Winter garden guide
Prepare now to reap the rewards in spring.
Prepare the potsMove potted plants to a more protected location to protect them from the colder weather. Construct frames around plants that are likely to be damaged by the cold and throw some cloth or plastic over them of an evening – remember to remove it during the day so the plants can soak up the sun.
Tackle the big jobs
The cooler conditions mean you can tackle some bigger tasks that are sure to raise a sweat.
Laying a new path, digging a pond or landscaping are large jobs so get started on these jobs early so you can enjoy the fruits of your labour when your garden blooms in spring.
Aerate the lawn
Most lawn varieties lie dormant during winter months so they require extra TLC to look their best in spring.
Watch for signs of waterlogging on your lawn over winter, especially after heavy rain. Use a pitchfork or hire a lawn aerator to break up compacted soil, allow excess water drain and provide oxygen to the soil.
Raise your lawnmower height as longer blades of grass will protect your lawn from frost. Mow with the catcher on so your lawn isn’t covered in grass clippings that can reduce photosynthesis and cause fungal problems.
Prune and tidy
Many plants should be pruned in the winter months while they’re dormant. Pruning in winter encourages flower and fruit, stops disease and encourages new growth.
While plants are bare you can easily remove dead or crowded growth.
Prune deciduous fruit and ornamental trees or shrubs as well as cutting back roses and herbaceous perennials.
Don’t prune plants that flower in spring until after they bloom.
Dig the veggie garden
Winter can be a great time to dig a new veggie garden.
Hardy vegetables such as leeks, beetroot, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, onions and kale thrive in cooler weather, plus you can brag that your hearty winter vegetable soup was made completely from scratch.
Planting marigolds, lupins, pansies, violas, verbena and lavender around your veggies will give your garden some much-needed colour and attract insects to help with pollination.