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  Friday, December 19, 2014  
   
 

 
Healthy Plants

Help Your Plants Survive the Winter
Whether you’re tucking in your outdoor garden before frigid temperatures hit or counting on your indoor plants to satisfy your need for green this winter, you’ll need to do a bit of work to keep your leafy friends happy and healthy until spring.

Winter is generally a harsh time for plants -- indoors and out, but gardening experts say there are simple ways to bundle up outdoor plants and healthy ways to care for indoor plants so they’ll grow and bloom again for years to come.

Indoor Plants

  • Don’t fertilize or feed the plant unless they are growing vigorously or flowering. 
  • Reduce your watering schedule and let the soil dry out between waterings. 
  • Move plants into sunny areas during the day and away from cold drafts at night. 
  • Keep indoor temperatures as even as possible. Winter air is dry air and plants need humidity. Grouping plants together can help increase humidity as can placing pots on a tray of damp gravel or misting the leaves regularly.

Outdoor Plants

  • If plants are outdoors, in the ground, give them a layer of compost for food and add several layers of mulch to provide insulation and protection against the cold. Great options for mulch include shredded leaves, grass clippings, wood chips or newspaper.
  • Since our area of the country falls below freezing, don’t leave your stoneware pots outside for the winter, the soil in them can freeze and even empty pots can break. Pots do not provide insulation and, if left outside, the plants inside of them will likely die.
  • You can also leave the plants in their pots and move it to a cool, dark place that will stay between 40 and 50 degrees. Water once when you put them away then they’ll go dormant. Leave them until the spring when they’re ready to bask in the sun again.