Whether your garden is full of veggies or flowers, harsh weather conditions can wreak havoc. But proper preparation can help prevent your plants from being damaged or destroyed by unseasonable conditions. Just like looking into ways to protect your home investment like a home warranty or home insurance, protecting the time investing in your garden is important too. Sites like https://www.cinchhomeservices.com/faq-library/-/faq/fix-leaky-tub-faucet have great resources on home services. In this article, we will delve into tips to protect your garden from landscaping.
Mulching, weed control, and watering techniques are all effective in protecting your gardens. But what else can you do to keep your gardens safe?
1. Cover Your Plants
The weather can damage your garden, but protecting the flora is easier than you might think. When the forecast calls for stormy conditions, make sure you take precautions to prevent erosion. Look for warning signs, such as exposed roots and muddy puddles, in your flower beds or on the lawn. If you find them, consider adding a layer of mulch to stabilize the soil and protect the plants from rain and wind.
When frost-tender plants like agapanthus, cordyline, and tree ferns need protection from freezing temperatures, wrap them with horticultural fleece, blankets, or bubble plastic. These covers keep the ground warm overnight and should be removed first thing in the morning to allow for sunlight exposure. You can also use chipped bark or leaf mulch for added insulation.
2. Keep Your Soil Moisture Levels High
Moisture rich soil reduces plant stress and helps plants fend off disease and thrive. Adding organic matter to your garden helps with moisture retention, as well.
Water your garden in the early morning to minimize evaporation and keep soil temperatures cooler. Wetting the surface of your soil also encourages roots to grow deeper into the ground, which makes it easier for them to access moisture during long hot afternoons.
Before watering, test your soil with a simple touch. If it’s still dry, wait until the next day to water again. When you water, avoid splashing the leaves or stems of your plants. The best way to check soil moisture is by sticking your finger into the ground. This allows you to monitor your soil’s consistency without having to dig out your whole garden.
3. Keep Pests Out
Many garden pests thrive in places where they can hide, and tall grass and overgrown weeds provide ideal hiding spots. Keep your yard clean, and regularly remove weeds, leaves, and yard debris to deprive pests of their hiding spots.
Also, avoid introducing plants to your garden that may be diseased or prone to insects. Always fully inspect garden plants before bringing them home from nurseries or planting seeds in your yard.
Encourage beneficial insects such as ladybugs, lacewings, frogs, toads, and parasitic
wasps, which naturally prey on garden pests. Also, use nematodes to treat your lawn for grubs (a favorite food of moles and raccoons). Choosing plant species that are resistant to common pest problems is another helpful strategy. For instance, if you have trouble with squash bugs, try planting ‘Butternut’ or ‘Royal Acorn’ varieties; and if Colorado potato beetles defoliate your crop, choose the ‘King Harry’ variety.
4. Don’t Forget About Weeds
Weeds are one of the biggest challenges any gardener will face. They can easily choke out vegetables and crops before they have a chance to establish themselves. And they can divert water from the plants you want to grow, leading to a decrease in yield.
Getting rid of weeds when they are small is the easiest way to reduce their number. Try to pluck them before they flower, which will keep the weed seeds from spreading.
Another method to reduce weeds is to add organic matter to your soil. Soil scientists don’t know why, but weeds are less likely to germinate in richer soil. So if you can, try adding compost or organic matter to your soil regularly.
5. Keep Your Grass Trimmed
Keeping your grass trimmed properly can help protect your garden. It also helps your plants resist drought, frost, and pests.
Cutting too short stresses your lawn and can expose it to fungus, disease, and other issues. Aim to cut your grass no higher than one third of its height each time.
You may need to mow your lawn more often during hot weather or in the spring when growth rates peak. However, don’t exceed three times a week or you may be damaging the grass.
Don’t forget to fertilize your lawn regularly. Make sure to water well before and after to ensure that the soil absorbs the nutrients correctly. Adding sand to your garden beds can also help with drainage problems. Avoid leaving piles of clippings on the ground as this could encourage thatch to develop.