Preparing Your Landscape for the Drop in Temperatures

With the hum of the holidays flitting through everyone’s minds, day to day tasks can seem more menial than ever. We’re as content as the rest of the world to sit back and enjoy the brilliant bursts of color in our Alabama fall foliage. Unfortunately, the recent cold snap has reminded us that trees don’t winterize themselves. Get a jump on your cold weather landscaping prep so you can focus on what’s truly important: warm holiday wishes and time spent with the people you love.

The Importance of Landscape Winterization

frosted leavesTrees may be hardy, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore your trees and shrubs when temperatures drop. Trees and shrubs are more vulnerable during dormancy. Winter plant injuries can lead to disease, stagnated spring growth, and hazards like falling tree branches. Preparing trees and shrubs for winter gives them vital hydration, nutrients, and protection so they can burst to life, healthier than ever, after the thaw. Start by winterizing your tools and lawn care machinery before moving onto winterizing your Alabama trees and shrubs.

Winterizing Trees and Shrubs

When you’re ready to winterize the landscape, take a walk around the grounds. Keep an eye out for weak or broken tree limbs that could fall during a winter storm. If possible, bolster weak branches. If damaged tree limbs might present a danger, carefully prune only the injured limb. Prepare your trees and shrubs for cooler weather by:

  • Watering adequately in the fall to prevent desiccation
  • Adjusting your watering schedule for the cooler months (plants need less water in the winter, but they still require hydration)
  • Protect the roots of tender trees and shrubs by adding a layer of mulch around the base of the plant
  • Wrap new trees in burlap
  • Wrapping tree trunks in wildlife-rich areas in chicken wire to protect them from injury

Do you have questions about late autumn planting, caring for Alabama trees, or choosing a tree variety for your hardiness zone? Ask the experts at 3am Growers.

photo from flickr

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