Winter is here!
Now that it is December, it’s time to get serious about the winter season. Most of us have a habit of putting off this weather, but each year we’re reminded of what winter brings: bitter cold temperatures, mounds of snow and high winds. Now is the best time to prep your landscape for the long winter season since it’s fairly dry outside and not too cold.
Why is prepping the landscape for winter so important? It protects the lawn, plants and shrubs from the effects of snow, ice and cold winds. You’ve poured hours upon hours of time, energy and money into your landscape, and there’s no reason to lose your hard work from season to season. A little protection goes a long way in ensuring your landscape will return in the spring.
Below is your ultimate checklist for preparing the landscape for the winter season. By following these steps, you enhance the lifespan of your landscape and reduce headache come spring. You will also be protecting your investment, something that is well deserved.
Your landscape is an investment in your property. It is a room just like your dining room or living room – only it is an outdoor room.
Tips for preparing your landscape for the winter
- Clean your patio furniture and keep it covered or stored away for the season.
- Cut down dead perennials. This can also be a time to divide perennials and plant them elsewhere in your landscape or share with friends.
- Apply an end of season fertilizer – this is the most important application there is. Grass roots will continue to grow during the winter and need nutrients to promote a healthy root system.
- Trim back overgrown branches.
- Aerate the lawn, reseed and apply a fertilizer to promote a healthy lawn come spring.
- All rain and snow drains should point away from the home to avoid foundational problems.
- Planters made from clay or other fragile materials should be moved indoors so they do not crack from freezing and thawing
- Dig up exotic or tropical flower bulbs and tubers, brush off the soil and label them. Store them in a dry, cool bag, netting or box with peat moss. They can be replanted in the spring.
- Remove attached hoses, drain out the water and store them away for the winter to prevent cracking.
- Shut off outdoor faucets inside the house and leave the outside faucet open to drain out any water in them.
- Winterize your sprinkler system by blowing out the water with an air compressor.
- Treat broadleaf evergreens with an anti-desiccant to prevent wind burn and water transpiration.
- Fertilize your shrubs and ornamental trees – they will need a healthy root system over the winter.
- Inspect the outdoor lighting around the property. Clean lenses and replace dead bulbs. Keeping the exterior well-lit is important in preventing slips and falls on icy pavement.
- Cut your lawn short for the winter to prevent leaves from accumulating on the grass and to help prevent fungus from growing under a cover of snow.
While you can handle most of these steps on your own, it doesn’t hurt to have a helping hand. Contact Horizon Landscape if you need assistance getting your home ready for winter!