With the start of meteorological winter around the corner (the season officially begins on December 1st), homeowners should be thinking about winterising their gardens.
It’s natural to want to hibernate indoors on cold and stormy days, but even if you’re not out gardening there is still plenty to be done ahead of the winter months to protect your garden. Doing some much-needed prep will help your garden withstand the elements, and will help to maintain all of the hard work you’ve put into keeping your beautifully manicured garden healthy.
Here, we’ve compiled our top tips for getting your garden in tip top winter condition…
Start with little jobs
Firstly, take a look around your garden and get started with some basic seasonal maintenance. As soon as leaves start falling, it’s a good idea to invest in some compost bags and to start clearing them up before they have a chance to collect in a pile and get wet, (and therefore become heavier to move and clear away). If you have summer bulbs planted, you can remove these and store them away to replant for next year. Any plants remaining in place but are sensitive to frost and/or colder climes should be covered with netting.
Watch your water
If you have any water features in place, you should make sure these are taken care of to reduce the chances of frozen, bursting pipes. Switch off the water source to ensure there’s no water reaching any taps, ponds, fountains or any other feature. You may also want to install a pond heater, which can help prevent freezing in the winter months.
Put down some autumn mulch
Generally speaking, soil hasn’t yet frozen in autumn, meaning it’s a great time to put down some organic mulch. This will help keep to keep heat and moisture under the surface, and once it freezes over, it will help to keep pests and wildlife above the surface. It can also act as a barrier against winter weeds, whilst protecting plant roots from frost.
Give your garden grounds some TLC
From the lawn to the flowerbeds, the ground in your garden could use some care ahead of the colder months. You can add organic matter, remove weeds, tidy up flowerbeds, aerate to allow air into the roots, and put down lawn food to give your grass a healthful boost.
Think of the winter wildlife
Finally, if you fancy helping wildlife through the colder months, why not make your garden a winter haven for birds and other creatures? You can put in a bird feeder, or leave piles of leaves intact as they can make a nice warm spot for toads and newts. You should also exercise caution when burning compost, as many animals can use heaps for shelter during the wintertime.