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Prepare Your Garden and Lawn for Winter

Winter weather is starting to arrive at the Chesterfield VA new homes. However, if you’ve just moved into your home or haven’t gotten around to caring for your lawn and garden yet, there’s still time to do some basic work now that will ensure some great curb appeal come spring.

When it comes to your lawn, autumn is the best time to prepare, but Virginia temperatures can be a bit more moderate sometimes, giving you a chance to get in some last-minute prep. If the ground isn’t too cold yet, apply a nutrient treatment that will help your lawn stay healthy during winter and be ready to go come spring. Also, if you haven’t done your last mow of the season, cut it a little shorter to avoid potential snow mold and also help it return to green faster in the spring.

If you do get enough snow regularly to deal with snow plows, you might want to consider posting brightly colored boundary markers along the edges of your paved areas. Just make sure they’re flexible rods, rather than anything unbending so that you don’t risk damaging the snow plows.

Also, if you do get a fair amount of snow, you might be surprised to know that raking your lawn after a heavy snow that sticks around for a while is a good idea. You’re not looking to rake up the snow — wait until it melts — but by lightly raking the grass, it loosens it and allows air to circulate better, preventing the grass from matting so you get better growth.

As for your plants, hopefully the ones you’ve planted in the ground are native and hardy enough to weather whatever comes their way. However, for delicate plants, you may need to dig them up and pot them if the roots aren’t too deep. Any delicate plants should be moved indoors during the worst of the winter weather and any hint of frost.

If you keep evergreens in pots outdoors, you may need to give them extra protection. If the pot isn’t large enough, the roots may freeze. Move them up against the walls of the house and try to cover the pots with mulch or leaves to add some natural warmth. It’s also important to water them occasionally. It may seem surprising, but their root balls need to remain moist so they don’t dry out during the winter.

If you have a veggie garden with fall vegetables still growing, keep some tarps and blankets on hand to spread over them on nights when frosts and extremely low temperatures are forecast. Some people use plastic, which is fine, but either way, make sure you remove any coverings in the mornings before the sun hits them, as the extra heat can cause damage.

As tempting as it may be, resist cutting back any ornamental grasses. Even if the top layer isn’t going to survive into spring, it does provide protection for the new layers that are growing underneath. Wait until late winter or early spring to cut back your ornamental grasses to give the new growth the best chance of full health.

Finally, take care of your empty pots. Clean them out and store them indoors in the garage or somewhere where they’ll be protected from the worst of the elements. They can crack during cold weather, especially if soil is left in them during winter. At least remove the bulk of the soil. Even better, scrub them with a solution of one part bleach to nine parts water to ensure clean, healthy pots for spring.

With some of these simple tips, the lawns and gardens in your Chesterfield VA new homes will look healthy and ready to go come spring, giving you more time to focus on the fun work choosing colorful plants and delicious seasonal vegetables.

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