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Tips for Winterizing Tropical Potted Plants

Depending on where you live late summer or early fall is the time of year to bring potted tropical plants indoors to protect them from cold weather. Use these guidelines to help prepare your potted tropical plants for winter.

Do Not Fertilize

Fertilizing plants in the fall, at least in most cases, is not a good idea. Plants should be fertilized for the last time at the end of summer and not fertilized again until the spring before they are moved back outside. A good rule of thumb is to fertilize plants the most during the warm and hot months but not before or after those months. Most plants grow slower during the cold months and some plants even growing all together so fertilizing them really isn’t necessary.

Location, Location, Location

Tropical plants expect warmth and exposure to light throughout the year. Tropicals enjoy the morning sun so if possible place them by an east facing window. If an east facing location isn’t available then place them by a south facing window. South facing windows offer an abundant amount of light and most tropical plants will do well in that location. If an east or south facing window isn’t available then try a west facing window.

Try to avoid using garages and basements. Most of them do not provide enough light and garages especially can be too cold. Any temperature below 55 degrees Fahrenheit can be damaging to a tropical plant.

Consider Grow Lights

Grow lights can provide much needed additional light for tropical plants. Using grow lights helps offset the amount of sunlight a plant needs and makes their location within your home less of an issue.

Keep in mind that even if in the best conditions a tropical plant still has a tendency to complain when it is brought inside during winter. Most plants will probably drop some leaves and you notice some yellowing of some of the remaining leaves. Remember not to over water them, keep the temperature warm and place them in a location where they will receive plenty of light and your tropical plants will survive the winter and be ready to move outside again in the spring.

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