It may not be winter yet, but smart homeowners and business owners know that now is the time to start thinking about your yard next year. For those living in the West, winter and early spring can be frustrating times for those who are really into gardening, landscaping and other outdoor lawn-related pursuits. This quiet time of reflection can quickly turn to disappointment that the snow just keeps falling along with the realization that summer is a long, long ways off. True, yard care isn’t quite as demanding in January, February and March (some years, even April) as it is during the summer months, but still there are some things that can be done to keep your landscaping in great shape and to lessen the workload when the weather warms up.
Plus, we don’t know about you, but it always feels good to have an excuse to get outside for some fresh air during the cooped-up winter months. So, chin up and let’s get to thinking about how we can make the yard even better this year.
- Order seeds.
- Create or review your gardening journal and make notes for the coming season.
- Analyze your area for improvements. Are there areas that need extra foliage come spring? Can you modify or correct hard-to-mow spaces?
- Check mulch – reinforce areas that are getting thin or need extra weed barrier.
- Prune rose bushes and deciduous trees and shrubs that are not spring bloomers.
- Trim back old foliage from ornamental grasses.
- Cut back old stems of perennial plants, but be cautious of new growth.
- Hang birdfeeders to attract birds. They keep other pests at bay.
- When trying to address ice on pavement, consider using sand, cat litter or sawdust. Salt can be damaging to nearby shrubs.
- Make sure lawn is free of leaves.
- Brush snow from evergreens as soon as possible.
- For those in warmer winter climates, make sure to enjoy sweet peas and salad greens!