As winter wraps Lincolnshire in its frosty embrace, it’s time to get our gardens winter ready. It sounds quite poetic and magical, but in reality, gardening in winter can be a bind. This blog is a guide for homeowners, landlords, and property managers on how to maintain and enjoy their gardens during winter. We’ll explore practical tips and creative ideas to ensure your garden remains a vibrant and enjoyable space even in the chilliest weather.
Protecting Your Plants
Winter in Lincolnshire can be tough on plants. To protect them, start by mulching. A good layer of mulch acts like a blanket, keeping the soil warm and preventing frost from penetrating the roots. Choose organic materials like straw or bark chippings for the best insulation.
Frost-resistant plants are a winter garden’s best friend. Consider planting hardy varieties that can withstand cold temperatures. For your existing plants, use fleece covers or move potted plants to sheltered areas.
Waterlogging is another winter worry. Ensure your garden has adequate drainage to prevent water from pooling around plant roots, which can be fatal in freezing temperatures. Raised beds or adding grit to soil can improve drainage. Lovethegarden discuss how to prevent waterlogging in more detail in their guide ‘Garden Drainage – prevent waterlogging..’ In our opinion, it’s well worth a read; we all know how wet Lincolnshire can be, even when it’s not Winter!
Remember, winter care is all about balance. Overprotecting can sometimes do more harm than good. Make sure your plants acclimatise to cooler temperatures gradually; it helps them develop resistance. If you haven’t already started the winter prep, it’s not too late.
Pruning in winter is vital for the health of many plants and it’s one of ‘those’ jobs that we’re often asked about at the design stage. For many of us it’s a necessary evil but for some, it’s almost cathartic. Whichever side of the fence you’re on, what it does is encourage strong growth in spring, particularly for deciduous trees and shrubs. The key to successful pruning is to make sure the plants are dormant to avoid damaging new growth.
Start by removing dead, diseased, or damaged branches. This not only improves the plant’s appearance but also prevents the spread of diseases. For flowering plants, pruning after blooming ensures they’ll have plenty of time to establish new growth for next season’s flowers.
Don’t be afraid to shape your plants. Pruning can help control the size of a plant and encourage a more desirable form. Use sharp, clean tools to make clean cuts that heal quickly.
Remember, different plants have different pruning needs. Research your specific plant types or consult a professional to avoid over-pruning, which can stress the plants. As an overview, Gardeners World have produced a ‘Year-round garden pruning guide’, which is as good a place to start as any.
Winter is the perfect time to think about garden structures. Structures like pergolas, arbours, and greenhouses not only add aesthetic value but also provide practical benefits in the colder months.
A greenhouse is ideal for protecting tender plants from frost and can be a wonderful place to grow winter vegetables or start seeds early for spring planting. Think about whether adding a small heater for extra protection on particularly cold nights is something within your budget; it will help!
Pergolas and arbours can be decorated with lights and evergreen plants to create a magical winter wonderland in your garden. They offer shelter from winter winds and a pleasant place to sit outside on milder days.
Adding a waterproof cover or side panels to your garden structures can provide extra protection and warmth, allowing you to enjoy your garden even in adverse weather conditions.
Need some inspiration? Take a look at our Services page to see what’s possible.
Winter Wildlife Care
Whether you’re a fan of all creatures great and small or not, your garden can be a sanctuary for wildlife during the harsh winter months. Providing food and water for birds and other creatures is not only a kind gesture but also a great way to encourage biodiversity.
Set up bird feeders with a mix of seeds, nuts, and fat balls. Ensure they’re placed out of reach of predators and refill them regularly. A source of freshwater is also pretty crucial, as the temperatures drop the wet stuff is likely to be frozen.
If you can, try to leave parts of your garden ‘wild’ with leaf piles and logs. These areas offer shelter for insects and small mammals.
The RSPCA shared its top tips on how to care for the creatures that visit your garden during winter in an article in Discover Wildlife.
Creating a Winter-Friendly Garden
A winter-friendly garden is all about creating warmth and light. Adding a fire pit or outdoor fireplace can turn your garden into a cosy gathering place. Surround it with comfortable seating and blankets for those crisp winter evenings. Sounds cosy doesn’t it?
Outdoor lighting can also play a big role in the winter garden. Fairy lights, lanterns, or even strategically placed spotlights can transform your garden into an enchanting evening landscape.
Evergreen plants are essential for maintaining greenery in your garden. Plants like holly, ivy, and conifers provide colour and life even in the bleakest winter days. Need some more ideas? Homes&Gardens offer 20 ways to a beautiful winter backyard in their article by Lucy Searle.
Winter in Lincolnshire doesn’t mean your garden goes into hibernation. After all when you’ve invested in turning your dream into a reality you want to be able to use it all year round. With these tips, you can protect, enjoy, and even enhance your garden during the colder months. Embrace the season and watch as your garden becomes a winter wonderland, full of life and beauty.
As always, if you need any help Get in touch with us today.
How can I protect my plants during winter in Lincolnshire?
To protect your plants in winter, start with mulching using organic materials like straw or bark chippings for insulation. Use fleece covers or move potted plants to sheltered areas for frost protection. Ensure adequate drainage to prevent waterlogging. Gradually acclimatise plants to cooler temperatures to help them develop resistance.
What should I consider when pruning plants in winter?
Prune plants when they are dormant to avoid damaging new growth. Remove dead, diseased, or damaged branches to improve appearance and prevent disease spread. For flowering plants, prune after blooming. Use sharp, clean tools for clean cuts. Research specific pruning needs for each plant type to avoid over-pruning.
How can I make my garden wildlife-friendly in winter?
Set up bird feeders with a mix of seeds, nuts, and fat balls, and ensure they are out of reach of predators. Provide a source of freshwater, as natural sources may freeze. Create sheltered areas for insects and small mammals by leaving parts of your garden ‘wild’ with leaf piles and logs.