wet or encourage them to keep on growing, putting them under strain and leading to weak, spindly growth.

3. Light

For many plants the low, limited light is an indication for the plants to enter a dormant phase, in preparation for making it through the winter ahead. To help them, move your plants around the house to find lighter and sunnier spots but without moving them around too much as plant’s don’t appreciate changes in environment. Ideally nearly all houseplants should be kept out of direct light to avoid burning their leaves.

4. Cleaning

House plants can often become dusty, this reduces the amount of light that can reach the leaf surface, making it harder for them to create food. Those with large, smooth leaves can be cleaned by using a damp soft cloth to wash them, then use a dry cloth to remove all the moisture. Use a soft brush to dust plants with hairy leaves.

5. Keeping warm & cosy

Do not place plants in cold draughts, open windows or fluctuating temperatures, especially when in flower. If they’re on a windowsill, leave the curtains open if you can, as they trap cold air at night. Alternatively, move plants off the windowsill at night during cold spells. Also keep plants away from heat sources such as radiators and fireplaces, which can scorch delicate foliage and dry out the compost.

6. Look out for pests

If you have moved plants from the garden indoors, make sure you check them particularly well for pests, so you don’t introduce new pests, and remove any that you find. Keep inspecting all your plants regularly throughout the winter.