1. Install shade sails
The perfect time to prepare for the Summer months is in Winter and Spring before the heat arrives. With temperatures soaring up to 40 degrees or more in some parts of Australia, shade sails are a wise investment to keep you cool. According to our shade sail experts, they can decrease the temperature by up to 10 degrees. They also are able to supply ventilation as they are generally made from semi-permeable materials. Moreover, shade sails are a relatively cheap way to increase the aesthetic value of your home.
2. Add garden vines
Beautiful garden climbers are hands down one of the best types of plants you can decorate your garden with and are a great way to makeover your backyard. They can be grown to take the shape of an existing structure such as a pergola or an arbour. If you decide to plant vines in the Winter, Clematis Cirrhosa is an ideal choice as it flowers in the Winter months. However, most vines will not flower during this period and will lose their leaves, so do your reading.
Vines will grow during the Winter and come to full bloom during the Spring and Summer seasons. Floral vines are a universal favourite, from which trumpet honeysuckle, grapes, winter jasmine, and Hybrid Clematis are some of the best you can choose from.
Mulching is a practice adopted by many to prevent moisture loss from the soil and to control the spread of weeds. The benefits of mulching are several, but doing it specifically in the lead up to Winter has its own set of advantages. Mulching during the Winter helps keep the soil insulated and the roots protected from the cold weather, especially frosts. Also, it keeps the soil temperature consistent and safe from fluctuations, which may severely harm the health of the garden.
4. Prune and tidy perennials
If you’ve been avoiding tidying up your beloved plants, now’s the time to get to it. Trim back stems and get rid of all the dead leaves. Don’t be afraid to really cut them back when they have stopped flowering. Leaving perennials as they are can stunt the plant’s growth. If not trimmed, they will grow tall but very stringy, with no leaf growth. Therefore, take out your tools and start with the pruning basics! Just don’t forget that they will also need to be fed and mulched as well.
5. Plant shrubs for summer
Plants take time to grow and mature to produce flowers and beautiful leaves. Planting them in the Summer would mean waiting for them to bloom all season and being disheartened when they take longer than you expected. The smart thing to do would be to plant these beautiful Summer shrubs during the Autumn and Winter months. Take good care of them by mulching and regularly tidying them up. Start your gardening today and by the time Summer rolls around, they’ll be already in full bloom, which will lessen the workload when you might be short on time.
Winter is really a time when you need to be motivated and prepare your garden to not only survive by protecting it from harsh conditions like frosts but to giving it a fast start for Spring and Summer.
We have mentioned some of the major steps that should be taken, but there are others that shouldn’t be ignored either. These include removing old or rotting plants that can spread disease, preparing the soil and perhaps planting cover crops. The last suggestion is a great idea, as it will increase the level of nutrients and organic matter in the soil. Varieties such as field peas and legumes will actually increase the nitrogen levels for the Summer crops.
These will lessen the impact that Winter will bring where soil erosion can be high and those valuable nutrients reduced as a result. Do not forget to keep your mulch and compost levels up or replenished, as this will also alleviate those Winter issues.
Finally, the best suggestion for Winter gardening is simply to stay on top of it; here in Australia, most of us live in temperate climates where we don’t have those extremes that the Northern Hemisphere suffers from. There is really no excuse not to get your hands dirty!
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