As the colder weather draws in, it’s time to turn your attention to winter garden planning. By protecting your existing plants and planting winter flowers, you can create an enchanting glen in your garden even if there is frost on the ground. In this article, we’re going to reveal our top winter garden planning tips and tricks to take you from frost to fabulous in no time at all!
Winter Garden Preparation
First, let’s talk about protecting your existing garden. There are easy ways to protect your existing plants throughout the winter, and shield them from harsh winter weather.
Mulch: A great way to protect plants from the cold is by mulching them. Mulch acts as an insulator, keeping the ground around your plants warm and preventing frost from forming on the soil. It also helps to retain moisture in the soil, meaning your plants will stay hydrated even during winter weather.
Frost cloth: If you have tender plants that are likely to be damaged by frost, cover them with a sheet of frost cloth. This will help protect the leaves from cold and frost damage.
Top Tip: Don’t completely cover your plants, as this can be counterproductive and lead to damaging your plants.
Cold frames: Create small raised beds built on stilts (called cold frames) to keep your plants elevated and protected from frost. You can also use old windows as a frame for this purpose.
Heating cables: If you have particularly delicate plants that are at risk of being damaged by frost, consider using heating cables to protect them. These cables run under the soil and emit heat to keep your plants warm.
Greenhouse: Move any exotic plants and flowers either indoors or into a greenhouse once the weather begins to get colder. A greenhouse is a great investment that will help you to save your most expensive plants as well as save you money in the long run. There is nothing worse than buying beautiful plants and flowers in summer, for them to die during the winter months.
Best Garden Plants & Winter Flowers
Now that your winter garden plants are well-protected, it’s time to think about winter garden planting. One of the biggest challenges for winter garden planning is dealing with frost. Many plants simple can’t handle temperatures below freezing, so it’s important to choose your winter garden plants and flowers wisely. Here are a few plants that thrive in cold weather;
Snowdrops: These beautiful little white flowers can add a touch of elegance to any winter garden, and they’re easy to grow. Snowdrops come into flower early in the season, just as the days are getting longer again – so there’s no better way of heralding spring than with these pretty flowers!
Hellebores: These winter favourites produce beautiful pink or white blooms that will really brighten up your garden on a dreary winter day. They’re also very tough, and can quite easily tolerate frosty weather without any problems.
Crocuses: Cheerful and bright, these little winter flowers will help to add a splash of colour to any winter garden, and they’re very easy to grow too. Crocuses come into flower early in the season, so you’ll be able to enjoy their bright colours even while the snow is still on the ground!
Primroses: These delicate flowers add a touch of romance to any winter garden, and they come into flower in late winter or early spring. They’re another easy to grow winter flower, so you’ll be able to enjoy their beauty for years to come.
Winter Aconites: These beautiful plants come into bloom very early in the winter, often while there’s still snow on the ground. They have a lovely warm yellow or orange glow that really brightens up any garden.
Winter Garden Planning Projects To Consider
Certain landscaping projects are best left until the winter, when the ground is actually much easier to work with. To help inspire you to start redesigning your garden and embrace the cold weather, here are our top winter garden planning projects to consider;
- Don’t wait for the snow to melt before starting your garden design or landscaping project. In many cases, it’s actually better to work in the snow! The cold weather will keep the soil firm and make it easier to work with.
- While it might be too cold to sit outside, why not take this time to build your very own bug hotel or bird house. These creative indoor garden projects will help create new homes for local wildlife and encourage more bees, butterflies and birds to visit your garden come spring.
- If you do love wildlife, it’s also a good idea to put out food during the cold, wet weather. Often the frost and ice can make it very difficult for birds to find food, so treat them by decorating your garden with plenty of bird feeders.
- Make sure to plant new trees and any shrubs in your garden during the winter. Plant apple trees, fig trees and witch hazel, which will help add colour and interest to your winter garden. During the winter, the colder weather will help any winter plants to get established and develop strong anchor roots, before the hot summer months arrive.
- If you’ve been thinking about putting in a new lawn, winter is actually the perfect time to do it. The ground will be frozen and more level, making this job easier to do. As the summer arrives, you’ll have a new luscious lawn ready for picnics and BBQs. This also applies if you’re going to install a patio or deck outdoors.
- Don’t wait until spring or summer to install a new fence either. Winter is the perfect time to do it. The cold weather will help you to easily assemble the fence and then once painted, it will dry much quicker than in warm weather. Plus you won’t have to worry about the rain ruining your hard work!
- Similar to assembling a patio in your garden, any bigger construction projects such as building an outbuilding, shed or greenhouse can be done in the cold weather. Since the ground will be hard and sturdy it will be far easier to straighten and level the foundations to build.
Winter is truly a magical time of year for your garden. While it may look bare to the untrained eye, there is lots happening under the soil. Give your winter garden the best possible chance of success with these tips and tricks when it comes to garden planning and garden design. By taking the time to carefully plan and prepare your garden during the frost, it will look fabulous over spring and summer!
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