Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Little Bits Of Gardening I'm Doing Over Winter

December isn’t exactly the perfect time for gardening! It’s cold, the winds are getting up, and the dark nights are closing in. Nevertheless, I’ve taken the time to prepare my garden for the coldest months of January and February. Leaving your garden to fend for itself over the winter isn’t ideal. The weather will cause damage to your lawn, your wooden structures, and your plants.

You only need to take a few minutes each week to tidy things up, and keep the garden in check. When those warmer months do begin to appear, your garden will still be in a good shape. Left alone, and you’ll have a lot of work to do when Spring comes around.

Tidy the borders - Your flowers will begin to suffer over the winter. Many will have already died by this point in December. For any that are holding on, it’s time to go around and dead-head them. It’s neater, and better for their future growth. Remove any flowers that entirely seasonal, and keep things nice and trim. It’s easy to let shrubs and borders become unruly over winter. A five minute trim will keep them in shape.

Lawn maintenance - It’s hard to fight against the overwhelming power of nature! The cold frost will dry out the soil, and turn your lush green grass to brown patches. But, there are a few things you can do to preserve its health. I like to make deep holes to give it some aeration, and dig small irrigation lines to help drainage. Keep the weeds at bay, and don’t let their roots take hold either.

Leaf mould - During Autumn, any trees will have shed their leaves, creating a mess in your garden! If your outdoor space is anything like mine, then those leaves stayed wet, and clung to the patios. Rather than getting rid of them completely, I like to turn them into leaf mould. It’s a natural compost, which will act as an organic fertilizer in a year or two.

Repair fence posts - During the winter, you can expect the wind to pick up significant. We’ve already had some intense storms and weather warnings this December. These winds will weaken your fences, potentially dragging them out of their posts. I used a Dingo Digger hire to re-dig the post holes, making it much stronger. Now, my fences can withstand those harsh winds!

Plant evergreens - Even during the winter, I like to see my garden blooming. You don’t have to accept a grey, infertile back garden in December! There are plenty of evergreen plants and flowers that will bring your garden to life.

Clean and store garden equipment - Left out over winter, your garden equipment becomes a magnet for rust. With moisture in the air, rain, and cold, they’ll take a beating. Before December, I took the opportunity to clean them all thoroughly. Now they’re stored away until I need them all again.

I’m sure you don’t relish the job of gardening in the cold months, but it is worth it! When spring comes around, you’ll have a lot less work to do.