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Winter gardening tips

15-Jun-2020

 

How should you prepare for Winter?

The growing season is long gone and the ground is still frozen which means winter is usually a quiet time for gardeners but there are plenty of essential jobs to keep you busy and help you prepare for the fast approaching growing season. Winter preparation is important if you want your outdoor space to have the best chance of thriving in the spring.

 

 

Clear dead or diseased plants and weeds

Over the autumn months, your plants and weeds will likely have died and there will be dead leaves from surrounding plants and trees everywhere. It can be tempting to leave these in place over the winter but they provide the perfect place for pests such as slugs and snails to thrive and they’ll still be there when you’re trying to plant your seedlings in the spring. In addition, other pests can overwinter in this debris so clearing your flower beds in the winter will prevent them from staying and will mean that the winter weather and predators can keep them in check naturally.

The best thing is, you can compost this dead material and use it in the spring and summer to feed your new plants. Winter is also a good time of year to clear weeds and self-seeders. Make sure you dig them and pull them up to remove as much of the stems and roots as possible to prevent them from regrowing in the spring.

 

Prepare the soil for spring

Once clear, make sure you dig over your empty borders and dig in compost, and mulch sot that the soil’s ready for spring.

 

Protect your plants

You might have already done this in the autumn months but, before the winter freeze properly kicks in, you’ll need to remove them from your garden and put them in your greenhouse or inside to keep them warm until summer rolls around again.

 

Pruning

During the winter, deciduous trees rest which makes it the perfect time of year to prune them. They will benefit from being pruned as it helps to stimulate new growth in the spring and summer. Removing dead flowers from your plants will help to encourage new growth when the weather warms up. This helps plants to put their energy into new growth rather than trying to maintain old, tired flowers.

 

 

Look after birds

When the ground freezes over, many species of birds find it difficult to find food so leave a bird feeder and seed out in your garden will really help them out. It will also provide hours of enjoyment watching them from your window when all of your colourful plants have died back.

 

Plant bare root trees and shrubs

From ornamental shrubs to fruit trees, now is the perfect time to plant them. At this time of year, they’re dormant and can be bought with bare roots which is a cheaper option. In addition, many online plant providers sell them in this way anyway. Once they have arrived, make sure you plant them as soon as possible.

 

Plant bulbs

Flowers such as tulips and daffodils are great to plant at this time of year. The bulbs will lay dormant until they’re ready to push through the soil in the spring. Planting them now will mean you can enjoy them during the early spring months before the rest of your garden starts to thrive.

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