Winter can be a tough time for any type of gardener. The blooming season is over, harvest had ended, and the garden has been put to bed. Now what? Turns out, you can still enjoy your favorite hobby all year long. Here are some of our favorite ways to enjoy an indoor garden in the winter no matter where you live.
GROWING VEGETABLES INDOORS
If you have a grow light system, you can grow beautiful vegetables inside all year long. You can purchase a grow light system, or make your own. But you’ll need a good amount of space with designated light in a cool space. Keep it away from any heat source like a fireplace or stove. Then you can start growing your seeds using your usual gardening techniques, keeping the plants under the lights at least 12-16 hours a day.
What types of vegetables grow best indoors?
Water regularly and with tender loving care, you can still enjoy your vegetable garden all year long. There are several vegetables that tolerant indoor planting very well. For best results, choose plants are happy with artificial light, mature quickly, and stay compact enough to grow in containers. Here’s a few plants to get you started:
· Beets: Choose 6-inch pots and you’ll have baby beets ready to harvest in about 6 weeks.
· Carrots: Short and round carrot varieties grow very well in 6-inch deep pots. Baby carrots are ready to harvest in 6-8 weeks.
· Herbs: Herbs are always a great option for a sunny windowsill, no need for a fancy grow light system.
· Lettuce and/or Kale: Young kale is milder and sweeter and great for an indoor garden. Both lettuce and kale are ready to harvest at baby stage in about 4-weeks.
· Mushrooms: You can find easy mushroom kits to grow this one indoors and enjoy in just 2 weeks.
· Scallions: Green onions are a great option that grow easily indoors and are ready to harvest in about 30 days at 4-inches tall.
· Spinach: An excellent option for winter soups and salads, spinach is ready for harvest in a little over a month and is sweet and tender.
BEAUTIFUL LOW-LIGHT HOUSE PLANTS
Of course, one of the best ways to still enjoy lush green plants all year long is to embrace house plants in every room. You can create a whole collection of low-light loving indoor plants that can satisfy your gardening itch.
Some of the most colorful and easy-care indoor plants thrive in low-light conditions. This makes them easy to use in almost every room in your home. We’ve gathered up some of the best options for low-light rooms in your home. Most rooms in the house get some natural light, and there are plenty of houseplants that tolerate these low light conditions and thrive.
Tips for low-light indoor plants:
We all know and love the benefits of houseplants, but what about that dark corner that is in desperate need of a little greenery, is there a plant that could there too? Yep. There absolutely is. Follow these tips to get the most out of every type of houseplant.
· Rotate your plants every few weeks so that the side of the plant facing the wall is getting its fair share of sun.
· If your room has absolutely no windows, you should leave the lights as long as possible (about 12 hours a day)
· Rotate low-light plants for a few weeks at a time before moving them back to a naturally lit room.
· If your plant looks long and leggy, it probably needs to have more light. Rotate it out and put it near a window until it perks up, then you can rotate again.
· If your plant starts to lose its color, it also needs a little window rotation.
Low-light indoor plants:
These plants work great indoors, aren’t fussy or picky and are easy to grow. Pick your favorite one that’s perfect for the basement, office, den, or north bedroom.
This beautiful spot of green is very tolerant of dark interiors. It is a fast-growing vine, making it perfect for hanging baskets. It could also be trained to grow up a trellis or totem. Just water when the soil feels dry and you’re good to go.
Pothos does not like full sun, so they work great as house plants. They are often confused with Philodendron, as they are also a vine. They are an easy-care plant that comes in a variety of colors and bi-colors, including dark green, chartreuse, white-and-green, yellow-and-green, and spotted silver.
3. ZZ Plant
ZZ is also known as an indestructible houseplant. It tolerates dark corners and neglect very well. Although it’s an African native, it does just as well in an office with only fluorescent lighting and occasional watering when someone happens to remember. It’s great for someone who travels a lot or forgets to water on a regular basis.
Who says you can’t have a palm tree in your suburban home? The Parlor Palm is a slow-growing Mexican native that does well low-light rooms. It grows to just 4 feet tall and makes a bold statement in any room. It’ll survive beautifully through the winter with occasional watering and a mist to the leaves. It’s sister plant, the ponytail palm, is more haphazard-looking with long leaves and a fat base. It comes in a variety of heights and is great for travelers. The ponytail palm stores excess water in its chubby base, so it can go for several weeks of neglect.
5. Boston Fern
Perhaps one of the most popular plants for interior design, the Boston fern has earned it’s rank as a top houseplant. It’s gorgeous, gree, and lush without being finicky. Boston ferns thrive in shady indoor locations away from cold drafts or heat ducts. Water whenever the soil feels dry to the touch, and mist during the winter to minimize leaf drop.
If you’re looking for a plant that offers a little more color, few houseplants offer as many options as Dieffenbachia. These beautiful plants have speckled or splotched leaves in either yellow-and-green or white-and-green. Although they grow well in dark rooms, they do prefer some indirect light to keep them from getting too leggy. Also, keep in mind these plants are poisonous, so keep them away from pets and children.
The red Aglaonemahas has taken over the houseplant in recent years. With spectacular bright green leaves, this houseplant will brighten even the darkest room.
8. Snake Plant
Of course, the snake plant is always a good option and makes a great gift because it’s so easy to care for. The upward, sword-like leaves make it a striking indoor plant. While it will grow taller in more light will help it grow, it can tolerate darkness.