As we move into winter, a time of deep rest and slow down of time, our plants become dormant and suspend growth. How we care for them during this time will help ensure they will be strong and grow in spring.
This is a three part series as we dive into Winter Plant Care. This is our third part in the series and we are talking about Heat & Humidity. Be sure to check out our previous post regarding Light & Sun.
As temperatures outside drop, and extra blankets are pulled out, don’t forget about keeping your houseplants warm as well. Most houseplants are tropical and many cannot tolerate temperatures below 65F degrees. For many, temperatures below 50F will cause plants to become distressed.
When you’re adjusting the thermostats in your home, take time to ensure your plants are warm as well. Below are some tips to protect your houseplants from the cold.
- If plants are placed by windows that frost overnight, make sure to move them away from the windows in the evening.
- Avoid placing plants near drafty areas or heat sources like radiators, which can dehydrate them quickly.
- If space is limited on where to relocate your plants, consider giving them their own jackets by wrapping their pots with bubble wrap or towels to help keep them insulated.
Low humidity levels in the cold months aren’t just a problem for us, but a problem for our house plants. Most house plants are tropical and prefer humidity levels around 50-60%. During winters, humidity levels in heated homes drop to 10 to 20%.
As we crank up the thermostats, we also dry out the air in our home causing houseplants to become dry and distressed.
Below are some tips on how to add more moisture in the air for your plants:
- Cluster your plants together. Plants naturally release moisture through their leaves, and by grouping them, they can create humidity for each other.
- Make a pebble tray. Fill a shallow dish or tray with pebbles and add water, making sure that the tops of the pebbles stick out slightly above the level of the water. Place your potted plants on your pebble tray. As the water evaporates into the air, your plant will get the humidity and moisture it needs.
- Use a humidifier. By keeping a humidifier going daily, your plants will have a constant stream of moisture.