12 Tips To Winterize Your Landscape

Winter brings a sense of beauty and childhood memories, of snow angels, snowmen and sleigh rides. It also brings freezing temperatures, bitter winds, heavy snow and vicious ice storms, all of which can damage (or destroy!) an unprotected landscape, especially in a city like Edmonton. But there are several, practical methods you can use to winterize your landscape. Here are 12 tips to help you ensure that your plants thrive and bloom again in spring:

1) Potted plants are often sensitive to frost and freezing temperatures, so the best way to save them is either by bringing them inside, or, if this is not possible due to space limitations, children or pets, using warm blankets as insulation.

2) Before the first freeze around mid-November (not to be confused with the first frost), put down 3 or more inches worth of mulch around your plants to control soil temperate and maintain moisture.

3) Clean up the garden: prune woody perennials, pull out dead annuals, reshape shade trees and, of course, rake up those leaves (if you celebrate Halloween, leaves make awesome stuffing for bright orange pumpkin garbage bags).

4) During winter, it’s best to take advantage of rain and wet snow, allowing it to take over for your watering system. But while you want to shut down the sprinklers until the warm weather returns, if you experience less than 1 inch of rainfall in a 3-week period, be sure to manually water your lawn and gardens, whether you use the hose by hand or turn the sprinkler back on for the day, every 3 weeks.

5) Watering during the winter is an art; you ideally want to do so 8-10 hours before the temperature drops below freezing, in order to avoid damage to the roots.

6) If your sprinkler system is automatic, invest in a rain/freeze sensor. This way you won’t accidentally turn your driveway or sidewalk into a skating rink!

7) Some cities offer rebates on rain/freeze sensors, so be sure to look into this.

8) Sometimes your region may experience droughts or water shortages, so it is important to call the city and verify if and when water restrictions are in effect.

9) Want to really go green and help the save the environment? Install a rain barrel! This is the ultimate recycling system, because rain barrels capture rainwater, so you can reuse it as needed.

10) Audit your irrigation system every February and organize your plans for spring.

11) Resist the urge to prune or fertilize plants late in the fall; otherwise you’ll stimulate new growth, which will only suffer during heavy frost.

12) Prevent insect damage on deciduous trees via the use of dormant oil. But only spray the oil when the temperate is 50 degrees F or higher; never spray it during freezing temperatures.

Need some assistance in organizing your landscape for winter? Give us a call! We offer services in Calgary and Edmonton (and surrounding areas such as Sherwood Park). Our experts at Little Creek Landscaping are here to help you make the right decision for your needs.

Keep bringing your outdoor dreams to life!