We may have had an exceptionally mild fall and holiday season this year, but as the old saying goes, all good things must eventually come to an end and winter has officially arrived here in the St. Louis area. While you can safely forget about mowing the lawn for a couple of months, that doesn’t mean that you should neglect your landscaping and outdoor spaces entirely. Here’s a few tips from the professionals at Flora Design & Landscape to help get your landscaping through the winter and safely into the spring.
Pruning in the winter months is essential to encouraging healthy plant growth in the spring. In fact, the best time to prune most deciduous plants and trees is in late winter when they are dormant. The lack of foliage makes it easier to see the plant’s shape, and pruning at this time leaves wounds exposed for only a short while before spring growth begins. If the idea of going to town out in the cold with a pair of pruning shears doesn’t excite you, Flora’s maintenance team can handle this task for you.
Protect your lawn throughout the winter months by cleaning up any debris and/or fallen leaves as quickly as possible. Allowing these items to sit throughout the winter can be detrimental as they can smother your grass, cause diseases and attract pests such as mice and insects. It is also extremely important to move furniture, toys, and other large objects off the grass, as the weight of these items can stunt growth, creating large dead spots on your lawn come springtime.
Your lawn can tolerate a moderate amount of foot traffic, but walking on it too frequently can lead to damage. If a well-worn path is formed over the winter, the grass will have a much more difficult time recovering in the spring. To prevent this, keep your driveway and walkways clear of snow and ice so that you and your guests won’t be tempted to cut across the lawn. If you do not already have walkways, consider adding some to your yard. Not only will they help to protect your grass, but they will also improve the safety and appearance of your property. Unlike many St. Louis landscape companies, Flora Design & Landscape operates year-round, and winter is the perfect time to add these types of hardscape elements to your home.
Snow may be beautiful, but it can also cause problems for your lawn and landscaping. After a heavy snowfall, it is always a good idea to gently brush excess snow off low-hanging tree branches. This will help to prevent limbs from breaking under the weight, which can be dangerous and leaves trees more susceptible to disease. Problems can also occur when large amounts of snow are left sitting on your lawn for an extended period of time. This can cause mold to grow underneath the snow and attack the grass. Luckily, snow mold can usually be prevented by simply spreading out large piles of snow after shoveling.
When you spread salt on your driveway and walkways it can seep into the soil and absorb moisture, potentially dehydrating your plants and damaging root systems. Use salt sparingly and try to keep it off grass and other landscaping. If you need something to help improve traction, try using plant-friendly deicing products or scattering sand, kitty litter or birdseed.
Winter probably isn’t your favorite time to be doing yard work, but a little bit of winter lawn care and upkeep now can make a world of difference in the spring. If you would like more information or to sign up for Flora’s seasonal maintenance services, fill out our online contact form or give us a call at (636)728-1520.