Indoor plants, whether they have recently been brought in for the winter, or are kept indoors year round, require a different care routine than outdoor plants. There are some additional challenges to caring for indoor plants that you typically don't have to worry about, or at least not as much, when caring for outdoor plants. Below are some tips to make sure that your indoor plants are well cared and continue to thrive during the winter months.
Modify your watering routine.
This may not make much sense at first, but indoor plants do not need as much water during the winter. While winter air is certainly more dry than balmy summer air, plants enter a kind of stasis during the winter, making them go almost completely dormant. They generally need less water to stay hydrated and over-watering can actually cause to them rot.
Keep a humid environment.
If you care about your plants' health indoors, you will keep the environment as humid as possible for them. Low humidity is probably the biggest pitfall to indoor gardening and horticulture over the winter. Plants generally prefer an environment with about 50% humidity. If you own a humidifier, it is a good idea to keep plants near to the humidifier. If you do not have a humidifier, you need to find another way to raise the humidity, such as spritzing their leaves every so often, independent of your watering routine.
Keep the temperature regulated.
Plants, like human beings, are most comfortable in temperate environments, neither too hot or too cold (between 65-75 degree F). It is important to keep the nighttime temperature in your home above 50 degrees F. Keep plants away from cold drafts near windows, as well as artificial heat sources like radiators and fireplaces. Fluctuating temperatures can damage a plant, just as much as prolonged extreme temperatures.
Follow the sun.
There is not only less UV light in the winter, it also strikes at a lower angle. It is advisable to relocate your houseplants during the winter to areas of your home that will receive the best sunlight. An ideal spot would be a south or west facing window that receives substantial sunlight throughout most of the day.
Keep your plants’ diet regulated.
Since plants go dormant in the winter, they do not need to be fertilized. If you feed them during the winter, their natural cycle will be disrupted, so don't start adding fertilizer again until spring has sprung.
Keep your houseplants under the above conditions over the winter and there is absolutely no reason why they shouldn't remain healthy and be just as vibrant the following spring. Follow the above tips for caring for your houseplants during the winter and enjoy beautiful, healthy plants all year long.