As summer ends, watering should not. Continue watering your trees, shrubs and plantings until the ground freezes. One of the biggest factors causing winter decline is the lack of water and the plants drying out. If you allow the plants to soak up the water all the way to the winter months, they have a much better chance of remaining healthy throughout the winter months. Spraying your evergreens for winter burn will create a waxy coating on the leaves and needles to help seal in the moisture.
Removing leaves and other debris is the first step to readying your landscape beds for winter. Proceed by cutting back perennials, roses and if you choose, ornamental grasses. Grasses can provide focal points and add to the landscape’s visual interest. After having cleaned the landscape beds and cutting back plantings, lay an insulating layer of mulch across the entire landscape. Providing your landscape a fall clean up and mulch will continue to provide a beautiful landscape over the winter months.
Decorative clay pots add bursts of color to decks and landscapes throughout the summer months. When preparing your landscape for winter, remember to take them inside an insulated garage or basement before the night temperatures reach freezing. If left outside, the water in the soil will freeze and expand causing the clay to crack. Any perennials within the pots will not have enough insulation to winter over.
For similar reasons, remember to bring in the garden hose (after the ground has frozen and you have finished watering for the season) and any garden decorations. When spring arrives, place them in different locations to give your landscape a fresh look.
Other items to consider include making sure that you drain pipes are free from obstruction, providing a deep root fertilization with a slow-acting product in the late fall and installing bulbs for a burst of spring color.