Monday, December 4th, 2006...7:00 am

Leaving your plants for summer break

In response to a November 7th post about growing plants in the dorm, the Garden Lady received the following question from a Marklen about how to care for your dorm plant when you are away for a month or so.

What about if you are away for the summer break? What can you do if you are away for a month or so?

There are a few easy options to care for your dorm plant when you are away for a month or so. One is to ask a friend to care for the plant over the vacation break. The second option is to take the plant home to Mom and/or Dad to take care of the plant. The last option is to find a safe outdoors location that is bright but shaded and only gets a few hours of sun a day and, if the plant is the hardy kind like Aspidistra orĀ  Sansevieria, to leave the plant or plants outdoors when you are on vacation for a month or more. The safe time to take plants outdoors is when the leaves are on the trees, approximately the end of May. Do not put plants that have been in the room all year into direct sun or the leaves can bleach. Put the plants under the trees. I take most of my plants outdoors and leave them outdoors all summer. I only water them if there is a drought. The plants are in pots that have good drainage holes in case it is too rainy a summer. I don’t want the plants to sit in too much water. I bring the plants indoors in the early fall when the leaves start falling off the trees. I don’t do a thing to the plants all summer. But when I bring the plants indoors, I have to remove any tree leaves that have fallen into the pots and give the plant a good shower to be sure that insects haven’t made the plant into their home.

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