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Did you know that growing coleus indoors as a houseplant is incredibly simple? You can propagate it effortlessly by taking a cutting from an existing coleus plant or by rescuing a potted coleus from your outdoor porch, patio, or deck – all at no cost.
Coleus has surged in popularity as a summer landscape plant, offering a diverse range of foliage colors that span the spectrum from bold to near-neon. It’s ideal for filling flowerbeds, hanging baskets, and containers with striking visual appeal.
However, in most climates, coleus behaves as an annual, particularly sensitive to cold weather. Even the slightest frost can cause these tender plants to wither and perish swiftly, often among the first casualties of a chilly spell.
Yet, here’s the silver lining – while cold temperatures might spell the end for outdoor coleus plants, you can continue relishing their vibrant foliage indoors during the long, wintry months. Coleus thrives as a houseplant, ensuring you can enjoy their beauty regardless of the weather outside.
Come spring and summer, when the seasons cycle back, you’ll have ready-to-grow coleus plants for your flowerbeds or containers, all without spending a penny!
Top Coleus Varieties
Originating mainly from Asia, Coleus comprises over 60 subspecies. Despite this diversity, all varieties stem from the Plectranthus scutellarioides species, often crossbred with others.
Among the favored coleus varieties are Wizard Mix, Stained Glassworks Kiwi Fern, Fishnet Stockings, Black Dragon, Trailing Plum, Rustic Orange, Henna, Limelight, and several others.
Ideal Pot Size for Cultivating Coleus Indoors
The appropriate pot size largely hinges on the plant’s dimensions. If you’ve acquired a new coleus from a nursery, transition it into a container just slightly larger than its previous one. For beginners and new plants, a pot ranging from 5 to 8 inches in diameter should suffice.
Additionally, coleus can thrive in hanging baskets and creatively designed pots held by macramé holders!
Coleus As A Houseplant
Ultimately, coleus emerges as an ideal houseplant, originating from Asia and the Australian coast and thriving as a perennial in warm or tropical climates. It exhibits resilience, persisting for multiple years if shielded from freezing temperatures. Being part of the mint family, it adapts well to various conditions, including container cultivation.
This vibrant plant doesn’t demand extended periods of light or rich soil fertility to display its distinctive foliage. In essence, all you need for successful indoor coleus growth is a warm space with ample sunlight streaming through a window.
What’s particularly remarkable is how effortlessly you can create your own coleus houseplants, making it an incredibly budget-friendly endeavor. If you’re already cultivating coleus outdoors during the summer, transitioning them to indoor houseplants is surprisingly simple.
You can bring entire potted coleus plants indoors for the winter. Alternatively, if your plants are too large or situated directly in flowerbeds, you can easily propagate new houseplants by taking small cuttings from existing ones.
No existing plants to work with? Not a problem at all. Starting coleus from seeds indoors is incredibly easy and cost-effective. With that in mind, here’s your comprehensive guide to cultivating coleus indoors, whether from existing plants, cuttings, or by sowing seeds!
Saving Potted Plants – Growing Coleus Indoors As A Houseplant
Transitioning a potted plant from your porch, patio, or deck to an indoor houseplant before the onset of the first frost is a straightforward process that can yield successful growth and maintenance.
To ensure their well-being, position existing potted plants where they can bask in at least 6 hours of daily sunlight, ideally placing them near a southern-facing window. This orientation maximizes exposure to the winter sun’s arc, providing optimal light.
Maintaining a cozy indoor temperature isn’t a challenge for coleus; they thrive in environments above 60 degrees Fahrenheit. These plants favor moisture, so regular watering to keep the soil consistently damp is essential.
Avoid exposing the plants to drafts or heating vents to prevent dehydration. Additionally, as a rule of thumb for both indoor and outdoor coleus cultivation, promptly remove any blooming stems. Not only are the blooms unimpressive, but they also drain substantial energy from the plant.
Creating Coleus Houseplant From A Cutting- Growing Coleus Indoors As A Houseplant
During the summer outdoor growth, coleus plants often sprawl into substantial sizes, making it nearly impractical to bring an entire plant indoors. In such scenarios, resorting to taking cuttings from an existing plant becomes the ideal solution!
Coleus cuttings exhibit exceptional propagation capabilities. Not only are they perfect for establishing houseplants, but they also serve as an excellent method to generate numerous new plants during summer, filling flowerbeds without any cost. All you require is a mature coleus plant, a pair of scissors, and a small container filled with either soil or water.
To gather a cutting, identify a lengthy, mature stem with an apical tip—a straightforward term indicating a mature stem with a bud at its end. Then, trim the stem at its base and remove the initial few sets of leaves.
Rooting Your Cutting
At this stage, you have two options: either place the stem in water or insert it directly into soil for rooting. Both methods are effective, but starting in water often results in slightly faster root development. Coleus roots so effortlessly that using a rooting hormone isn’t necessary.
When rooting in water, once the coleus develops roots a few inches long, you can transplant it into its permanent container. If starting directly in the soil, maintain soil moisture while the plant establishes its roots.
Using cuttings is an excellent means to maintain a consistent line of plants year after year. Not only does it save significantly on your gardening expenses, but it also allows you to effortlessly preserve your preferred colors and varieties!
Growing Coleus From Seed- Growing Coleus Indoors As A Houseplant
If you don’t already have coleus in your garden, starting your own houseplants from seeds is a hassle-free option.
Growing from seeds offers numerous benefits to gardeners. Primarily, it enables you to discover distinctive and vivid varieties that might be challenging to find as fully-grown plants in stores. Moreover, starting from seeds allows you to cultivate numerous plants with minimal investment in seed. Seed Link: Rainbow Mix Coleus Seed
Sow coleus seeds directly into your chosen container and position them in the warmest room in your house. To boost humidity and hasten germination, cover the container with plastic wrap until the seeds sprout. After germination, relocate the container to a sunny windowsill and maintain soil moisture through regular watering.
Growing coleus indoors is truly that simple! Here’s to experimenting with cultivating coleus as a houseplant this year and ensuring an abundance for planting next spring. Cheers to your green thumb endeavors!