Preparing Your Garden For Winter

Preparing Your Garden For Winter

As the days get shorter and the nights get colder, there are a number of things you can do in the garden to prepare for winter. Putting the garden to bed for the winter is mostly a matter of cleaning up and covering up. As fall progresses and temperatures drop, those plants that aren’t killed outright by frost prepare for dormancy. Performing these few chores now will help get your garden through the cold weather in good shape, and make gardening easier for you come spring. Pull out spent vegetables and annual flowers or cut them off at ground level to leave the roots to decompose in the soil. Cut back herbaceous perennials, noting that those with strong stems and decorative seed heads (such as purple cornflowers or ‘Autumn Joy’ sedum) can be left standing to add visual interest to your winter garden. Perennials like lavender and Russian sage that set next year’s growth buds on woody stems should be left as well. Fallen leaves, dead plants and other debris can harbor diseases, rodents, or insect eggs if left on the ground over the winter. Rake up the debris and use it for compost or dispose of it appropriately.

Spreading mulch around trees, shrubs, and other plants left in the garden over the winter does more than just keep your yard looking neat. It will also help prevent soil moisture loss, moderate the effects of winter temperature fluctuations and help keep weeds from sprouting in the spring by blocking growth and access to sunlight.

Outdoor Backyard Vegetable Garden

Outdoor Backyard Vegetable Garden

Whatever you do, don’t stop watering your plants. They may slow down because of the cold, but they still need water!

Winter Garden Design Ideas

Winter Garden Design Ideas

Plant your garden so that it gets northern or eastern sun exposure. This will make it so that temperatures don’t fluctuate as greatly as it would if it were planted with southern exposure.

Garden With Stone Border

Garden With Stone Border

Winter is a great time to prune trees and other plants because there aren’t any leaves, bugs, or birds that get in the way.

Outdoor Garden With Ornamental Plants

Outdoor Garden With Ornamental Plants

If you’ve really got a green thumb, then you may be looking for ways to garden even in the winter. While the cold weather can deter some people and plants, there are still ways to garden in the winter.

Front Yard Garden With Plants

Front Yard Garden With Plants

The garden is also a good place to create a “root cellar” of sorts. Plants don’t have to be deep in the soil to be protected from the cold.

Garden With Walkway And Perennials

Garden With Walkway And Perennials

There are lots more options for your garden before you say good-bye to it until next spring.

Backyard Garden With Mulches

Backyard Garden With Mulches

It pays to spend time preparing your garden for winter.

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