If you are like most gardeners, you love spring and summer because of the wonderful array of flowers and greenery that seem to be on display everywhere you look. Fortunately, you don’t have to give up your beautiful blooms when the weather gets colder as there are plenty of winter flowers for indoors.
Here are just a few of the flowering plants you can successfully grow indoors during the winter season. Most are easy to care for if you provide them with the right environment and follow instructions for watering.
Winter Flowers for Indoors
African violets have been a favorite winter flowering houseplant for generations of plant lovers. They’re available in an array of flower colors in shades of purple, white, and pink, and the flower forms can be single, double, or even ruffled. These plants are small enough to fit into a pot that is only about five or six inches in diameter and fit nicely on most windowsills. They are known for their velvety leaves and their ability to bloom all year without a dormant period.
African violets are easy to care for. They have small root systems, so the soil should be kept moist but never wet. Take care not to get water on the leaves because this can cause spotting and rotting. Remove dead leaves to keep the plant tidy and encourage new growth. Feeding them once a month will help keep African violets continuously flowering.
A Christmas cactus boasts a lovely tropical style and is exceptionally easy to care for. Flowers appear during the blooming period and come in hues of purple, pink, and red. When the plant isn’t blooming, it shows off pretty, segmented greenery that almost looks like a chain of foliage.
Christmas cactus like plenty of sunlight and humidity and will thrive in a bathroom window. Allow the plant to dry between thorough waterings and be sure that the soil is adequately draining. Once the plant has bloomed, keep it dry and in a cool area for about a month. This will prompt the plant to bloom again.
Citrus plants are fruit-baring trees that rely on plenty of sunlight to thrive. They should be kept outside when the weather is warm but can be brought indoors when daytime temperatures fall below 65 degrees F. Citrus plants can be acclimated to lower light conditions by keeping them in the shade for about a week, just prior to moving indoors. However, citrus plants will still need the brightest window you have to offer in order to thrive. A bright southern exposure is ideal.
There are several different kinds of citrus plants that would grow well indoors and several varieties within each type. All citrus produce richly scented flowers that can fill a room with fragrance. Here’s a list of citrus plants you can try growing indoors:
Cyclamen is known for its unusual fluttery flowers and beautiful heart-shaped foliage. Flowers can be found in shades of red, white, and pink. Cyclamen can be grown outdoors in a shady area but it may go dormant when temperatures rise above 70 degrees F. Cyclamen’s love of cool temperatures make it especially popular for winter holiday décor. Kept indoors during the winter months, or all year, the plant should bloom on a regular cycle. Place cyclamen where it can receive bright, indirect sunlight.
Orchids have become incredibly popular flowering plants for growing indoors. They come in a huge variety of shapes, sizes, and colors and the flowers last for weeks. Orchids do require special attention to stay healthy, so you will need to stick to a watering and feeding schedule. Overwatering can be a problem for orchids because the roots can rot easily, so the soil should not stay wet. Instead water your orchid sparingly, allowing the soil surface to dry completely between waterings.
Rieger begonias are a cross between wax begonias and tuberous begonia varieties that results in the best characteristics of both. They produce lovely, delicate flowers in a variety of shades, some with two or more tones. Keep your Rieger begonias in a small pot on a windowsill or on a shelf that gets light from a nearby window. Soil should be well-drained and kept damp.
How to Care for Winter Flowering Indoor Plants
1. The most important step in plant care for flowering plants is placing them in an area of your home where they will get adequate sunlight. Many types of houseplants can grow without full sun, but most will need to be kept in indirect sunlight, near a window.
2. You will also want to make sure that your houseplants are potted in containers that allow for proper water drainage. Potted flowers grown in containers specifically designed for indoor usually consist of a pot with holes for water drainage, and a saucer to capture the excess water.
3. Like all houseplants, your winter flowering indoor plants should be protected from drafts. Air vents and drafty windows and doorways can expose your plants to temperature extremes and, especially in the case of heat vents, create an excessively dry environment.
Growing flowering plants indoors is the perfect way to bring a warm-weather feel to winter. Blooming indoor plants are also great companions to foliage houseplants. Grow them together and you can enjoy a garden year-round!