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How to Protect Outdoor Flower Pots in the Winter

Keep your home beautiful by making sure your flower pots don't get damaged by winter weather.


  • Step 1: Remove plants soil Remove dead plants and flowers, and dump the soil from your flower pots to prepare them for winter storage.
  • TIP: You can add fertilizer and nutrients to the soil and reuse it the following season.
  • Step 2: Protect terra cotta pots Protect your terra cotta pots by storing them in a dry, sheltered area. During a freeze and thaw cycle, moisture can crack terra cotta and the pots will chip and flake.
  • Step 3: Protect exterior-glazed pots Store pots that are glazed on the outside away from wet weather. Since the entire pot isn't protected by glaze, moisture can penetrate the pot and cause it to crack.
  • Step 4: Protect exterior- and interior-glazed pots Care for glass pots, and pots that are glazed inside and out by moving them indoors if they are empty. If they're not empty because you're growing perennials, avoid watering them. During a freeze, wet soil can expand and crack your pot.
  • Step 5: Consider pot material Consider safe winter materials for your pots. Pots made of Styrofoam, plastic, polyurethane, and fiberglass can be left out over the winter, as well as wooden and concrete pots.
  • Step 6: Protect pots left outdoors Protect fragile pots that you leave out over the winter by wrapping them in bubble wrap, covering them with leaves or straw, or placing them somewhere with a warmer area, such as against one of your house's exterior walls.
  • Step 7: Store pots in a garage or crawl space Store your pots in a garage or crawl space if you don't have room in the house. As long as the pots aren't directly exposed to the elements, they won't crack or break.
  • FACT: In 2009, 2 dairy farmers from Connecticut began producing flower pots molded from dried, deodorized cow manure.

You Will Need

  • Weather-resistant materials
  • Bubble wrap
  • Leaves or straw
  • Garage or crawl space
  • Fertilizer and nutrients (optional)

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