By now all the tender plants you grew outdoors and wanted to keep have been brought inside. If any of these plants do not have a comfortable spot in a bright window or under fluorescent lights gently lay them out on the compost pile and let them do their bit for next year’s garden.
Since the days are shorter and the nights are colder many indoor plants become semi-dormant and will do better with less water and no fertilizer. Make sure that no plant has been placed on a radiator, on top of a working TV, or over heat vent.
If the outdoor temperature drops below 20-30 degrees F check the temperature between the plants and the window. If the temperature goes to the low 40s, or below, pull the plants away from the glass or insulate the space with newspaper until the temperature outdoors goes up.
Since winter is the giving and sharing season here are some fun do-it-yourself gifts.
A bud vase selected for a special desk or table. Add some flowers and a card that promises regular refills.
A mini English Garden. A wicker basket (size depending on space available), planted with small flowering and foliage plants. For security line the basket with plastic before planting and perhaps provide a waterproof pad underneath.
A Saturnalia shrub. These are great for single friends. Start with a solid box; any color – white, brown, or covered with foil. Fill with wrapped, easy-to-open, goodies; such as sardines that don’t need a special can opener. Add an orange for old-times sake and a split or two of bubbly. Fill the cracks with kisses. Include a napkin and a piece of real green. Top it off with four pieces of evergreen lashed together with a heavy rubber band to cover the box. Decorate the greens with ribbon and small gifts or gold and silver kisses attached with paperclips
Remember, always wrap plants and flowers to protect from cold before taking them outside. To deliver, place wrapped gift inside a large garbage bag for more protection and a convenient carrying handle.