If you’re feeling green-fingered (or blue-fingered, rather, it’s freezing out there at the moment!), you’ll love our simple winter gardening tips. From digging over your soil to stop it from becoming water-logged to sprucing up the garden path, although you can put away the mower come winter, there are still plenty of things you can do whilst pottering around the garden on one of those rare winter days illuminated by watery sunshine. You’ll need some garden tools and some thick gloves: it’s going to be cold!
- Turn over the soil, provided that it is not water-logged or frozen: it’ll loosen up weeds, stones and anything else that could potentially cause the soil to become water-logged which means that your plants, flowers and ferns won’t grow as well come springtime.
- Dig a trial patch (again, when it isn’t wet or super cold) in your lawn (where no-one can see) and check for things like thatch, moss and damp. That way, you can start weeding, feeding and mowing to get your lawn back to its lush green best.
- Prune back your shrubs by approximately 1/3 if they’re particularly large, making sure that strands from different plants or trees do not overlap each other.
- Clean up the garden path – grab a stiff sweeping brush and get rid of dead leaves and any accumulated dirt, stones, sticks and weeds. If the path is particularly grubby, give it a good hose down and then add a thin layer of coloured gravel between paving stones and around the edge of the path to jazz it up a bit. Plus, the gravel will help to prevent weeds from coming up in the spring.
- Protect tender plants and herbs from frost either by bringing them indoors – into a greenhouse or inside your home before the frost sets in, or by covering them with fleece/a cloche in situ. Many people also cover the tender ends of pruned plants with plastic to protect roots from moss and rot, but whether you choose to do this really depends on how hardy your plants are.
- Planting native and local trees and shrubs will not only help to maintain the greenery in your local area, but it’ll provide plenty of food and shelter for local wildlife – particularly plants with lots of very thin stalks and berries.
- Provide water stops for birds by ensuring frost-free birdbaths – pop a floating ball on top and it should stop the water from freezing. Help them to forage by creating piles of leaves in borders or by leaving a small patch of grass uncut to attract bugs and wildlife. You could even make a bug hotel – arrange a few logs in a pile, or build a hedgehog stop. Attracting local wildlife to your garden will help with pest control and if you’re savvy about the plants you choose, they’ll work with your garden helpers to shield your petunias and your tomatoes from those nasty garden bugs.
Source: Country File