7 Tips to Protect Your Yard from the Cold Harsh Winter
It’s that time of year again – the time when the leaves start falling off trees, everything tastes like pumpkin, and it’s time to prepare your yard for winter. Months of freezing cold and snow can damage and sometimes kill plants if not properly taken care of. Here are seven tips to help you better protect your yard this winter.
Certain plants can withstand winter and certain plants cannot. Before digging up your yard and planting whatever you want, make sure your choice of flora will be able to withstand your climate. If you really want something not made for winter, it’s doable, just know you will have to put in a little more work come wintertime.
Grow Strong Plants
Whether your yard survives the winter often depends on the spring and summer. If you nourish your plants during the warm months they will be better prepared to handle the cold. Preparing for winter should start in the spring.
After the flowers have browned and the leaves have fallen off, cut back branches of perennials, roses and some shrubbery. Tall branches left in the snow can freeze all the way down to the roots, permanently killing the plant. Cut everything low to the ground except for shrubs that flower on old wood. If you are not sure how low to cut your shrubbery, research your plant type or call an arborist for a professional opinion.
The ground actually holds a lot of warmth. Underground is much warmer than the outside air. To save plants’ roots and crowns, cover the ground with 6”-8” natural insulation such as dry leaves or straw. This will help keep the warmth in all year long.
Cover Trunks of Trees
Wrap the trunks of young and weaker trees with burlap. This will help keep wind, sun and snow from doing too much damage. Call an arborist like those from Arborcare Tree Serviceto help you know the best techniques and materials to use.
Some plants, especially ones not native to cold climates, may need special coverings to survive. You can use wood posts and screens to shield plants from snow and wind. A teepee formation works well, especially over individual plants.
Before the first freeze, soak the ground beneath your plants. Roots have a harder time pulling in water when cold so giving them a good, hearty drink beforehand will go a long way.
Protecting your plants in winter is not impossible. A well prepared yard in the fall can lead to a much healthier garden come spring.