How to winterize your garden in autumn

In autumn, when the gardening season is slowly running out, they lay the foundation stone for a blooming and green garden in the coming year. We have put together the most important works and steps for making your garden winter-proof.

Cut off, mow and fertilize the lawn

Since lawns occupy the most space in many gardens, special care must be taken when preparing for winter so that the lawn grows and thrives in the next summer. To do this, it should be cut back to about six centimeters and fertilized or sprinkled with lime. The lime provides the lawn with nutrients that it can use well in winter. Leaves lying around and the remains of the lawn must also be completely removed so that they do not rot on the lawn.

For you, this means mowing the lawn again in good time before the onset of winter and accounting for it thoroughly. This removes moss and leaves, your green space gets more air and light and you prevent mold and rot.

A tip: If too much leaves accumulates for your compost heap and you have space in your garden, collect the leaves separately – a heap of leaves offers animals excellent shelter for the frosty time. In the coming spring you can then gradually add the leaves to the compost

Prune trees, shrubs and shrubs

You should cut back fruit trees, bushes and shrubs and free them from leafless, diseased or dead branches. For a pruning cut especially the thick, old branches from below. It is advisable to do this before the first frost, because the interfaces must be able to close. This does not apply to spring flowering plants such as forsythia and Weigelia.

Prune perennial flowers when the leaves turn brown. Only cut roses about a third of the way up to avoid frost damage, and do the rest in spring. Then cover the roses, for example with spruce twigs.

The cut is now too late for hedges, so wait for the coming year. They should also leave grass and ferns, they look beautiful in winter and offer winter roosts to smaller animals.

Chop branches, cut into small pieces, use as mulch

Ideally cut and chop the trimmings, such as branches from shrubs and shrubs. The chopped material is usually too coarse for the compost and rots too slowly. But as a mulch it can be used well. The roots of more sensitive plants that overwinter in the soil can be covered in this way. (Adviser: What is allowed on the compost, what is not?)

Dig up bulbs that are not hardy, such as dahlias and begonias. First, the stalks should be cut short, and then the entire root with the spade should be excavated, because after all, this should not be injured. Once the excess soil has been shaken off, the tubers can rest in the sand in a cool and dry place, for example in a box in the basement.

Care for beds, early flowering

Cut back dead and withered plants in your vegetable and flower beds. The beds can now rest; digging up the beds in autumn is not necessary – this can then be tackled comprehensively in spring. If you have fresh compost ready, you can add it to the existing humus. It has more time to ripen over the winter and strengthens your plants when they grow in the coming spring. The collected leaves can also be used to cover plants in beds or to enrich the soil with nutrients. Herbs such as lavender, sage or rosemary can be covered well with fir or spruce branches.

Before the first frost, also plant the bulbs of your early flowering plants, such as crocuses, tulips, daffodils, hyacinths or snowdrops.

Protect sensitive plants from frost

Now it is time to bring planted tubs to the winter quarters – ideally as late as possible, but before the first frosty nights. So that the plants do not get sick from aphids or other pests, they should be extensively examined and possibly treated beforehand. Non-hardy plants in tubs, for example Mediterranean plants such as oleanders or olive trees, can be stored in the basement, as can window boxes with geraniums or fuchsias. Compost annual flowers from the balcony or terrace directly.

For sensitive plants that tolerate frost to a certain extent, it is advisable to wrap the plant pots together with the plant in foil and thus protect them. Remember to water these plants sufficiently when it is dry – especially in winter.

If you have a garden pond, take out the annual plants and possibly save the seeds. Reeds and cattails on the pond let you stand until spring.

Prepare the terrace and balcony for winter

Finally, the garden tools are cleaned, repaired and oiled and stored dry and frost-free in the garden shed, basement or garage. Also think of electrical devices outdoors, such as garden pumps for watercourses, fountains or ponds: take water pumps for water tanks or fountains out of the water, clean them and store them in the basement until spring. Also take a look at the roof and especially the gutters. Remove leaves and moss so that the rainwater can run off easily and they do not risk water damage. If you have an outside water connection for your garden, turn it off in the basement to prevent possible frost damage.

Sensitive balcony or terrace furniture should also be stowed in a dry room over the winter months. Also consider your grill, the best opportunity to clean it and spend the winter in the dry. Owners of a garden shed are now checking for leaks, such as cracks in the wood of the roof and walls. Did you stack firewood for your stove outside? Then ensure dry and safe storage in good time.

Now winter can come – your garden is winterproof.

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