How to Prepare Your Garden for Winter
Keeping your garden healthy and alive over winter is mostly a matter of cleaning up and covering up. Some plants aren’t made to withstand the winter frosts and freezing temperatures, but those that are will often enter a state of dormancy over the colder months. Clear out the blackened stems and foliage of annual flowers and vegetables to prevent the possibility of their harbouring disease and insect eggs over the winter.
We have put together a brief guide detailing how to prepare your garden for the winter months, saving your hard work that has been put in all year.
- Bulbs – When preparing bulbs for winter, you need to be careful to cover the area that they are planted in carefully. A good material to use is evergreen boughs, this stops the soil from shutting and cracking during the winter. If you do not look after the area correctly plants, especially small, shallowly planted bulbs, can be heaved to the surface.
- Trees – It is important to protect the tender bark of young trees from creepy crawlies and the cold weather by wrapping stems or trunks with wire or commercial tree-guard products. Screen evergreens, particularly exposed broad-leaved types, from drying winds and sun by setting up burlap screens or shade cloth shelters.
- Roses – Roses require a little bit of extra attention when preparing them for the winter than other plants. It is important to stop fertilising them in the late summer, making their final feeding two months before you expect the first frost. Refrain from pruning after the last feed as well. Mulch the roses just before the first hard frost of the season, once the ground has frozen, add more mulch to the base of the roses to insulate the roots and stem.
- Vegetables – Keep polyspun garden fabric handy to cover summer crops such as beans and peppers if an early frost threatens. Harvest crops such as pumpkins, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and onions. Brussel sprouts, carrots, and other root vegetables can stay on the ground through light frosts. Clean up all the plant debris, as it could harbour insect eggs and disease which could potentially ruin your future crops. Add mulch or compost to the area over the winter to protect the soil.