How to Properly Move Your Houseplants Outdoors for the Summer, Because You’re Doing It Wrong – Lifehacker

how-to-properly-move-your-houseplants-outdoors-for-the-summer,-because-you’re-doing-it-wrong-–-lifehacker

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Photo: Jackson Stock Photography (Shutterstock)Sunlight and summer rain can be great for outdoor plants, but it’s also a great time to give your indoor plants some fresh air. Unfortunately, though, some plants make it outside and then never make it back...because you killed them. The timing and positioning of your plants are important, along with some other factors, so here are some tips for transitioning your indoor plants outdoors and keeping them alive through the season.What’s the right time to take your indoor plants outdoors?Timing is everything when it comes to weather and your plants—just like how you have to choose the right time to sow seeds, you should choose the right time to move your indoor plants outside. Even though the spring seems like the best time for planting, an indoor plant is used to much warmer climates and won’t last if the temperature fluctuates. Ready your indoor plants for outdoor living by bringing them outside for short periods of time before leaving them out there for months. Increase their outside time each day, making sure not to leave them out overnight. Once nightly temperatures remain steadily above 50 degrees, it’s safe to bring most plants outside to stay. The best time is usually closer to the beginning of summer, not early spring.Keep indoor plants out of direct sunlight when they’re outdoors Indoor plants love the fresh air in the summer, but they’re not accustomed to extensive bouts of time in the sun. Just like you don’t want to freeze your plants, you also don’t want to burn them. Put indoor plants in a shaded area, a covered porch, or under a voluminous tree to simulate the light it would typically get indoors. Feel free to move them around to get more sun on different days, but move them back to the shaded areas to prevent sunburn in the long term.G/O Media may get a commissionHow to monitor your indoor plants’ moisture when it’s outsideA huge benefit of putting indoor plants outdoors is the natural watering process. Depending on your location, summer rain and humidity can be great for indoor plants, but it’s still essential to monitor your plants’ moisture. Planting site Bloomscape has a practical process for checking your plant’s soil. “Place your finger into the soil about 2”-3”, and if it feels dry, water thoroughly, then wait a day, and check again.” Watering depends on your location and the weather patterns for the summer, so this method of checking moisture should help you keep track of your plant’s needs. They also mention misting your plants often if you live in the “Southwest or a desert climate.”Repotting indoor plants for outdoor growthIf you’ve ever seen a plant bloom overnight, you know how quickly a plant can grow, so consider investing in a larger pot for plants that can grow pretty large, as repotting will give them room to grow over the summer.A lot of new growth, though, means a plant will need more nutrients, so you should take that consideration as well by giving your indoor plants some extra fertilizer to complement their outdoor growth. Home improvement site Apartment Guide mentions, “If you see a plant growing spindly and pale, it may be deficient in a vital nutrient. You can usually treat deficiencies with a scoop of organic compost fertilizer.” Of course, make sure not to overfeed them in the process.When to bring indoor plants back in the house Most importantly, you’ll want to bring most plants back inside before the temperature dips below 50 degrees, and well before the first frost. You want to make sure your plants thrive outside, but then ready to live out the colder months back inside, safe and warm with you.
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