In winter, garden plants doze under a blanket of snow – they are at rest. Accordingly, there is little work in the garden. However, from time to time we should check how the plants winter, improve their covers and scoop up the excess snow from them.
The winter dormancy period should not be considered as a break in gardening. In winter, the garden does not sleep, but only dozes. It cannot be left alone. It requires our attention even when it is covered with snow.
Remove excess snow
Systematically, excess snow should be removed from columnar conifers. The abundant snow cover can turn into ice and it can break off branches and deform the shrubs. An additional protection against permanent damage to plants is the ligation of their branches.
Trim the trees
The best period of forming deciduous tree crowns is autumn and winter, from November to March, but they can be shaped all year round (except for maple , hornbeam or birch , which “cry” after pruning, so they are formed from June to September).
In winter, you can also prune conifers (they can also be pruned all year round) and their wounds are not protected if they are resinous species. At the end of February, it is worth making a maintenance pruning of trees and shrubs – remove damaged, sick and dead shoots.
Take care of the lawn
You should avoid strolling on the grass in the winter. This may cause blades of grass to break or damage the soil structure (as a result, the turf will be damaged next season). It is also worth remembering not to cover the lawn with snow collected from the garden paths.
Paint the trunks white
In order to avoid wounds on tree trunks, bleaching should be carried out to prevent bark cracking due to temperature changes and strong sunlight. It is best to whitewash tree trunks at the end of January, when the temperature rises above zero.
Transplant the Christmas tree into the garden
Want to plant a Christmas tree in the garden . For this purpose, spruce, fir or pine trees are placed in a bright, cool room (temperature approx. 10 ° C). They must not be exposed outside, as they will get cold quickly. In addition, they should be watered regularly (until spring). The trees are planted in the garden in spring (late March, April), when the soil is thawing.
Often, however, Christmas trees do not take root in the garden and dry up. This is usually due to the low absorption area of the roots. Sellers are pruning the already extensive root system of a 1.5-2 meter tree to be planted in a pot.
Take care of potted plants
Indoor flowers also have a dormant period in winter. We water them moderately and do not fertilize. It is best to move them to the brightest place. Species that prefer moisture – we sprinkle. At the end of February, we can start transplanting indoor plants into larger containers with fresh soil.
Cultivate the pond
The problem for fish in winter is the lack of oxygen, because the water under the surface of the ice does not come into contact with the air. To ensure gas exchange in the ice-bound tank, it is worth using a polystyrene airhole with a heater that turns on during severe frosts. The traditional method of ensuring gas exchange in the tank is to melt the ice in several places with hot water (do not smash it with any sharp tools). A piece of polystyrene or a bundle of straw is placed in the resulting hole.
Feed the birds
Birds often come close to our homes because they know very well that they can expect a “free cafeteria”. If we decide to feed the birds in the winter – let’s do it regularly. Birds quickly get used to such a food source and longer breaks in feeding them may be dangerous for them. Unfortunately, when feeding birds, we make many mistakes, which often do more harm than good, so let’s follow the rule – it is better not to feed the birds at all than to do it wrong!
Watch out for dangerous early spring
The sun’s rays increase water evaporation, which makes the plant vulnerable to drying out. Drought is much more dangerous than frost. The critical moment is in the early spring, when it gets warm and the soil is still frozen. Then we have to water conifers and other evergreen plants abundantly so that the ice melts as quickly as possible and the roots can take up the water. A good protection for evergreen plants is shading (with shade or white agrotextile) from the south and west. These materials let some of the sun’s rays through and weaken strong and frosty winds.
Take the time to plan your garden
Winter is the perfect time to plan future plantings or remodel an existing garden . Then it is worth using your free time to browse through gardening books and guides. Finding inspiration on the internet is extremely helpful. Using a computer, you can virtually “visit” the most beautiful gardens in the world.