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Tips to Get Your Garden Ready for Winter

mcknightwinterIf you read my story yesterday – the one about the now very popular Apple Cinnamon Muffins I treated myself with – you will already know that it was an absolutely beautiful morning in Ontario. After I had my muffin and coffee, I took a little walk into my garden. Can you believe I still have some beautiful blooms in there? So I took pictures you can look at and it also made me think that I should send your way a few tips ads to what I think is a good odea to remember to get done before the cold weather and snow arrive:

Here are my 10 Tips to Get Your Garden Ready for Winter:

  1. This is actually a great time to transplant small tree and shrubs if you need to. It is fine to do it when the leaves turned colour and started to fall.
  2. It is also a good time to plant new trees and shrubs – there is still time before the ground freezes deep enough to do manage to the roots.
  3. You will want to put plastic or wire mesh around new trees or shrubs to protect them from hungry animals – like rabbits or mice. When you do that, make the protective covers high enough so that it reaches above the snow line.
  4. As far as perennials go – it is up to you whether or not you cut back the dying foliage. I prefer to leave it, since I think it offers protection to new growths in early spring when you can see unexpected frost or spring snow falls that could do some damage. The other things that it does is feed hungry birds. But – some people prefer to have their garden all nice and clean in the spring – so it is your call!
  5. The one things you don’t want to do is cut roses back before the winter – leave them the way they are, just hill over the root system to prevent frost damage. In the spring, keep checking where new growth is and cut parts of the plant that have been damaged over the winter.
  6. You will also need to make sure that your shrubs and trees have a good storage of water . That means watering them until the ground freezes. This is especially important for newly planted ones – since evergreens don’t lose their “leaves”, they continue to give off water vapours through the winter months.
  7. It is a good idea to do “once over” on your flowerbeds – pulling out all the weeds. Make sure you don’t throw them into your composter – you would have them sprouting again when you use the compost next spring! You can pull out all plant remains and materials from your vegetable garden and put those into your composter.
  8. If you have leaves you don’t know what to do with, consider shredding them and using them for mulch on your flower beds. You can add some to your composter as well – it will take a season or so until they make compost, but it will be the best organic treat for your garden soil! To shred the leaves, you can just run a lawnmover over them to break them up – they will compost better.
  9. Speaking of leaves – you will want to rake them off your lawn for sure. If you don’t, they will smother your grass.
  10. And speaking of grass – not only is this the perfect time to put some winter fertilizer on. It is also time to do the final cutting. If you leave the grass long, it will likely cause some low-temperature fungi.

Hope you enjoyed reading this and as mentioned at the beginning of this article – here are few pictures I took yesterday and of course – few comments as well:

This gorgeous mum is adoring the entrance to my garden - right at the start of stone garden path. I got this plant for my birthday last April and just stuck it into the ground when it finished blooming indoors.

This gorgeous mum is adoring the entrance to my garden - right at the start of stone garden path. I got this plant for my birthday last April and just stuck it into the ground when it finished blooming indoors.

Yes - it is a rose in full bloom! And about 5 new buds that will more than likely not have enough warmth to open this year :-(. This rosebush is in the front my our house and has been there for about 12 years, coming back beatifully each year.y

Yes - it is a rose in full bloom! And about 5 new buds that will more than likely not have enough warmth to open this year :-(. This rosebush is in the front my our house and has been there for about 12 years, coming back beatifully each year.

This huge planter with fall mum and ornamental grass is also in front of our house - almost finished blooming but still being a great decoration!

This huge planter with fall mum and ornamental grass is also in front of our house - almost finished blooming but still being a great decoration!

This little shrub has beautiful burgundy leaves all your round and this is the first year it showed some berries after the leaves fell off. It give a great contrast colour to my flower bed and I am sure it will look great when snow covers the ground!

This little shrub has beautiful burgundy leaves all your round and this is the first year it showed some berries after the leaves fell off. It give a great contrast colour to my flower bed and I am sure it will look great when snow covers the ground!

This gorgeous organcew bloom is adoring climber rose I have just planted last year - it will make for a great picture if it last til the snow fall!Stay tuned....

This gorgeous organcew bloom is adoring climber rose I have just planted last year - it will make for a great picture if it last til the snow fall!Stay tuned....

This is a shocker for me - white clematis blooming in November after we already had some frost! I am loving it becuase it is right next to my patio doors and I get to see it every day! Please pretty flower - stay awhile!

This is a shocker for me - white clematis blooming in November after we already had some frost! I am loving it becuase it is right next to my patio doors and I get to see it every day! Please pretty flower - stay awhile!

I will be looking forward to your comments, suggestions and experiences – your input is always very much appreciated!

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About the author

Hanna Trafford

Hanna is the mother of two grown sons Dan and Dusan Nedelko, and is also the Grandmother to Jax, Cohen and Mila. She is the lead editor of Mama Knows and is hoping to create an exchange of communications with other grandmothers, mothers and daughters - giving everyone the opportunity to learn and share about everything that is "Mama"

2 comments
Gary - November 20, 2009

For those who have a large enough harvest, consider sharing some of it with your neighbors in need.

People who need to use food banks/food pantries/food shelves to help feed their families (about 1 out of 6 Americans) almost never have the opportunity to get fresh produce.

You can help… visit http://www.AmpleHarvest.org to find a neighborhood food pantry eager for your garden bounty.

Help your community by reaching into your backyard instead of your back pocket.

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