While rain, ice, and sometimes snow can make it difficult to keep your property looking attractive, even for the most diligent homeowners, don't give up! Whether for your own home or a property you manage, there are a number of ways you can keep your landscape healthy and looking great throughout the winter.
#1 — Keep Watering
When the weather gets cold, we often stop maintaining our landscapes. But, the need for water doesn't go away. Failure to keep your fruit trees, lawns and other plantings watered over the winter can result in a variety of issues, including susceptibility to disease. You get a pass, though, if the temperature drops below 40 degrees as you don't want to freeze your plants.
#2 — Keep Raking
Raking in the fall is a typical thing in our area, but did you know that it's a good idea to keep raking lawns and gardens over the winter as well? Plant debris continues to build up, and when it mixes with ice or snow, it creates an environment for growing mold and fungus, especially where leaves have accumulated.
#3 — Cover Thin-Barked Trees
To help control frost and prevent sun scald, put a light-colored wrapping around younger trees with thin bark that are located in sunny areas.
#4 — Fertilize Lawns
To help your lawn grow rich and green in the spring, put down fertilizer that is rich in phosphorous, nitrogen and potassium prior to the first freeze.
#5 — Mulch Garden and Tree Beds
As you've read in our newsletters, mulch is an excellent insulator and it can help protect roots against frost. Make sure you lay down a nice layer of mulch in your garden and tree beds; one to two inches thick should do the trick.
#6 — Keep Grass Short
As we head into winter, it's a good idea to keep your grass short, between one and two inches shorter than usual. Shorter grass reduces the risk of frostbite and snow mold.
#7 — Winterize Sprinkler Systems
Unless you like the idea of a burst pipe, it's prudent to have your irrigation system winterized so that water in pipes doesn't expand and crack your irrigation lines. Our irrigation team can help!
#8 — Add Potted Plants
If your landscape is feeling drab, adding some neatly trimmed boxwood trees in large pots can add a hint of freshness along walkways and entryways.
#9 — Add Winter Plants & Trees
When choosing your plantings, it's a good idea to select those that not only look good together but also provide interest at different times of the year. For instance, great choices for winter include trees with highly textured bark, a variety of berries (avoid holly as it can be toxic to children and animals), violets, pansies, witch hazel, Oregon grape, maple trees, etc.
#10 — Prune Trees
With leaves gone, it is easier to spot damaged branches. Removing these will give you healthier, stronger trees in the spring.
#11 — Use Lighting
Last, but not least, outdoor lighting can make a world of difference for how you can enjoy your landscape in the winter. While lights help you see better in the dark, their glow also adds a touch of warmth, making your landscape look more attractive.
If you would like help in getting your landscape ready for winter, for your home, or even for any properties you might manage or have as rentals, please give our team a call at 541-729-8029 or email us to schedule an appointment.
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