I read your response with great interest as I, too, would like to save my Eugenia topiaries. Can I use artificial lights throughout the winter to supplement the poor natural light? What do you suggest?
Thank you for your question.
Before bringing any plant indoors it is always best to check the plant for pests. Begin by spraying the plant with a strong blast of water from your garden hose to dislodge any bugs that might be clinging to the leaves. It would also be advisable to repot your plants with new potting soil not only to ensure no pests are being brought indoors but to replenish the soil. Over the summer most of the nutrients in the soil have been utilized.
Placing the plant in a sunny window facing south or west is ideal but, make sure it is not too close to the glazing so as to avoid cold air exposure in winter. Supplemental fluorescent lighting can help your plant maintain healthy green leaves throughout its slower growing winter season.
Your plant should have good air circulation around the globes so leaving 6 – 12 inches all around is advisable.
The plant should be in an appropriate sized pot with a good drainage hole. If roots are growing out the drainage hole or there are dense roots when you insert your finger into the topsoil, it may be time to repot into a bigger size. Only go up one pot size and use a potting soil for containers which can be purchased at your local nursery.
Watering can be tricky depending on the age of your plant. Younger plants need to be watered more frequently, maybe as much as 2-3 times a week, whereas older plants should only need watering about once a week. A good rule is to stick your finger into the topsoil and only water when the top 1 inch, or to your first knuckle, is dry.
Fertilizing should only be needed 3-4 times a year, beginning in the spring, so about every 4-6 weeks. Fertilizing in winter months is not advised.
Trimming your topiary may be done every 2-3 weeks depending on time of year and vigor of plant. Use a sharp, clean pruning instrument, taking care to clean the blades with rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab after every cut.
The link Overwintering Eugenia Topiary, one of our previous archived posts will provide additional links for your reference.