Landscaping Vancouver: Winter Garden Prep 101

When it comes to landscaping in Vancouver, seasonal prep is important. As the clouds prepare to perpetual layer over the sky, we are busy working with our clients across Vancouver, Burnaby, and New West to prepare their gardens for spring!

In order to prepare and protect much-loved gardens from cold, often unpredictable winters- there are a few key steps necessary to take, and we’ve gathered them all up here for easy autumnal reference!

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Winterizing your Lawn

As landscapers in Vancouver, we know it’s easy to forget our lawns are living organisms and need the same care and attention as trees and flowers. Although lawns are primarily dormant in the winter months- these tips will ensure that they thrive come springtime. Remember, the healthier the lawn, the more resistant it is to weeds and pests.

Dethatch

Thatch is the name we give to the layer of debris that often accumulates between the grass and the soil surface. This layer can include old clippings, tangled blades of grass, roots, and other organic debris. This layer can make it difficult for air, water and fertilizer to penetrate the soil. Detaching is the process of removing this layer, and is best when done annually. If you want to get buff in the process, it’s time to pick up a rake. If you’d rather not be sweating, we’re pleased to offer comprehensive landscape maintenance and winter prep.

Overseed

As we near the end of the year, it can be pretty clear that our lawns are getting tired. Sparse patches, mucky spots and browning grass are all potential side effects of lawn worn out from a long year of use. With the leaves from the trees making way for sunlight and colder temperatures knocking out our pervasive lawn weeds – fall is the perfect time to overseed. Overseeding is exactly what the name suggests, spreading an extra layer of seeds over your lawn in order to guarantee lush growth the following spring.

Aerate

Creating small holes in the lawn in onerous work, but it works to help break up compacted soil from the last few seasons of heavy use. This helps your lawn allow greater airflow and better drainage, resulting in healthier root systems and lawns that will leave the neighbours green with envy.

Fertilize

Fertilizing is another great way to prep your lawn for the  Vancouver winter. We use a fall lawn fertilizer, which focuses on improving root systems while preparing the garden for any winter stressors. Additionally, adding a layer of lime approximately 2-3 weeks after can help to counteract the acidic winter rains for healthier soul–and healthier lawns.

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Winterizing your Garden

Once the lawn is done, it’s time to shift attention to the garden. With a few quick tasks, your plants will be ready to face the winter and wake up strong and healthy in the srping.

Leave Perennials

As landscapers in Vancouver, we know it’s traditional to remove dried seed heads and other organic debris–but these can act as great food sources for birds and beneficial insects! Rather, the trick is strategic removal, clearing debris where it can negatively impact growth and leaving it in places where it can break down to provide organic nourishment to plants and soil.

Be snow vigilant

While snow is beautiful and calming, it can still cause immense damage to your garden. Gently brush heavy accumulation off branches and try to avoid walking on snowy lawns, as compaction can quickly result in damaged roots and overall fragility!

Mulch

Mulch is one of our favourite tools as eco-friendly Vancouver landscapers! Mulch often makes the difference between a thriving spring garden and purchasing a lot of new plants. Adding just 2-3 inches works to help a garden retain moisture, insulate it from the cold, and starve out obnoxious weeds. Check out our dedicated post on Mulching to learn more.

Water

Most of the time Vancouver’s rainy winters will maintain this job for you, but it’s always important to pay attention- especially to potted plants under eaves and covered patios. Dormant winter plants definitely don’t need anywhere near as much water as an active garden.

Plant

If daydreaming about gardening is the only thing that allows your brain to function in the winter- why not just never stop gardening? It might be a bit more effort, but there is something satisfying about pulling a fresh bunch of green out of the expanse of surrounding gray. Fall can be a great time to plant carrots, parsnips, kale, swiss chard, and leeks – the perfect combo for a warm winter soup.

As a new generation of landscapers in Vancouver, we hope this post was helpful in explaining the need for winter prep. A lot of the time, this is something you can do for yourself, but if you need hep with winter prep, our team of eco-friendly Vancouver landscapers offer comprehensive fall clean-ups and maintenance to make sure your garden can thrive in the spring. Call us at 778.222.1701 to book a fall maintenance today.

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