Winter time may be a good excuse for gardeners to rest, but for a diligent one, this is another opportunity to prepare for another fruitful harvest. Begin with these tasks:
1.Pull up old vines and plants
As snow piles up the ground, old vines and plants will stop producing. It is best to pull these out, especially with the high possibility of insect pests laying eggs on them.
Can I just not leave these old vines and behind?
If you will leave these old vines and plants, then there is a big possibility for them to hatch during springtime and eat your new plantings. There are also pests like the squash bugs, which uses old plant debris as a shelter over winter. So, it is important to properly get rid of these.
2.Preparing your organic matter
There will be a handful of compost, leaves, decaying plants and well-rotted manure during this season. Use this as a great opportunity to create a beneficial fertilizer for your plants.
3.Enjoy sweet crops
Garden Org says that a week of cool nights can help sweeten the taste of some root crops. This includes parsnips and salsify. So, you may consider leaving these crops underneath the snow for the time being. However, do mulch it up with straw or leaves and go dig it out when you see it sprouting.
4.Mulch those green leafy vegetables
Leafy green vegetables such as cabbage, kale, spinach, and chard can withstand the winter cold. Protect its roots by mulching around them. This also helps in preserving soil moisture.
5.Harvest other crops
While you can let root, crops stay underground for a week, squash and pumpkin need to be harvested before the frost arrives. Otherwise, be prepared to see the fruit having rot-causing fungi. Thus, it is better to harvest your crop before it completely turns into a fruit loss.
6.Preparing the flowers
For those with annual flowers, you may find it beneficial to pull these up and have it composted. As for those who have perennials, cutting it back and mulching these as the temperature grows colder will be great in helping these flowers survive.
7.Protect the berries
Light frost can be tolerated by strawberries, but its heavy frost will be too much for these berries to handle. Protect them by covering these with weed-free straw.
Are you planning to apply mulch on these berries?
Wait for the heavy frost to arrive before applying it. If you suddenly apply the mulch to these plants, it will only smother them. But if you wait too long before applying the mulch, then it may be difficult for your berries to sustain the winter damage.