Once it gets darker and the temperature starts to drop, it is a good idea to prepare your garden for the winter, so that your plants are ready for everything the season has to throw at them. There’s a little bit of garden maintenance you can do to protect your plants through winter and help them last into spring.
Where to Start
- Rake up fallen leaves
No matter if you’re a seasoned gardener or a novice this task is an easy one. Once the Autumn leaves have fallen it’s a good idea to rake them up to prevent paths or decking getting slippery as the leaves start to decompose. Don’t throw the leaves away as they can be composted before going back into your garden to fertilise.
- Wrap up any pots with plants in
To protect the plants roots from the winter frost it is advisable to wrap them in bubble wrap. For the sake of appearance, and for double insulation, you can cover the bubble wrap with hessian sacks. This will protect the roots of the plants and also protect the pots from cracking.
- Leave some of the plants to create a winter habitat for wildlife
Sometimes you need to consider the needs of the wildlife that visits your garden throughout the winter months. The garden is a habitat for insects and so before you cut back all your herbaceous perennials, like ferns, peonies and most grasses, think about leaving some behind to help out the wildlife through the cold months.
- Prune your roses
In November you should cut back your roses by about a third, to prevent wind rock. Wind rock is when the plant is moved around so much by the wind that the fine root hairs, that are responsible for taking up nutrients, break. In January or February, the plants are to be pruned further, cutting them back to about half to create an even round shape. You should also remove any dead or diseased stems.
- Care for your lawns
A little bit of lawn care can go a long way. The lawn should be aerated using a garden fork, and a top dressing can also be added to improve the soil structure and drainage. In Autumn you should think about what you can do to provide the nutrients your lawn needs to see it through winter, this might require a specialist Autumn feed.
- Think about the wildlife
Although this isn’t strictly a tip to help protect your garden, it’s always nice to consider the little visitors you are likely to get through Winter. Birds need as much help as they can get so try leave out feeders and water baths for them. If you’re having garden fires over winter make sure you check there are no hedgehogs or other hibernating creatures nesting in there.
If You Need More Help
There is a lot to think about so you might need a little more help and want to recruit the help of a garden maintenance company. A trained gardener will be able to come to your property and get it ready for the winter months. The gardener will know which plants need pruned, which plants need wrapped up and protected and which will be fine to see themselves through the cold spell. They will also have all the equipment and supplies needed for your garden maintenance and lawn care demands.