How to Start a Garden in Winter – Smart Gardening Tips
Now that the cooler months are setting in, now is a great time to kickstart on your gardening landscaping projects. In winter, garden’s don’t loose as much water to evaporation as they would in summer. Because of this, soils can easily water log if over-watered, particularly on the southern side of homes and in well shaded areas.
For those wanting a more simple garden with little maintenance at all, see the below landscaping ideas below with help from Smart Homes for Living.
PEBBLES & PAVERS
Pebbles and pavers are versatile items that help make landscaping functional while offering decorative accents. They provide a natural, ornate solution that is perfect for complimenting indoor and outdoor access.
- Natural and environmentally-friendly
- Act as a natural mulch for the garden
- Come in a variety of different colours.
- Prevent moisture loss and save water
- Can introduce unique design features by intermixing colours, sizes and finishes
MULCH & GRAVEL
Using mulch (mixture of grass clippings, wood chips, decaying leaves, compost, straw and hay) should be part of a good gardening habit, because it offers countless benefits:
- It helps inhibit weed germination and growth.
- Holds in soil moisture, protecting plants from drying out.
- Moderates soil-temperature fluctuations.
- Protects plant roots from the winter cold.
- In summer, keeps plant roots cool.
- Adds nutrition to your garden as it breaks down.
VERTICAL GARDEN / LIVING GREEN WALL
If you don’t have much space to deal with, a vertical garden (living green wall) is the way to go. They are panels of plants, grown vertically on structures that can be either free-standing or attached to walls. Their benefits are:
- Acts as a privacy screen
- Increases accessibility to reach plants (making watering, pruning and harvesting them easier on your back)
- Getting plants off the ground improves air circulation (and minimises ground damage)
- Enhances visual appeal
- Brings nature back into an urban environment
- Improves air quality in the space
- Reduces noise levels
SWAP THE GRASS FOR SAND
Sand will always be the best base to use for a foundation of cement slab, paving, filling around objects and for general building and construction. Not all sands are equal, with the basic categories of sand being clay, silt, loam and sand (with constant variation within each of these classes). In short, sand that contains clay helps with compaction, while sand with no clay is great for tiling or a kids sandpit.
Sandy loam is made up of a good amount of sand, silt and clay and is one of the more popular gardening choices, especially for vegetation. To make sure your garden soil is just right, test for acidity levels as sand is acidic.
- Move potted tropical plants (and other cold-sensitive plants) into more protected spots, like a verandah or porch.
- Reduce watering of potted plants in winter (they require it less when the weather is cooler).
- Prepare planting holes for new roses and fruit trees by digging compost and aged manure into the soil.
- If soil has drainage problems, winter is when you’ll be able to see where the problem is.
- Construct frames around plants that are likely to be damaged by cold or frosts, like cloth or plastic over them in the evenings.
- There are pretty winter-flowering plants available, like polanthus that is a stunner.
- Install a tank to store water for the future and get that winter rain