Guide to Taking Care of Your Houseplants During Cold Snap

We hope it doesn’t happen but during transition months, chances are your beloved green buddies might face a sudden cold spell. We are sure this won’t make you happy. However, with the right care, you can revive your houseplants and restore their strength. Here’s a well-furnished guide on rescuing cold-stricken plants –

Signs Your Plants are Too Cold:

Free Plant Snow photo and picture

Source: Pixabay

Be on the lookout for these signs to be sure whether your houseplants are literally giving each other a cold shoulder or not –

Wilting: Cold-stressed plants often show wilting leaves which is a clear signal of distress.

Discolouration: Watch out for unusual colour changes such as browning or darkening of leaves, further indicating damage from the cold.

Rough Texture: If your plant feels unusually brittle or crisp, it may be a casualty of the frosty weather.

Slow Growth: Please note that cold can hinder growth. So, if your plant seems stuck in time, chances are they’re walking on thin ice.

What to Do for Cold-Exposed Houseplants

Free Frosty Weather Ice Crystals photo and picture

Source: Pixabay

Bring Them to Warmer Temperatures:
The very first step is to move your cold-stricken houseplants to a warmer and more stable environment. The ideal case scenario here would be indoor spaces with controlled temperatures. At the same time, it is important to avoid drastic changes. To prevent your green babies from thermal shock, focus on a gradual transition. Sudden shifts from extreme cold to warmth can cause additional stress to the plant.

Water Right Away:
Those with a green thumb would be aware of the fact that cold weather can deplete moisture from plants. Hence, water your houseplants promptly to replenish their hydration levels. And though swift rehydration is crucial, steer clear from overwatering. Maintain a balance to prevent waterlogged soil, which can severely harm them.

Skip Fertilizers:
Do not apply fertilizers immediately after a cold snap. Both indoor and outdoor plants need time to recover and introducing fertilizers prematurely may aggravate stress. Put down fertilizers only when you see signs of recovery, such as new growth or stabilized health.

Prune Dead Foliage:
Carefully trim any visibly damaged or dead parts of the plant using clean and sharp pruning shears. This not only removes cold-stricken parts but also redirects the plant’s energy towards healthier areas. However, your job isn’t done here! It is crucial to regularly inspect the potted plant for continued signs of stress or deterioration and prune it as and when needed to facilitate renewed growth and make it thrive.

Provide Additional Support:
Exposure to cold can reduce the humidity levels of houseplants. Whether you buy plants online or from a local nursery, make sure to increase humidity around the plant via a humidity tray or place a water-filled container nearby. If the cold persists, consider providing a temporary cover or insulation to shield your green babies from further temperature fluctuations.

Observe and Adjust:
Keep a close eye on your plant’s recovery. If you see a flourishing change in colour, new growth and overall improved health, give yourself a pat. Adjust your care routine (watering frequency, light exposure and more) based on the plant’s response.

Can I Even Save My Cold-Exposed Plant or Not?

Free Hat Watering Can photo and picture

Source: Pixabay

If the roots remain healthy and show signs of life, such as firmness and a white colour, there’s hope. You can even conduct a scratch test on the stems; if you see green tissue beneath, the plant is still alive. However, if the plant’s roots are mushy or dark, and the stems appear brown throughout, the damage may be irreversible.

When you are armed with the right knowledge, you can nurse your houseplants back to life. Rest, implement the aforementioned steps to make your cold-stressed plants looking good and healthy.

About the author


A creative person by heart and presently working with FNP as a content curator, Anushka has 4+ years of experience in content writing, editing and marketing. She loves designing for her writing pieces and is skilled at writing a multitude of genres including narrative, fiction, poetry, fantasy and short story. When not working, she can be usually found watching anime or framing random story plots in her head.