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Protecting Container Plants in Winter

Category: Presenting "The Curious Gardener"


Containers at Dorian’s front entrance. The two large ones are made of fiberglass, so they are not prone to breakage. The smaller one is terracotta, so I will bring it indoors.

When Rebecca asked me for advice on protecting her potted plants over the winter, I had a few suggestions as follows:

  • Huddle the pots together in a protected spot next to the house and bury them in shredded leaves or surround them with hay bales.
  • Plants that are not hardy in your region must be brought indoors. Indoors, put them in the basement or garage and water them sparingly. They will go dormant and you can put them outside again in Spring.
  • Plants that are in terracotta pots should be brought indoors or removed from the pots so the pots can be brought indoors. If leaving the plant outdoors, leave soil around the roots and lay it on its side covered in mulch or hay to protect its roots.
  • Last summer I picked up a tidbit from Amy O’Donnell of Sugar Tools, a shop in Camden, Maine. She suggested lining the inside of your pot with bubble wrap before putting your soil and plant in, so that it can freeze and thaw without damaging roots or heaving the plant out of the pot.

Also, there are lots of beautiful pots being made now that are not clay. We have several that are made of fiberglass but look just like stone or clay. A process is used where a stone dust is mixed with the fiberglass for the outer layer, and it really does look like the real thing.

I found more good information on overwintering potted plants on the GardensAlive website.








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