The bountiful harvest seasons may be over, but as winter begins to bite, there is still work to be done in the garden.
Growth slows down as the temperature drops, but these frigid weeks are a great time to prepare the spring-flowering bulbs and early hardy vegetables.
However, it can be difficult to get it right during the humid and darker months.
Fortunately, the experts at Express gardening highlighted common winter gardening mistakes that could ruin next year’s flowers and crops.
Chris Bonnett said: “How we take care of our garden all winter is really important for the following spring when our gardens are ready to go back to them.”
“It’s really easy to make mistakes all this time without even realizing it!”
Common winter gardening mistakes
If you are looking for a colorful and fruitful spring, summer and fall next year, avoid these mistakes:
- During fertilization
- Do not add mulch
- Do not move crops
- Forgetting to cover crops
Bonnett said: “By pointing out these mistakes, we hope it will help people across the country make sure their gardens are in top shape for spring!”
Fertilization and watering
“One of the biggest mistakes people make is thinking that fertilizer and a regular watering cycle will help,” says Bennett.
It can actually do more harm than good. Winter is when your outdoor plants need to rest and by fertilizing during a period of poor growth the plant can die.
Overwatering can also lead to plant death, as waterlogged conditions can lead to your beloved plants drowning or root rot development.
Your most sensitive garden plants will benefit from a good mulch on their exposed roots. This provides extra heat and can suppress winter weeds, so can be useful in a border.
Mulch can be made from any dead or decaying organic material, such as cut grass, bark, or even fallen fall leaves. Leaf mulch is perfect for laying over exposed soil and turns into a nitrogen-rich food as it breaks down.
Displacement of crops
Crops that still grow in winter should be moved either indoors to a greenhouse if possible, or to a more sheltered area of your garden.
These crops are unlikely to overwinter well in the harsh elements. Plants that are shedding their leaves should be well inside a shed as they go dormant.
If the crops are left outdoors, cover them with protective fleece is a great way to save them from damage. Combined with mulching, fleece can be very effective and guard against wind chill, low ground temperature, snow and hail.