Well, as unfortunate as it may be, summer is long gone and with the last few days of autumn still clinging on for dear life, winter is surely on the horizon. And with that, this year’s harvest season is finally coming to an end. But before we make the transition into the chilly winter months, ask yourself this question: “Is my garden prepared for winter?”
Regardless of whether you choose to answer with a simple yes, no, or maybe, here are the 4 most important steps that you should never skip when winterizing your garden!
Clean Out Rotting Or Dead Plants
Paramount to almost anything else you could possibly do to prep your garden for the winter, is removing rotting or dead plants. That means completely digging out every dead or dying plant from the root! Dead or dying plants can be a breeding ground for disease, pests, and invasive funguses. By simply cleaning out those dead or dying sections, you can be sure that your garden will return without issue come springtime. And if you’re sure none of the plants are infected with disease, feel free to bury them right in your garden to add some organic compounds to your soil!
Replenish Your Mulch
Never heard of winter mulching? For years, gardeners have recommended replenishing the mulch in your garden just before the winter hits. Not only will this ensure that your soil doesn’t dry out too much when the first frost hits, but it’ll also protect against invasive weed species, just as it does during the spring, summer, and fall months. In addition, it’ll help to insulate the soil just a bit more to regulate temperatures as the cold weather seeps in. And don’t forget, mulch is an organic product! As it breaks down, it’ll add much-needed winter nutrients to your soil, so it’ll be ready to go for planting season.
Protect Trees & Shrubs From The Elements
If your garden extends beyond some flowers, plants, fruits, and veggies, and into the realm of decorative landscape trees and shrubs, it is imperative that you give them the proper protection that they need to last through the winter. This is especially the case for freshly planted trees and shrubs. By simply surrounding them with a layer of snow fencing or packing straw to ensure that they have enough insulation from the harsh winter climate.
Clean Your Tools!
And last, but certainly not least! At the end of the season, just before you stow away all of your gardening tools and utensils, it is best practice to clean your tools, inspect them for damages, and repair those that may need repairing. Not only will you thank yourself for doing this prior to the start of next year’s planting season, but your new plants will thank you too! Using clean tools are always the best way to ensure that your new plants go into the dirt without any sort of contamination from rust, dust, dirt, etc.
If you follow these four steps, you should be well-prepared to completely winterize your garden! Good luck, and let us know in the comments down below if your garden is prepared for winter!
Title image source