Winter brings many things, from holiday gatherings to starting your winter garden plan, including protecting your plants from this time of the year and cold temperatures. If you don’t provide proper protection, you can end up harming your plant’s root systems,
But that’s not all. You can kill all your individual plants if you’re not careful. That’s why you need a plan and an effective way to protect them.
Below we’d like to discuss how to prepare for the upcoming freeze warnings and first frost.
Protecting Outdoor Plants In The Winter
Between freezing temperatures and constant bad weather, winter is the harshest season for your garden. More often than not, if you don’t take matters into your own hands, you’ll have to start your garden all over again once spring starts moving in.
While winter can be difficult for your precious plants particularly outdoor perennials, there are some interventions you can take to make sure they survive harsh weather. Today, we’ll be talking about some ways you can protect your outdoor plants in the winter. Let’s get to it!
Keeping Your Outdoor Plants Safe During Winter
Harsh winter conditions can take a toll on outdoor plants. Constant fluctuating temperatures can cause a lot of cold damage for them, even if they’re hardy to your zone.
Here are some tips on how you can keep them protected from cold weather conditions.
Clear Away Debris
Remove weeds, leaves, and other debris from your garden patch and vegetable patch as temperatures start to drop is an important winter protection tip. When left to pile up, it can harbor winter-hardy pests, fungi, and other diseases that can wreak havoc in your garden once spring comes.
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Just like debris, any decaying plant material left over in your outdoor old and young plants in the winter can harbor diseases.
Remove spent annuals and seasonal vegetables. They won’t grow back in spring so it’s best to pull them up from their roots and out. Add these to your compost pile. For perennials, since they will come back next year, it’s best to prune them. Cut off dead and spent foliage as well as blackened stems.
Add a layer of mulch or wood chips to form a protective layer over your plants’ roots. If you live in a colder area and get heavy snow, make sure to add mulch after the ground freezes to prevent frost heave.
Doing so will also help keep the moist soil temperatures more even for your outdoor hardy plants in the winter months.
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Don’t Expose Them to Harsh Weather Cycles
Constant rising and falling temperatures in winter caused by a hard freeze-thaw cycle can kill perennials. When soil expands and contracts repeatedly, some perennials can lift or heave out of the soil.
This can break off some plant roots and can expose the plants’ crown and roots to cold and drying strong winds.
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Choose Bigger Pots
Containers for outdoor plants should be thick and big enough to handle maintaining temperature throughout winter. The more soil a pot can handle, the better it can insulate roots of a plant during the cold months.
Make sure as well that your outdoor beautiful plants in winter temperatures that are in pots have drainage holes to avoid drowning plants and drainage problems. If poor drainage occurs with wet soils, you can end up with root damage.
You can use plant covers or wrap outdoor plants with sheets of plastic or burlap and secure them with garden wire. This covering helps protect outdoor plants from cold winter weather and freezing winds.
Watering plants in winter may seem counter intuitive, but you still need to do it. Perennials may be in hibernation, but they are not dead. This means you still need water plants to perform metabolic functions during colder months.
The key to watering outdoor garden plants during winter is to do it early in the day when it’s still warmer. The water in the soil can trap heat and keep roots insulated as temperatures drop throughout the day.
Winter doesn’t mean you have to close up shop and go home waiting until warm weather arrives to start all over again. There are many things you can do to protect your winter garden and there are even more plants and small trees you can grow in the winter.
Just follow these tips and your garden will be re-energized and ready to start flourishing again come spring.
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