Protecting your Garden for Winter

The Irish writer George Bernard Shaw once said: ‘England and America are two countries divided by a common language’.

I have learned that lesson well since living on this side of the pond but what I’ve learned is to be cautious and never assume I know what’s being said.

Last week, for example, I was watching the neighboring farmers dig long trenches and lay big hoses all across his fields. I asked my British neighbor if he knew what the hoses were for.

Yes, he said, for irrigation.

I then asked where he would be getting the water from to use to irrigate.

Well, rain, of course, said my neighbor.

I won’t go into details with the remainder of the conversation, which was rather lengthy, until I realized that when my neighbor said ‘irrigation’ he actually meant ‘drainage’. The farmer was draining the fields of excess rainwater.

I explained that, to me, irrigation meant adding water and drainage meant removing water.

I received a blank look…. To the British irrigation covered both.

I tell you this because to me, in my earlier days, a garden was a place where one grew vegetables. A lawn is the place in front of a house with grass. To many other English speakers the garden is the entire space surrounding a house.

Here are tips to protect that green space from the ravages of winter. It doesn’t mention animals (bunnies) chewing the bark off trees but I suspect a tree wrap would solve that problem. It also doesn’t cover vegetables……

5 Tips to Protecting Your Garden During the Winter

A garden is a gem. It, in its full glory, beautifies your home. Your lawn also improves the value of your property and its curb appeal. More so, the landscape makes your outdoor space exciting and even relaxing to occupy.

As if that is not enough, beautified gardens improve one’s mood. In short, a well-manicured lawn can make your premise lively and lovely and give off the perception of having a nice home. Unfortunately, the winter cold can turn your once admirable garden into a mess if you are not careful.

Remember, the freezing temperatures have a tendency to reduce your once-thriving plant population to a pile of trash. Even worse, winter can leave the landscape bare and thus prone to erosion. Surprisingly, you can use the following techniques to protect your investment from cold temperatures and frightful weather. They are as follows:

1)            Mulching

Mulching is advantageous for many reasons. One, it reduces weed growth. Additionally, the approach prevents the moisture in the soil from evaporating into the atmosphere when the sun shines. Moreover, you do not have to worry about watering the garden now and then.

However, do you know that mulching has another hidden benefit? Well, gardening experts have determined that mulching can protect your plants from a freeze during winter. All you need is a sizable amount of organic matter to cover the root system.

2)            Watering the Plants

Plants become dormant during winter because of the extreme cold temperatures. Some even dry and die off because they cannot absorb the freezing water molecules from the soil. It is in light of the above that you must water the garden at least once a month. After all, dormant plants also need moisture for the root system to thrive.

Photo by Phil Hearing on Unsplash

3)            Covering Thin Trees With Trunk Wrap

Did you know that trees with smooth and thin barks are vulnerable to injury as well? Yes, they are, and they suffer from sunscald. For your information, sunscald is a condition that affects the southwest section of the trunk when the sun shines in the evening.

It makes vulnerable trunk parts sick and weak. Anyhow, the condition is easy to correct. You only need to tie a trunk wrap around the affected regions during winter.

However, staking must end during spring. Also, remove any strings and ties from the trunk. They might kill the tree in the end.

Photo by Vivint Solar on Unsplash

4)            Adding Anti-Desiccants to the Foliage

Let us face it. Landscaping your lawn is expensive. In actuality, most homeowners spend a fortune on the same. Sadly, they cannot evade the harsh winter temperatures.

It is in light of the above that you need to apply an anti-desiccant to green foliage. Remember, the compounds provide a protective coat around the plant. They then reduce the amount of moisture lost from the vegetation to the environment.

5)            Eliminating Contaminated Manure From the Mix

Plants require nutrients for growth in all seasons. However, not all are perfect for your lawn. Therefore, you must find uncontaminated organic matter to improve the soil. After all, doing so gives your plants a head start when springtime comes.

4 thoughts on “Protecting your Garden for Winter”

    • I am constantly amazed by the word differences. And it’s always interesting explaining it to a French person.. Simple things… I make a decision; Brit’s take a decision. I have yet to figure out where they take it….

  1. I encountered a similar issue in Costa Rica as a builder.
    The word for level (flat) and the word for plum (vertical) were both the same ‘nivel’.
    My workers could not understand why English needed two words for the same thing.

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