Glazed pots – Winter storage

Fri. Nov. 3, 2017

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Glazed pots – Winter storage

Oh, those last minute things to do before winter comes waltzing in!  What to do with glazed pots for the winter? Personally, I don’t always manage to store them.  I’ve had the pot pictured below (actually have 2) for at least 8 years.  They’ve never been stored inside.  I’ve noticed one small crack on the glazing at the lip.  I leave them out every year and put greens in them for winter display.

old ceramic pot for winter

The most important thing is that your pots are dry as we enter winter and stay as dry as possible.

If there’s an opportunity for water to get under those cracks, then you’ll likely see damage in the spring. What happens is the moisture in the soil will freeze, thaw, freeze, thaw which causes expanding and contracting. It’s the same thing that happens to our plants, we call that “heaving” and it can lift the plants right out of the ground. If you keep containers dry, you shouldn’t have a problem.

New glazed ceramic pot

I bought the above glazed pot at 50% a couple of years ago.  I love a good deal!  With it’s more delicate glaze, I kept it on the porch out of the rain/snow.  Last year I created a winter display and gave it away.

Festive container

burning bush containers

The pot in the foreground has a deliberate cracking in the glaze.  I’ll pull this one up on the porch for winter display.  It has much more protection!

Terra cotta pots can also suffer from winter damage. I usually put these in the shed. The main reason is to keep them dry. The cold isn’t really the issue.  Of course, the pot below would be shot if I left it outside for the winter.

Pot o' gold

If you have expensive pots but don’t have the room to store them inside, then empty out the soil (compost it), tip them upside down on 2×4’s, make sure they’re dry and then secure a tarp over them.