With the below 0 temperatures rapidly encroaching on our city, its very obvious that your plants will not enjoy the skiff of snow and cold nights, they really do not appreciate the sweater weather like some of us do!
Bring your plants in if you haven't already! Whether you have just a few lovelies or a plethora, you will have to ensure they are placed away from drafty windows or a frequently opening door into an area with a sustained temperature to their personal liking.
HOW DO I KNOW? Well, if you're cold, they are cold! If you find the thermostat just isn’t cutting it for you in your home, suspect that your plants are feeling the same. If you are cold blooded, your plants will tell you rather quickly that they are in the path of a cool breeze. The leaves will change and their growth will slow or even stop (this is difficult to tell as your plants will already be entering their dormant stages for fall and winter)
WHAT COULD HAPPEN? If your greenies are in an environment that is not within their optimal temperature, most being 15-24 degrees Celsius but does vary in each, your plant will experience symptoms of cold related damage such as leaves curling over, turning brown and stunting growth. Add a cold environment with over-watering, and your plants are in risk of dying rapidly. Another risk factor of our Alberta winters is that they are our driest months of a calendar year, you have the forced air heating your home and probably don‘t have any room left in your bathroom for them all to get that humidity from your showers! These all take a toll on the plants that thrive on humidity. Your plants will show signs of wilting and insufficient moisture leading to a decrease in available leaf surface area to absorb further moisture and perform the important cycle of photosynthesis.
WHAT CAN I DO? As mentioned, when the colder days begin to set in and we predict a fall in temperature under our plants‘ tolerated low, we need to be proactive in moving them away from drafty or open windows and frequently opening door. Though some plants can withstand a sudden drop from 5-10 degrees, if a prolonged exposure is maintained, there is a high probability of plant damage or complete loss. Keep your plants in a well insulated room and add an additional heat source if needed such as a grow lamp or space heater on low. You will have to double your efforts in providing humidity to your plants as well, whether this be a humidifier with long run time through the day or putting down a tray filled with rocks and water, and increasing your misting schedule to every day, even twice a day.
Please be mindful when visiting plant stores throughout the cold months as well, we have so many tropical plants that love their warmth and we do our best to keep hem safe, but there are several near the doors so we don’t want them left open long! When our temperatures hit the negatives we will be sure wrap & bag your new plant babies to keep them cozy on their journey home. If you need to transport any plants for any reason like bringing them into the store for a re-pot or health assessment, be sure to cover them well & minimize cold exposure. Pro-tip! Do not keep your plants in your parked car for longer than 15-20 minutes as they will freeze.
Stay warm everyone!
Images - Cassidy Rae Photography