By Stacy Kershaw
It seems like we went right from Summer to Winter this year. I barely had time to shut off the outside water and store my hoses before the ground froze. While we may have a warm day here and there, we need to prepare our gardens for the inevitable onslaught of messy winter weather.
Here are 5 tips to protect your garden from winter damage:
- Spray your evergreen trees and shrubs with an anti-desiccant like Wilt-Pruf, to prevent dehydration and wilting.
- Turn your compost heap to mix the ingredients and help them decompose. Then cover the bin with a piece of old plywood or an old saucer sled (like me!) to prevent the ingredients from becoming too cold or wet to rot into that black gold we all want.
- Once the snow arrives, and you know it will….shovel or blow snow evenly across planting beds. Avoid putting roadside snow on top of plants–it contains salt that can damage plants.
- If snow accumulates on trees and shrubs, remove it gently! And when ice forms, let it melt naturally or you risk breaking limbs.
- Overwinter perennials in a garage or basement to avoid freezing. But be sure to monitor them to make sure they don’t dry out or start to freeze.
And one more bonus tip: Use the branches from your Christmas tree as protective mulch on delicate shrubs and perennials!