Were you gifted a flowering plant for the holidays? Here's how to keep some hardy ones blooming
Some holiday flowering plants can last through the winter and even be replanted outside next spring. Others just aren't hardy enough to survive outdoors here but you can enjoy their blooms indoors for a bit this winter.
If you received beautiful potted plants as presents this holiday season, depending on the variety, with proper care they can last all winter and you can even replant outdoors next spring.
Certain varieties of attractive flowering plants may not be viable long-term indoors, though, and especially outside.
If you received a dwarf campanula or hellebore, you're in luck. These are nursery plants forced to bloom for the holidays. These hardy plants can be grown as houseplants afterward and eventually planted in your garden outdoors.
You can try to grow them as a houseplant and force them back into flower next year, but it's pretty tough to do. After you've enjoyed their blooms and they've faded, these particular plants are probably good candidates for the compost.
Rosemary and lavender plants, however, should keep for a year, perhaps a bit longer. Grow them in pots indoors and move them outdoors in spring. Then enjoy them in your gardens until fall and bring them back indoors to overwinter.
Q: My African Violets are looking very wilted. I only water them once a week and have re-potted them using African violet soil recently. Their lower leaves are looking very limp and wilted. Can someone help? - Judith, in Morrisville
A: This might be a matter of overwatering. African violet plants are rather finicky.
Try watering them on a regular, once-a-week schedule during the growing season (from spring to fall) and then in the winter months, back off on watering a bit.
Repotting with fresh potting soil was a great idea and if only the plant's lower leaves are wilted, your plant might be just fine.
Just in case, take some small cuttings from the leaves, dip them in rooting hormone powder then put the cuttings into a pot with moistened potting soil and they will root readily. This way, you'll have some back-up violets, just in case.
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