Tips to prepare your yard for winter hibernation:

NOTE: When spraying for Winter temperatures must be above 40 degrees.

  • Spray repellent to detour the deer from browsing on your woody ornamentals.
  • Protect broadleaf evergreens like rhododendron or mountain laurel by spraying an anti-transparent / anti-desiccant.
  • Build barriers around plants that typically get flattened by snow and ice sliding off roofs. Consider erecting a hardware cloth barrier around newly planted shrubs to prevent damage. As well as, to give the brush off to nibbling rabbits and voles wrap trunks of saplings with hardware cloth or tree guards.
  • For those in windy locations, use burlap and metal fence posts, to erect windbreaks around marginally hardy evergreen plants.
  • For young tree trunks and thin-barked trees (like maples and fruit trees) wrap them with paper tree wrap to prevent sunscald (freeze/thaw-induced cracking). Be sure to overlap the layers as you go and secure ends with several winds of tape. You can also use white latex paint or a white cloth (to reflect sunlight) about 4 inches wide.
  • If you host frogs in your vinyl-lined pond, fill a plastic dish pan with clay soil and sink it in the pond. The frogs will burrow in and hibernate in it. Get water heaters into ponds before the water freezes.
  • Cut your grass, one last time before the snow starts to fly, cut it short so it’s less susceptible to snow mold.
  • Run the gas out of the lawn mower and drain it out of your power tools.
  • Service the mower now so it’s ready to go in spring. Sharpen the blade, pull the spark plug, and replace the air filter. Change the oil in spring.
  • Sharpen and lubricate cutting tools. Clean metal tools by removing rust and oil the blades as needed. Sand wooden tool handles lightly and rub linseed oil into wood.
  • Start your snow blower, so it’s good for when the snowflakes start to fall.
  • Stock up on plant- and hard-surface-friendly ice melt.
  • In the fall water your Mums well and pinch the dead flower heads to tidy the plants. As of winter, Do Not cut the stems back to the ground or pinch the dead heads (they will protect the plant) until new growth begins in the Spring.
  • Water evergreens well in late fall to reduce or prevent winter browning of the foliage caused by the winter winds.
  • Now is a good time for soil testing. If the test indicates the soil pH is too Low or too High, now is the time to add Lime or Sulphur as needed to correct the condition.  DO NOT APPLY EITHER LIME OR SULPHUR WITHOUT TESTING THE SOIL FIRST.

preparing yard for winter