Guest Author - Connie Krochmal
Many of the cacti and succulent species aren’t winter hardy in cold climates. This need not prevent gardeners from growing them. These can be brought indoors or into a greenhouse for the colder months. Storey Publishing has released a wonderful guide that explains how to overwinter tender plants indoors.
“Bulbs in the Basement Geraniums on the Windowsill-How to Grow and Overwinter 165 Tender Plants” is by Alice and Brian McGowan. They owned and operated a nursery for nearly 20 years. So, this book is based on their personal gardening experiences.
Of the 165 tender species featured here, a number of these are succulents. In addition, you can use their overwintering techniques to save all sorts of valuable cacti and succulents that aren’t winter hardy.
This book is illustrated with color photos and color line art.
The authors provide helpful lists that explain the different indoor growing conditions needed by specific kinds of plants. Though there are exceptions, most cacti need overwintered in a cool bright location while many succulents need warmer sunny conditions. The first chapter also explains all of the different methods of propagation.
These plants can be grown outdoors in pots during the summer months, and brought indoors for the winter. The authors explain how to choose a proper container. They also have great suggestions on combo container plantings using tender species. This title also explains how to grow these plants outdoors in gardens.
If you’ve never tried overwintering a plant indoors, take heart. This book takes the mystery out of the subject. It provides all the basic details on how this is done. The authors tell how to choose the most appropriate spots indoors for the plants. As with houseplants, pests and diseases can attack these tender perennials. The authors tell how to prevent and deal with such
This book also explains how to reverse the overwintering process and harden the plants off so they can be taken back outdoors for the summer.
Much of this book is devoted to the individual plant profiles. These tender plants are arranged alphabetically by Latin name. Each profile gives a description of the plant, its common and Latin name, its temperature and light requirements, hardiness, description, information about the various species and cultivars in cultivation, pest problems, and propagation method.