Although gardening is a beloved activity, due to our hectic lifestyles, not everyone has the time to beautify their gardens. So, how can we provide the care and attention our gardens need to survive the winter?

The majority will mow their lawns for the last time in October or November and then let their gardens survive the chilly winter on their own. However, by spending a little more time preparing for colder weather, it will look its best in spring, and with careful planting, you can have a green garden all year long. 

Tips to help you prepare your garden for winter

Protect your plants

For winter protection, move any pots containing delicate plants like Agapanthus, Cannas, or palms into a greenhouse or conservatory. To shield them from the frost, cover the trunks of any palm trees that are buried with horticultural fleece and place a thick layer of bark mulch around the base of any other delicate species, such as Japanese maples.

Trim your borders

When annuals have completed blooming and herbaceous perennials in your borders start to fall back, prune them back to the ground. Additionally, it is worthwhile to thoroughly clean up your borders by getting rid of any weeds, dead foliage, and leaves.

Trim the edges of your lawn and remove any wasted stems from perennials but retain any plants that have attractive seed heads since they look amazing when they are frozen. Similarly, wait until late February to prune deciduous grasses because the fallen foliage also shields the plant’s crown. 

Fix garden structures

The best time to perform any necessary repairs on your greenhouse, garden shed, or fencing is right after your trees, borders, and structural shrubs have been pruned back. Pay close attention to any signs of wood rot or infestations. If after close inspection it appears that your garden structure is a little beyond repair, now would be a good time to consider installing a new summer house too.

Pay close attention to trees and vegetation

To improve the overall shape of your structural shrubs, prune any stray branches, and if necessary, give your hedges one last trim before the first frost. Remove the dead or damaged branches to stop the stems from rubbing against one another and developing wounds or abnormalities.

Clean up ponds and water features

Try to avoid having leaves accumulate in your pond or water feature by temporarily covering it with a net during late autumn. This is the best time to clean your pond if it hasn’t been cleaned in a while and is starting to appear murky. If you have fish in the pond, try to be watchful during frosts to prevent the water’s surface from freezing completely; even just keeping a ball ready to float on the surface will work. 

Clean roads and pavement

Once the trees have shed their leaves, clean up all the leaves and debris (it’s less demanding while things are still dry). Before the first frost, it’s also practical to thoroughly clean your pavement with a brush and soapy water so that it will be less greasy and safer throughout the winter months. Alternately, if you have a pressure washer, a good blast will do the trick.

Winter is a somewhat low-activity season for the garden, making it the perfect opportunity to complete any work you may have put off. Gardeners with experience are also aware that, despite the end of the growing season, there is still plenty of work to be done and that spring is just a few months away. Anything that is done now will lessen the burden of work afterwards.

It’s really tempting to tear everything out and till or churn the earth at the end of the season when things begin to die and look depressing. However, turning over your soil exposes all the beneficial components to the chilly winter weather. 

Look out for mistakes like this and use the tips listed above to get your garden in good winter shape.