Winter can be a particularly unforgiving season to our garden. It becomes a mess of wilted plants, frosted weeds, and rotting tomatoes. That’s why we make it a point to prepare during autumn. This way, we have enough time to prepare our yard for what’s to come.
Here are effective tips to prepare your garden for winter.
- Test your soil
Winter has a direct effect on your soil. The last thing you want is coming back to one that’s been dried up of all its nutrients. As early as now, you must test your soil to assess whether or not you need to make adjustments. From the pH level to the levels of potassium, calcium, and lead, a soil test will recommend just how much nutrients your soil still needs.
Now’s also the best time to add lime. It’s got the entirety of winter to dissolve in the soil. This encourages boosted biological activity, which will help next year’s crops. Once the winter season is over, you will have a healthy soil ready to accommodate again.
- Plant cover crops
We often hear about planting cover crops about one month before the first killer frost comes. However, we like to do it a tad bit earlier. This allows more time for the cover crops to add more nutrients into the soil, better preparing it for future crops.
Plant legumes in your garden like field peas and clover. This will add the much-needed nitrogen to your soil. It’s also best to consult with your local seed provider to find out which the best cover crop of the season is.
- Clean up your garden bed
It will feel like a lot of work. However, cleaning up your garden beds now will ensure that you have a neat area by the time winter rolls in. Otherwise, it’s going to take double the effort of tidying it up.
Break down the task by scheduling. You can allocate some time removing dead vegetation first. Afterward, you can move on to adding another layer of mulch. Doing so could prevent the soil from freezing completely. When it does, it’s best to add another layer of mulch for perennials.
- Remove invasive weeds
Those Himalayan blackberries and bindweed really did make a killing out of last time’s harvest. There’s no better time to get rid of them but now.
Make sure you remove these invasive weeds completely. Don’t bother shifting them to another part of your garden. Otherwise, they’re just going to sprout again and disrupt next year’s harvest.
- Attend to your gardening tools
Throughout the rest of the year, your gardening tools are working overtime. The best time to finally give them some TLC is just before winter hits. This way, you will have finally cleaned and oiled them up. They’ll be ready by the time spring comes.
Another tip is to store them properly before winter. It’s not just to help maintain the quality and performance of your tools. It’s also a safe precaution to keep everyone around secure and with peace of mind.