5 Ways to Bring Your Garden Indoors This Winter

Fall is officially upon us and many people don’t want to say goodbye to their beautiful plants. Luckily there are many options that will help you bring your garden in during these upcoming cold months. While we offer many container and wreath decorations in our Holiday Shop, there is a handful of things you can do on your own that will bring some green into your home! Here are 5 ways that you can bring your garden indoors this holiday season.

1. (Annual) Plants to Bring Indoors

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There are some annual container plants that can continue growing indoors. However, there are a few guidelines that need to be taken into account before bringing your pots inside.

Lighting: Most plants do best in bright, indirect light but there are some plants that do well in darker rooms.

  • North facing windows: These windows get the least amount of light. Windows on the north side of the house are good for plants that can tolerate low light conditions.

  • East facing windows: These windows have good indirect light throughout the day, with the greatest light in the morning hours. In this type of room, do not place the plant too far from the window due to the cooler temperatures of eastern sun.

  • South facing windows: Rooms with these windows will be the brightest and sunniest rooms of the house- especially in the winter months. Plants that enjoy direct light or longer periods of light will do well in these rooms.

  • West facing windows: Provide indirect light in the morning and strong light and higher temperatures in the afternoon. Plants that need direct light or that like a bright room will do well.

Humidity: Houseplants generally like humidity levels of 40-60 percent. In winter months the humidity levels tend to be lower. To combat this, you should group plants together to help raise the humidity. Plants let off moisture from their leaves, thereby helping each other by raising the humidity level around them.

Plants to consider:

  • Geraniums & Scented Geraniums

  • Coleus (You will have to pinch back heavily)

  • Mandevilla (Needs sunlight and humidity)

  • Ferns (Can handle low light but needs humidity)

  • Oxalis

  • Fuchsias (Although they might not bloom until next year)

  • Tradescantia

  • Setcreasea Purple Heart

  • Annual succulent (These need lots of light and would be best in a west- or south-facing window)

  • Cordyline

  • Ivy

  • Begonias

2. Herbs That You Can Grow Over Winter

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There are several herbs that can be grown indoors over the winter. Herbs can be brought inside and grown on a windowsill. The fragrance, color, and flavor of the herbs can be enjoyed throughout much of the winter. You can buy transplants, take cuttings from your existing plants or even grow new ones from seed.

If you bring your existing plants indoors, you will need to do so before you turn the heat on in your house. Most herbs will need 5-6 hours of direct sunlight—so a south-facing window is the best location for these plants. An east or west facing window, without obstruction will also be suitable.

Once indoors, the water and nutrient needs of your herbs become more critical. You will need to give your indoor herbs a good soaking once or twice a week, or as soon as they dry out. There will be a lack of humidity that can be a problem, so you may have to give them a misting in order to keep them from drying out.

Herbs that are relatively easy to grow indoors in a sunny window:

  • Chives

  • Mint

  • Parsley

  • Scented Geranium

  • Oregano
  • Lemon Verbena

  • Rosemary

  • Basil

  • Lavender

  • Lemon Balm

  • Sage

  • Thyme

3. Air Plants (Tillandsia)

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Air plants, or Tillandsia, are a low-maintenance houseplant that doesn't require soil to grow. They are found in a wide variety of environments, ranging from jungles to the deserts! They are epiphytes and attach themselves to trees or rocks, absorbing moisture through their leaves. Since air plants can thrive in a wide range of environments, they are adaptable and tolerant of conditions and require minimal care.

Temperature: Tillandsia can withstand temperatures as low as 35 degrees- although they prefer to be in the 70’s to 90’s. This means that they can withstand our cooler months, but will need to be brought in for the harsh winter temperatures.Light: Outdoors, you should place them in a bright but indirect sun with good air movement. They can tolerate early morning sun. Indoors, they enjoy bright light to filtered sun.

Light: Outdoors, you should place them in a bright but indirect sun with good air movement. They can tolerate early morning sun. Indoors, they enjoy bright light to filtered sun.

Watering: Water once a week by dunking the plant into water, soaking for 5-10 minutes, then shaking out the leaves until the water drips off. If they are indoors you may need to water more frequently because of the drier air. Always allow your plants to dry completely between waterings.

Soil: NO SOIL NECESSARY. Mount them on wood, rocks, trees or even hang them with wire or fishing line. Avoid wrapping the base of the plants in moss- this will not allow the plants to dry out between waterings. You may mount Tillandsia to wood or rocks with a sturdy adhesive such as Liquid Nails or you can use wire around the base. Eventually, the plant will attach roots and anchor itself to the mount.

Fertilization: You should fertilize your Tillandsia once a month by saturating with a dilute solution (1/4th tsp. per one gallon of water) of balanced fertilizer. They are especially sensitive to overfertilizing, so make sure you stick to fertilizing them once a month.

Some air plants flower, or blossom. They will bloom only once during their lifetime and in general, they are not fragrant. Most Tillandsia will have offsets, or pups, around the base of the mother plant that can be separated once they are about half the size of the mother plant.

4. Get Creative and Make a Succulent Wreath

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We are having a Succulent Grapevine Wreath Make and Take at our Old House Open House on November 4th! Create a beautiful and unique table decoration for your holiday season. You can choose between two sizes: an 8” wreath ($20) and an 18" wreath ($40). Come whenever you can during business hours, but give us a call at 630-355-4000 in advance to let us know which size you would like to make.

5. Dried Arrangements

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There are many unique decorations you can create using plants and flowers from your own gardens! Some things you might find this fall are:

  • Hydrangea flowers

  • Sedum flowers

  • Rose hips

  • Grass Plumes

  • Leaves & Branches

  • Cones from evergreens

  • Seed pods from trees and perennials

  • Acorns

  • Bark pieces

  • Berries from trees and perennials (short-term use)

Next year, start gathering your flowers as they bloom. Listed below are some ideas to get you started but it's fun to experiment too! Try out all sorts of things and see what works best!

  • Yarrow

  • Roses

  • Lavender

  • Globe thistle

  • Salvia

  • Statice

  • Strawflower

  • Scabiosa

  • Celosia

  • Gypsophilia

  • Centaurea Montana

  • Liatris

  • Baptisia

  • Lady's Mantle

  • Eryngium

There are many ways to dry flowers. The most common, and easiest way is air drying. You should cut your flowers a little before they are fully bloomed. This is because the bud will continue to open once it is cut. After you have cut the flowers you wish to dry, gather the flower stems into small bunches and wrap them with a rubber band or string. Make sure you tie them up tight since the stems of the plants will shrink slightly. You will want to hang the bunches upside down with a hook or string.

Drying times will vary depending on the type of flower and the drying conditions. Drying flowers require good air circulation and low humidity. You will know the flowers are done drying when they feel stiff and the stems break easily.

After the flowers are done drying, arrange them! You can simply put the flowers into a vase or lay them on a table. Another good option is making your own wreath with the flowers. For this you will need a plain grapevine wreath, then you can simply weave the dried flowers into the wreath or attach with hot glue to make a beautiful pattern.

Aurora Location

2000 Montgomery Road,

Aurora, IL 60504

Phone. 630-820-8088

Naperville Location

25w471 Plank Road,

Naperville, IL 60563

Phone. 630-355-4000

Holiday Shop Hours

November 1-December 23
Monday-Saturday: 9:00am-4:00pm
Sunday: 11:00am-4:00pm  

Growing for the future with
right plants in right places.