Winter gardening?! Yes, it exists, and we’re here to inspire you to get prepared! We know you spend spring and summer reveling in that lush, fruitful garden, only to have October and its cold temperatures sweep in and dry everything out. But autumn doesn’t have to be the death of your hard work! We’ve got a short list of tips and tricks, below, that will deliver a more beautiful, bountiful garden with the advent of spring.
- Remove annuals, vegetable plants, weeds and debris. Pests and diseases love to feed off dead plant material, so don’t give them the opportunity to infect the rest of your garden. Remove those plants completely – roots and all – they’ll make great toppers to your compost pile.
- Keep your grass in good shape by prepping it for the colder, drier months ahead. Start by giving your lawn a closely-cropped cut, then follow these steps to tuck your yard in for a long winter’s nap.
- If you’ve planted herbs in your garden, now is the perfect time to harvest them – all of them. Dry them, freeze them or use them now when they’re fresh. You’ll have enough delicious herbs to lend flavor to all those autumn and winter soups, casseroles and stews.
- Wrap up your trees, especially newer ones, to protect them from pests that would like to sink their teeth into your precious shade-makers. Wrap the trunks with chicken wire to keep rodents at bay.
- Evergreens provide lovely shade all summer long, so you’ll want to protect their exposed, broad leaves that can dry out from harsh winter wind and sun. A burlap screen or shade cloth will safeguard your precious arbors and shrubs.
- If you won’t be using your sprinkler system or hose this winter, let the water drain from the mechanism or bring it indoors to prevent frost damage.
- Spread mulch around the base of trees and shrubs to blanket your plants from the cold and snow. The wood chips will insulate the root system in the fall and winter and keep the area cool come spring and summer.