It pays to put your garden to rest before the winter, even in the mild climate of the Carolinas. Consider maintaining your winter garden in the fall, to ensure hardy and prosperous plants, beds, and landscapes in the spring.
Help your garden rest through the winter with these late-season tips:
Harvest what you can.
Now is the time to harvest and gather what you can from your garden before the first frost. Pick and dry your herbs, flowers, and seeds, to use later-on.
Plant in fall for spring.
Prepare to plant your spring bulbs, like daffodils and crocus. Late-fall planting is also perfect for adding trees and shrubs to your landscape and property. This time of year, it is pleasant working outside due to the cooler temperatures and fewer pests!
Get ready to discard.
Inevitably, the frost will come – even in South Carolina! After the first frost, pull and discard your leftover vegetable plants and whatever remains of your garden. Additionally, cut your perennials back and cover for the winter ahead.
Pull all weeds.
Make this the time to pull weeds and clean up your garden beds.
Keep things warm with mulch.
Take a strong step toward protecting your exposed plants by mulching. Use bark mulch or leaves to cover your gardens and use straw for things like strawberry plants. Roses and other flowering plants do well with a layer of compost topped with dried leaves.
Don’t make late-fall the time to prune; gingerly trim your shrubs and conifers if they desperately need it. Instead, wait until spring after the shrub is beginning to show new growth. When you do prune, cut close to the trunk in a crisp, clean line.
Rake up leaves.
You know how you are going to cover some of your garden beds with leaves? Rake them up yourself! Don’t let leaves remain on your lawn as the moisture will wreak havoc with the looks and condition of your grass.
Take care of your lawn.
Before winter, make time to mow your lawn and disseminate grass seed. This is also prime time for planting turf or installing sod, as needed. Talk to a landscape professional to learn more about a lush lawn next spring.
Late-fall is a good time to conduct a soil test. The results will indicate what you need to work on or change before spring planting season rolls around again, as augmenting your soil may take some time.
Get your garden and greenspace ready for winter with these tips and tactics. Talk to the garden and landscape design experts at Terra Bella Garden Center, based in Charleston, SC, for assistance in putting your garden to rest for best results next spring.