Moving Tropical Plants Outside

Improve the health and appearance of your tropical houseplants by moving them outside in the summer.  They will thank you as they enjoy the fresh air, the rain will wash away the winter’s dust and the bright light will promote healthy growth.

Moving Outside:

Since your tropicals are accustomed to the light and temperatures of your home, be sure to acclimatize them first as a change in their environment can be quite a shock.  Put the plants in a shady spot outside during the day and bring them back inside at night for a few days or weeks first.  Gradually introduce more light until they are well adapted to their outdoor setting to remain throughout the summer. 

Tropical houseplants can scorch when being moved outside.  Some tender plants like orchids and violets may appreciate a sheltered, shady porch where you can control the amount of moisture and light they receive.

Majesty Palm, $84.99

Summer Care:

Your plants will need regular watering as they will dry out quickly when outside.  Consider fertilizing them regularly with a houseplant fertilizer when they get watered.

Be sure to keep an eye out for pests such as aphids, slugs, snails, and caterpillars. 

Weather is a factor that can affect your houseplants, for example, wind can be a huge stressor for your plants as they have not encountered that inside.  Location out of the wind might be best for more top-heavy plants so they don’t get knocked over.

Too much rain can also be detrimental as a heavy downpour can knock off blooms, leaves or wash soil outside the pots.  Make sure there are good drainage holes in your pots so your tropicals are not sitting in water.

Keep an eye on the outdoor night temperatures.  Most tropical houseplants cannot tolerate cold temperatures (below 15 deg C).

Succulent Garden, $26.99

End of the Summer:

Move your tropicals back inside before the first frost.  Check them carefully for pests, under the leaves, in the pots and even under the pots.  Prune off any damaged leaves and spent blooms.  Take this time to repot your plants, change the soil and give them a fresh look as they come inside.