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Bird of Paradise and Snake Plants

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Brighten Up Your Space With Indoor Plants

Tips on Decorating with Plants and Keeping your Houseplants Alive Through the Winter with Tyler Cates from Blueville Nursery

What are some of your favorite houseplants to brighten up a space during the winter?

African Violets and Christmas Cactus have beautiful blooms. You can kind of force some things to bloom, while others have a mind of their own and bloom when they want. I’ve had African Violets bloom all year long. Really, anything that adds color is great. Beyond that, Snake Plants and ZZ Plants are nice because they’re low maintenance.

What are some benefits of houseplants? 

They can brighten up your space and bring green inside. They’ll certainly brighten your mood. They’re fun, especially if you don’t have pets. They can be your pets, or your own little hobby to keep you occupied and happy. 

How can you make sure plants get enough light in the winter?

Plants will go dormant in the wintertime. They won’t drop dead like the plants outside and lose all of their leaves, but they will slow down and quit growing. So, they don’t need as much light.

We have grill lights, or artificial lights, you can buy to supplement their light. Grill lights are specifically designed to provide the UV rays that plants need, on different spectrums and different levels. They mimic the sun, which is different than fluorescent lights. 

We also have specific light bulbs that you can put into a fixture. This time of year, my plants are set on timers, for about 6-8 hours a day. In the spring and summer time, I usually set them for around 12 hours a day. I usually try to set them to adjust with the natural sun. 

How often should I water my indoor plants in winter?

I say you’re looking every 10-14 days. Like I said with the light, they’re going dormant, so they’re also using less water. So, just keep them barely moist. Let them dry out, and then give them water again. 

Should I fertilize houseplants in the winter?

No, I would wait until spring before I resumed any fertilizing.

Do you set plants out in the summer?

I don’t personally, because I don’t have the space. But, you certainly can. Just make sure they’re not in direct, full sun because the sun can scorch a lot of things. In summer, they can get some bright light, but not direct. 

What are your favorite tips for decorating with houseplants?

I like doing sets of threes. I have one spot in my home where I have the same pot, but three different sizes: small, medium and large. 

Find what fits your personality and style. There are all kinds of pots and planters to choose from. 

At Blueville, we have different garden stakes that have little gnomes on them, or little creatures that hang off the side like turtles or hedgehogs. They can help spruce up your pot.

When is your busiest time of year for houseplants?

January and February are actually our biggest months for houseplants. We offer 20-30 different species of indoor plants. We get a lot of houseplants in, but they go super fast!

  • African Violet
  • Golden Pothos
  • Bird of Paradise and Snake Plants
  • Snake Plant
  • ZZ Plant, Aloe, and aloe and Chlorophytum
  • Christmas Cactus
  • Blueville Nursery's Tyler Cates
  • Blueville Nursery's Tyler Cates