Coleus potted and inside

Kelby MillerOctober 10, 2013

I have a question about a Coleus that I have repotted and moved inside. I did this to make room for fall decorations on my front porch.

Will my Coleus thrive inside? I have it in a NE facing window at the moment. It is always about 60-70 degrees in my house so I'm just wondering how long it should last in here or some things I should do to make it thrive. Here is a picture of it:

I do have 3 holes on the bottom of that pot so when I water it I water it thoroughly and let all the water drain out.

Thank you for any advice.

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In Victorian days, coleus were grown only as is only in more recent times that these plants have been appreciated and grown for their contribution to the summer garden.

If you take care of it properly, your coleus can live many years as a houseplant. It needs quite bright light (but avoid direct sun) - even so, the variegation or patterning on the leaf may fade a bit. Keep the soil moist to the touch - not too wet and do not allow to dry out. Cut off any bloom stalks and keep the plant pinched back to encourage dense bushy growth. You can take back outside next summer if you wish or take cuttings during the winter to create more plants - coleus root rapidly and easily in just water.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2013 at 2:46PM
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Kelby Miller

"Cut off any bloom stalks and keep the plant pinched back to encourage dense bushy growth."

I'm very sorry but could you elaborate please? By cut off the bloom stalks, do you mean the stalk that the purple flowers grow on? The very tall ones I mean. And what exactly do I pinch back, using my picture as the example.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2013 at 4:52PM
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pinch back the tall spike that had blooms on them.. ( the non leafy spikes)
I loved having my coleus in the house, unfortunately so did my cat.....lil devil loves to nibble some plants

    Bookmark   October 20, 2013 at 1:26PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Agree, many people save Coleus inside for winter, especially the really cool, unusual ones you don't know if they'll have at stores again next year. I've been saving them in various ways for decades. More good news is that yours looks like one of the standard varieties that you would be able to find again if this one fails.

As long as it comes inside free of pests/disease, it should be fine. I've had some issues with spider mites before. If it had developed when there was more time left to spend inside, I might have had to shower them off of the plants, but plants recovered well after being put back outside soon after I noticed the webbing.

They REALLY want to bloom this time of year and growth usually pauses while it does that. If you remove one flower stalk, all energy will be directed to making another, until the blooming season comes to an end. Allowing them to bloom has no bearing on their ability to survive. The little flower petals do make a bit of a mess though, but are easy to vacuum.

Your particular plant could hardly be more stout and bushy at this point, not at all leggy or floppy, though Coleus will abide about any kind of trimming you'd like to do, to the point of bonsai. Not everyone shares the obsession with a shrubby appearance, and in some instances a tall, thin plant is an interesting part of a display or pot. Every healthy leaf removed is one less leaf available to manufacture sustenance and energy for growth/blooming.

Are there some holes in leaves? The sun behind is so bright, I'm not sure. If you see signs of chewing, look for a little green caterpillar, they LOVE Coleus. Might be more than one. It looks like there might be a couple little poo's on the right side of the pot. I often notice those droppings before the holes in the leaves when I've brought in plants with caterpillars before, which has happened a lot when I lived in OH and here in AL. They are very well disguised.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2013 at 10:13AM
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