While winter might not seem like the most optimal time to do some gardening, you’d be surprised at how much you can actually get done. There are quite a few garden plants that can survive UK winters, so you’ll have quite a few plants to choose from, whether you want to plant or harvest in the colder months.
If you aren’t so keen on flexing your green fingers when it’s cold out, then there are also many other ways that you can improve the look of your garden without you needing to get a spade and some gardening gloves!
In this piece, we will list some winter gardening tips that can help you keep your garden looking great even in the winter months.
Make Leafmould From Leaves
Leaves that fall off of your trees in winter and autumn don’t need to be thrown away; if anything, that would be wasting them!
Leaves can be used to make leafmould, which you can use to insulate your plants in the winter months. This can protect plants from frost much more effectively than if they were left to fend for themselves.
Leafmould does, unfortunately, take quite a while to be ready to use, but it is incredibly easy to make. Here’s how:
- Make some holes in the bottom of a few large bin liners, depending on how much leafmould you are planning on making and how many leaves you have at your disposal.
- Fill these bin liners with leaves, but make sure to compact them as much as possible without breaking through the bottom of your bin liners.
- Add some water to the leaves, and then place your bin liners somewhere out of sight, where they won’t be in the way. It would then be a good idea to set a reminder on your calendar, as you will have to wait a year until your leafmould will be ready to use.
- After you’ve waited a year, you can then put the leaves through a sieve, and your leafmould will be primed and ready to use.
The type of leaves that you use for your leafmould do actually matter, as the leaves from evergreen trees can sometimes take up to three years to decay. Thankfully, you can speed this process up by using a lawnmower with a collection basket, as this will mulch the leaves up and mix them with grass clippings, which will make them decay much more quickly.
Plant New Evergreens And Maintain Winter Flowering Plants
While you might assume that planting any plant during winter wouldn’t be a great idea, there are many plants that are evergreen, which means that they retain their leaves year-round and do not become dormant at any point.
Some shrubs and plants flower during winter, so it would be a good idea to plant them before winter rolls around, so you can have some winter flowers to see and smell when winter comes around.
There are also a variety of fruit trees that bear fruit in the winter months, such as apple trees, cherry trees, persimmon trees, and pomegranate trees. If you want to prune fruit trees, winter is also the best time to do so.
Some great evergreen shrubs to plant before the winter months include azaleas, daphne, ceanothus, griselinia, heather, lavender, and yucca.
A few of the best winter flowering plants include winter honeysuckle, Christmas rose, pansies, winter aconites, snowdrop, winter clematis, and winter jasmine.
These plants will surely be able to keep you busy and provide you with a beautiful winter garden, so you should definitely consider them if you are still interested in using your green fingers when it’s cold out.
Do Some Maintenance
If you are interested in doing some outdoor renovations to your home, then winter is one of the best times to do so. Most people do not entertain and spend time in their outdoor areas in the cold months, which means that you can get your renovations done in winter, so you can enjoy your new fixtures in the warmer months.
If you are interested in a new deck, fence, or some cladding, then composite products are the way to go. Here at Ecoscape, we offer composite fencing, cladding, and decking that are all made from recycled materials like recycled plastic and reclaimed wood fibres.
Composite is much more durable than wood and requires far less maintenance, so you won’t need to spend all of your summer months varnishing or painting your decking or cladding.
Composite cladding is also great to have during the coldest and hottest times of the year, as it provides excellent insulation, so you won’t need to spend as much on heating and cooling your home.
Remove Tender Plants That Won’t Survive The Winter
While there are many plants, fruit trees, and vegetables that can survive the winter, there are also many that aren’t able to.
While Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbages, kale, leeks, and parsnips will grow in winter, potatoes, carrots, onions, and turnips will perish if they are left to fight the cold on their own.
It is best to avoid planting these crops during the winter, but if you have done so accidentally, you will likely have to uproot them and move them indoors or to a heated greenhouse.
There are also some spring flowering bulbs like elephant ears, lilies, and begonias that won’t survive the cold if they are left out in winter. One of the best ways to get around this is by removing the bulbs from the ground and cutting off all of their foliage.
While this might not seem like a good idea, you will only need the bulbs to regrow them in spring. Once they have been removed from the ground, they will need to be left somewhere to dry, which can take as long as three weeks sometimes.
After this, you can store your bulbs somewhere cool and shady, and before you know it, it will be spring, and you’ll be replanting them so that they can flower all over again.
Cut Back Shrubs And Perennials
A good few garden preparations for winter gardening need to take place in autumn.
One of the most important things to do in autumn in preparation for winter is cutting back your shrubs. The sap of larger shrubs is drawn back to the roots in the winter, which can make their stems weaken and cause them to decay if they aren’t trimmed.
You can cut many shrubs to one-quarter of their normal size during autumn, as this will help them grow back healthy after winter.
Can tomatoes grow in winter?
Tomatoes cannot be grown in winter, as their growing season takes place in the warmer months of the year.
Can you grow potatoes in winter?
No, potatoes can not be grown in winter unless you keep them in a heated greenhouse or a warm place indoors.
What winter vegetables can be grown in pots?
You can grow winter vegetables like cabbages, spring onions, brussels sprouts, beetroot, and carrots in pots during the winter.
Our cold weather garden tips should help you get through this winter with most of your garden intact, so many of them would be good to keep in mind.