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Winter gardening maintenance

Pruning A Bare Branch

Whether you’re a casual gardener or naturally green-fingered, there’s always a job to do in your garden – even in winter. However, many people don’t know where to start with these winter gardening tasks, so we’ve created this handy guide on winter garden maintenance to help.

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Pots Piled Up

Clean your garden pots

The winter months are often the quietest time in a gardener's schedule, so take the opportunity to do some garden admin. Scrubbing out your planting pots and trays will allow you to remove any lingering dirt that may contaminate new plants later in the year.

Give all your pots and trays a wash with hot water before restacking them in size order for the season ahead. 

Jetwashing A Patio

Get cleaning your garden

Sadly, the colder months come with the thankless task of sweeping fallen leaves. As tedious as this winter garden maintenance task is, preventing the spread of pests and diseases is essential. It also stops your paths from becoming slippy and exposed to pesky weeds. If you notice moss growing on paths or slabs in your garden, it might also be worth washing and brushing them too to prevent a potential slip hazard.  

If you’re a Places for People Customer and have a concern about communal areas or pathways in your Community, you can report your concern by calling our Customer Contact Centre on 01772 667 002.  

As the leaves fade, they’re usually replaced by snow and frost, which must also be kept on top of to ensure a safe environment. However, those annoying weeds aren’t dormant as the weather takes a turn for the worse.

In fact, the emptier flower beds provide the perfect opportunity for weeds to establish themselves in other areas of your garden, so it’s worth keeping on top of them.

These quieter months are also ideal for removing overgrown shrubs, like ivy and brambles, as well as any dead or unwanted plants from your beds and borders. 

Person Pruning A Bush In Winter

Seasonal pruning your garden

Winter is the perfect time to trim back many woody plants without running the risk of upsetting any nesting birds. Many plants prefer to be pruned when dormant to avoid unnecessary stress, whilst others can be chopped to encourage new growth in spring.

To identify which plants should and shouldn't be pruned during the winter, check out this blog from Gardener's World. 

Person Covering A Plant In A White Sheet

Protect and cover your winter garden

It’s no secret that frost can play havoc with your winter garden, so it’s best to stay prepared for the chilly weather.

Ensure your garden taps and ponds are properly insulated against the wintry weather and frost. Wrapping bubble wrap around outdoor plants sensitive to cold temperatures can also prevent disappointment later down the line. 

If you’re growing winter vegetables, check in and ensure they’re protected and covered too. 

Writing A Garden List

Carry out an inventory

Go through your gardening inventory and get prepared for the new season. Check what seed packets you have and whether they’re out of date. Clean and check your plant labels and canes to ensure everything is in top shape.

If you have a greenhouse heater, check that it’s in working order and list what supplies you’ll need for spring. 

Fairy Lights Wrapped Around A Tree Branch

Other winter gardening ideas

If you’re feeling festive and want to use some outdoor lighting on any trees, bushes or other plants in your outside space this winter, decorate them from the base upwards for the best results. If you’re using mains powered lights, always make sure that you use a genuine outdoor power setup, so that everything is safe and weatherproof.

You may want to use a potted Christmas tree in your home, which you bring indoors and decorate for the festive period, but then keep outdoors for the rest of the year once the baubles are put away. This is something that is growing in popularity as a more sustainable option than getting a real tree every year that is simply thrown away after a few weeks. If looked after properly, a potted Christmas tree can last for many years, and be a great addition to your garden when it’s not being used as a way to decorate your home.