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Plant shelf over a radiator.

For some reasons, radiators and windows always seem to go together… and that is most  inconvenient for your houseplants. Winter is when most plants need the brightest light possible and that is usually right in front of a windowl And when the heat is on, the hot, dry air from the radiator parches the poor plants sitting on the narrow window ledge just above.

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Wall brackets make it easy to install a plant shelf.

Fortunately, there’s a simple solution: install a wider shelf at the base of the window. Not only does it give you more surface space on which to grow plants, but it also directs heat toward the center of the room, which is where you want it anyway.

There are dozens of ways of installing a plant shelf, but the easiest is probably just to fix brackets to the wall and install a plank over top as in the illustration to the right.

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Take it one step further and add a humidity tray! Credit: Gro-Pro Humidity Tray.

Because warm air rising in front of the shelf can still dry out your plants, you can go one step further and equip the shelf with a humidity tray. That way your plants will have bright light, great humidity, and still get a bit of warmth from the radiator.20161123A.jpg

Larry Hodgson is one of Canada’s best-known garden communicators. He has notably been editor-in-chief of HousePlant Magazine, Fleurs, Plantes et Jardins, À Fleur de Pot and Houseplant Forum magazines and is currently the garden correspondent for Le Soleil and radio garden commentator for CKIA-FM Radio. He has written for many garden publications in both the United States and Canada, including Canadian Gardening, Harrowsmith, Horticulture, Fine Gardening and Organic Gardening. He also speaks frequently to horticultural groups throughout Canada and the U.S. His book credits include The Garden Lover’s Guide to Canada, Complete Guide to Houseplants, Making the Most of Shade, Perennials for Every Purpose, Annuals for Every Purpose, and Houseplants for Dummies, as well as nearly 60 other titles in English and French. He is a past president of the Garden Writers Association (now Garden Communicators International) and the winner of the prestigious 2006 Garden Media Promoter Award offered by the Perennial Plant Association. He resides in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

1 comment on “Growing Houseplants Over a Radiator

  1. Pingback: Keep Plants Away From Heat Sources – Laidback Gardener

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