Winter Landscape Tips

With the “official” start of winter upon us on December 21, your landscape is probably looking a little drab and just like how you used the top 10 summer gardening tips to protect your garden its high time you do the same with your garden for the winter. To combat the blues, brighten things up indoors with fresh flowers, a new houseplant or an orchid. Remember to save some energy for maintenance, winterizing and houseplant care because there is a lot to do even during the winter months!

During this winter gardening downtime you can always take measures to prolong the life of your tools, mower, hoses and outdoor pipes. Clean tools with a wire brush, then have them sharpened by dropping them off at Moana Nursery. Tune up your lawn mower; run the engine dry and replace the oil and air filter (there are more tips provided by the MyLawnCare professional service for those interested). If the blades need sharpening or other repairs are needed, take it to the shop during this slow season so it’s ready when you need it in the spring. A gardening service in your area will help you make proper design solutions; your tools will come in handy.

  • If you haven’t already done so, disconnect nozzles from hoses, and hoses from their spigots.  Stretch them out to drain all water before storing them, preferably under cover or in the garage, for the winter. Put pipe wrap or other protection around your outdoor spigots to prevent freezing.
  • Straighten up your utility area/garden shed for a fresh start in the spring; store pesticides and other hazardous materials in a locked cupboard out of reach of children.
  • Though compost doesn’t need as much attention now, you compost pile will benefit from an occasional turning if it’s not frozen.
  • Remember that if you can dig, you can plant. If the ground isn’t frozen solid, trees and shrubs planted now will preserve important energy over the winter. Follow planting instructions and be sure to water monthly throughout the winter if there has been no snow or rainfall and when the ground is not frozen.
  • Roses, strawberry plants and perennials will be grateful for a layer of mulch once the ground has frozen to an inch deep.
  • If you did not apply dormant spray in November, give plants and deciduous trees an application when weather permits this month — daytime temps of 45 degrees, no wind and dry for 48 hours. Make a second application in late January when the weather permits.
  • Give your plants a face wash. For glossy-leafed plants such as philodendrons, palms and rubber plants, with socks or gloves on both hands (using one for support underneath), gently wipe their leaves to unclog pores.  Place other types of plants in a sink and spray them with room-temperature water or group them in the shower.
  • While your heater is working overtime this winter, give plants some extra moisture by layering trays with regularly moistened pebbles, setting pots on top; grouping them closely also helps.  Make sure the pots do not touch the water.
This entry was posted on Thursday, December 16th, 2010 at 2:08 am and is filed under Children and Gardening, Winter Gardening. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.