Top Tips to Prepare Your Garden for Winter
We are enjoying the last of the summer now and to quote Game of Thrones, winter is coming. But that doesn’t mean you should just abandon your garden that you’ve worked to keep nice throughout the spring and the summer. Here are our top tips on what you can do to prepare your garden for the colder months.
1. Autumn Clean
You’ve heard of a spring clean, well get prepared to do an autumn clean. Tidy up your garden, sweep the leaves, rid yourself of any empty pots that are laying abandoned, store or cover your garden furniture depending on what’s needed for the material, wash the decking or the patio and generally clean up the appearance of your garden.
2. Remove Weeds and Dead Plants
Some summer plants aren’t designed to last more than one season and won’t make it through the winter, if you have some of these, remove them and whilst you’re there, be sure to pull up any weeds that may have taken over in the summer months.
3. Prepare your Soil
Most people leave this activity for the spring, but autumn is a great time to dig in soil amendments like manure, compost, and rock phosphate. Doing this now means that you’ve already done the hard work before spring and it also helps to improve drainage in your flower beds before the bad weather hits.
4. Cover Newly Planted Woodland Plants
Create a wigwam style effect out of mesh or fleece to anchor down your plant and keep it protected from extreme weathers. In mild weather, periodically check the rooting zone is not to dry and water the plants if they are and then recover.
5. Clean and Sharpen Tools
This is a job that should be done year-round but can be difficult when you just want to get stuck into your gardening. So, take the autumn and winter period to ensure your tools have been cleaned, sharpened and well-oiled. You should begin by washing the tools to remove dirt. Then, if there is any rust remove with sandpaper or a wire brush. To sharpen hoes and shovels, use a basic mill file. Finally, be sure to rub the surfaces of your tools with an oiled rag, coated in a light machine oil. This helps to protect the metal against oxidisation and extend your tool’s life.
6. General Maintenance
Once all of these initial stages have been achieved, it’s easy to go inside and forget about your garden completely. But from time to time your garden will need to be raked, tidied and looked after to ensure your hard work isn’t undone and to keep it fresh for spring. This is especially necessary if we have a mild winter as you will need to make sure existing plants are well-watered and nourished.
7. Plan Ahead
Thinking ahead to next year is a key stage. There are plenty of steps you can take to prepare for next year’s gardening season. By planning what needs to be done, now, you can ensure the spring and summer run smoothly and that you have a glowing garden all year round.