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Warm Winter: Protect Your Garden

Rooftop Garden, Mindful Gardening

For many gardeners, these unseasonable warm winter days have been a cause for concern. Across America, trees and flowers such as daffodils and magnolias have been mistaking the current weather of spring, blooming early. But will the flip-flop weather hurt your garden? Here is how to protect your garden!

It’s hard to tell. Experts say that it depends on the plants that you have and the irregular temperature that you’re experiencing in your area. According to Cornell University, warm temperatures in early winter can be good for lawns, encouraging root growth. Warm winters will hardly harm perennial flowers, trees, and shrubs; although, they may have fewer blooms come spring.

Which plants are more likely to be damaged by the warm winter months? Gardeners with fruit trees, vegetable gardens, and berries (blackberries or raspberries) should be wary. If the temperatures continue to change suddenly from warm to extremely cold it could devastate harvests later. Experts also say that warm winters could also bring more pests to your vegetable gardens.

So what can you do to protect your garden?

  1. Protect the new growth. A simple solution would be putting down salt marsh hay to protect any new growth in your garden. The hay comes from the salt marshes from the East Coast. It doesn’t rot, it is weed free, and it’ll protect the plants without smothering it.
  2. Protect small plants. If you are looking for other solutions top soil, fresh mulch, and compost can also protect small plants.
  3. Think bigger. For bigger plants, like small trees or large shrubs, build or buy a frame to put over the plant. You can also try a large burlap sack as well.

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