5 Tips To Help Protect Your Plants From the Winter Chill
Posted on:Nov 19, 2019
When Mother Nature sends freezing temps your way, it’s not just uncomfortable for animals and people—it’s also a dangerous time for your plants. You spend all spring and summer tending to them, so don’t waste the effort by ignoring your garden in the winter. With these 5 tips, you’ll create a healthier garden for when spring comes around.
1. Wrap new trees. Young trees need a protective wrapping to keep them from getting sunscald as their bark is less developed than older trees. Take burlap or a light-color corrugated paper and wrap the trunk to shield it from the harsh winter sun.
2. Protect shrubs with a windbreak. Even evergreen shrubs are susceptible to damage from cold temperatures and wind. You may want to construct a windbreak to prevent your shrubs from drying out and turning brown. For this, you can use burlap with wooden stakes, or recycle your Christmas tree branches and lay them over your shrubs. If they cover with more snow, that’s okay—it adds more insulation to protect your plants.
3. Avoid pruning or removing ice from trees/shrubs. If your plants begin to turn brown in the winter, try not to prune them. It’s hard to tell what’s actually dead until spring regrowth. Additionally, if ice forms on your plants’ leaves and branches, try not to beat or shake it off, which can cause twigs and leaves to snap. Instead, prop up branches to prevent breakage.
4. Add more mulch. When the ground freezes, shrubs can’t take in water so the leaves turn brown in a process called “desiccation”. Avoid this by watering shrubs liberally in the late fall and adding more layers of mulch to prevent the ground temperature from fluctuating so greatly. But be careful about which kind you choose. Cedar mulch is the best choice to prevent pests from nesting in it and chewing vulnerable roots.
5. Choose the right plants. This step begins in the planning stages of your garden—plant selection. It’s important to remember which plants best hold up to the winter conditions in your area, then plant away! It will make winter prep much easier.
Lawncare is a yearlong job, but it’s easier when you know how to protect your hard work during the winter months. Follow the above tips to keep your plants in good shape so your lawn is healthy when it warms up again.