Protecting Plants from Winter
Whenever the winter months approach, I used to always worry about my ground and potted plants. I had some bad winter experiences with my plants, until I learned some useful techniques in protecting plants from winter.
For those of us who have plants in our landscapes and potted plants on our patios, protecting them in winter always poses problems. Keeping perennials alive in the ground is hard enough. Keeping potted plants alive through winter is even harder.
Most of the soil on the ground tends to balance temperatures by retaining heat. The little amount of soil in pots easily release heat. How do we go about protecting plants from winter?
Method # 1: Winter Mulching for Outdoor Plants
Winter mulching is one of the most effective and easiest way to protect plants in winter, especially sensitive plants. Mulching with organic matters also enhances soil quality because mulch releases nutrients as it decomposes.
You can start mulching plants in autumn using a 1 to 3-inch layer all the way to the drip line. There should be space of about ½ inch around the stem for air circulation and rot prevention.
Method # 2: Insulate Outdoor Potted Plants
Potted plants or plants in containers are more difficult to protect in winter than ground plants. They contain less soil and tend to release more heat.
- Place as much soil as you can in the pot. The more soil, the better insulated the plants will be from the cold.
- Organize the pots into groups and position them in a sheltered space. Close to the house or a wall facing south is a good spot.
- You can also place potted plants inside.
You should keep in mind that, despite your all your efforts in protecting plants from winter, there are always going to be a few casualties. These are beyond your control. You will also be pleasantly surprised, though, to see how many more there are that will survive.
Did you learn a thing or two about protecting plants from winter? Do you use any other methods that have worked, too? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section.