In 5 Simple Steps You Can Bring Your Outdoor Succulents Indoors For The Winter

Are you aware that you can effortlessly bring containerized succulents into your home as temperatures cool down? It’s a great way to bring the beauty of your garden indoors over the winter months.

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Step 1: Make sure you bring your succulents indoors before the first frost (32 degrees). And if you can, give them one last great drink of water so the container can drain outdoors.

Step 2: Place them in a spot where they have a minimum of 4 hours of direct/indirect light, but keep them away from other indoor plants temporarily.

Step 3: Water again once the soil is dry. (See below for more details). Don’t forget to put a tray under the container. If you want an inexpensive option, use a plastic saucer. If you want something more attractive, look for something made out of metal.

Step 4: It’s also a good time to take a moist paper towel and clean off the plant’s leaves where possible.

Step 5: For the first couple of weeks, observe the plant to see if any insects have joined along for the ride. Once you’re satisfied that the plants are bug or fungus free, you can reposition them around your home. This step is a very effective way to insure that you don’t infect your other houseplants. 

If you’re the type of person that likes additional information, in which case…keep reading.

More Winter Care Tips:

While some cacti/succulents tolerate cold temperatures, many of the succulent plants that we commonly find at local nurseries, plant shops, or grocery stores don’t like the cold. So once you’ve brought them indoors, be sure to find a window that receives the minimum amount of direct/bright light needed for the plant. The combination of the light with the coolness of the window allows the plant to rest between growing periods. 

Do not put the plants near any forced air vents or heat sources. This kind of environmental change can be too significant and will stress the plant (e.g., it will drop leaves or turn yellow). 

For plants like orchids and holiday cacti, keep the soil moist all year round. This means you’ll need to water regularly (approximately once a week), while allowing the soil/planting media to dry out before the next watering. For all other succulents, water no more than once per month. Overwatering will result in root rot by fungal organisms. 

Here’s an important tip to keep in mind: use your index finger to test the dryness or moisture level in the soil. You’ll need to do this for the first few weeks while the plants are indoors so you get a sense of how much time it takes after watering for the soil to become dry. With this knowledge, you can develop a regular watering schedule. 

And finally, make sure your containers drain well or that you have a way to empty out water that collects inside. For example, my orchids are planted in plastic containers that sit inside a more attractive container, so I simply remove the potted orchid and empty out any excess water into the sink. And that’s it!

The outdoors is now indoors and you’ve got a dose of beauty during the cold winter months.

If you’ve got tips and tricks for how you keep your succulents thriving through the winter, let me know. I’d love to share what’s worked for you.



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