Winter always promises to again bring higher hating cost to homes and also growers.
Some greenhouses I’m sure will close down due to the high fuel cost and others start bracing themselves for fuel bill shock.
Some greenhouses and homes as well will be running the inside a little bit cooler this winter season.
When you decide to lower the temperatures in your home to help decrease monthly heating bills, what about the plants.
Here are a few indoor house plant varieties that will handle those “cooler” indoor temperatures.
Many people are familiar with the “Corn Plant” – Dracaena Massangeana. During these colder temperatures, the “Corn plant” can easily have leaf damage – mottled leaves and brown or blackened tips.
Dracaena Marginata is one Dracaena that will handle the cooler temperatures. Typically the Massangeana will begin to show leaf burn in the high 50 degree range. The marginata can generally handle an additional 10 degrees lower.
Cast Iron Plant – Aspidistra elatior It’s not called the cast iron plant for nothing. The Aspidistra can handle a very wide range of temperatures, 70-80′s down into the 30 degree range.
Rhapis excelsa – The “Lady Palm”, very similar to the temperature range of the Aspidistra. A slow grower but very sturdy. I’ve seen this plant grown outdoors where the temperature hits the high 20′s. The plant is a little more expensive because of it’s slow growth, but worth every penny.
Kentia Palm – One of the “secrets” of a good quality Kentia is the cooler nights that they receive in California. The cooler nights produce foliage that is sturdy and strong. Indoors they don’t get this same temperature drop, but they can handle it with no problem.
When you lower the temperature in your home, your plants also receive this lower temperature. For you to get warmed up, it’s possible to jump under a blanket. Your plants on the other hand just …… s l o w d o w n.
What does this mean?
Your plants will respond slower with growth until things warm up.
Here’s my “Grower Rule of Thumb”
- One night below 65 degrees equals 3 days of grow time.
- Two nights below 65 degrees in a row equals 1 week of grow time.
- Five nights below 65 degrees in a row equals 1 month of grow time.
What do I mean by – grow time. This is the amount of time it will take for the plant to get back to active growing.
People assume that a plant’s activity is based upon the air temperature… that is partly correct. It is the soil temperature that really drives plant growing.
One way to keep your plants growing is by keeping the soil temperatures up. But that’s a subject for another day… Here’s more on the topic of cooler temperatures and indoor house plants.