landscape design with lifestyle in mind
Landscaping Mistakes to Avoid During the Winter

In most climates, winter can be hard on the landscaping you have worked so hard all year to maintain. To protect your grass, trees, plants and shrubs from the hazards of winter, these are the landscaping mistakes you want to avoid.

  • If you are new to an area or new to caring for your lawn, a critical mistake can be not understanding the zone where you live. Zones determine what type of plants, trees and shrubs will thrive. Planting for the wrong region can be a costly mistake if you decide to landscape your property without understanding the care the various plants and trees will need and if they are suitable for your particular zone.
  • Leaving grass clippings and fallen leaves on the ground over the winter. Foliage left on the ground mixes with moisture to form the perfect place for mold and fungus to thrive. Mold and fungus can not only leave you with unsightly patches of dead grass, but it can spread to the rest of your lawn or nearby shrubs and plants. Rake your yard well during the fall, but also continue to rake sporadically through the winter as foliage continues to fall to the ground.
  • Many people make the mistake of stopping watering during the winter months. Winter is not always synonymous with moisture, and in the absence of rain or snow, landscaping can suffer from a lack of water. Continue to water your for as long as it remains green, and water fruit trees and shrubs until temperatures drop to freezing.
  • Most spring bulbs are planted during the fall and early winter months. If you do not have them in the ground before the first freeze, you will not have the beautiful sprouts you want for the spring months.
  • Pesticides and weed killers require temperatures above 60 degrees to work. Using them around your r property in colder temps means you risk harming your plants for no gain as they will not be effective against pests.
  • It is tempting to store tools as usual after the last use of the season. Unfortunately, this often leads to accumulations of rust and other damage over the winter months. Make sure to clean, dry and oil your gardening tools before you store them over the winter.
  • The winter months are a great time to plan any changes and updates you plan to do to your landscaping. If you wait until spring to decide what you would like to add or change, you are missing out on valuable time to research and plan.
  • Most lawn maintenance and care slow down during the winter months, but the winter months are when you need to do any heavy pruning. Pruning when the plants or trees are dormant makes pruning less traumatic. Light pruning in the summer is fine, but winter is the time to do heavy pruning.
  • Another common mistake in winter landscaping is having nothing evergreen or blooming during the winter months. Most zones have winter flowering plants and shrubs that are suitable. If you fail to include any of these in your landscaping, then your property can look stark and barren during the winter months.
  • Change your lighting scheme for winter. In the winter months, the nights are longer and warm lighting around your property can help dispel the gloom. You also want to move lighting to different areas. After all, you do not want to spotlight a particular tree that might be glorious in the spring but is leafless and stark in the winter.
  • Winterize young trees and shrubs. Winter can be brutal on young trees that do not have heavy bark and a deeply established root system. Failing to wrap the trunks in a light colored burlap can leave these young trees and shrub supsceptible to frost damage.
  • Skimping on mulch is another critical mistake to make as winter closes in. Mulch can help protect your plants from the hazards of freezing temperatures, and helps them maintain vital moisture over the winter months.