Preparing your Vegetable Garden for Winter

October 28, 2014

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If this was your first year gardening, you may not have planned for winter very well. You may have been so excited to plant, grow and harvest your vegetables that you forgot there would still be things to do once the season ends. Here are some tips to help beginners prepare their vegetable gardens for winter.

  1. Remove dead stalks and plants. This will prevent disease and will remove insects that lay eggs that hatch in the spring.
  2. Pull out any materials used to support plants (tomato cages, trellises, etc.).
  3. Gently till the soil.
  4. Spread compost, manure, leaves, or mulch. Mulching the garden helps protect the soil from the harshness of winter and its low temperatures.
  5. Pile extra mulch around sensitive plants. You may lose some of these plants during the winter but others will survive just by taking this extra step.
  6. If some areas have been taken over by weeds, cover them with black plastic. Leave the plastic in place throughout winter and into spring to kill sprouting weed seeds.

Typically, you’ll start preparing your vegetable garden for winter shortly after the first frost. In some cases though, you may want to start earlier if plants are no longer producing for you.

Tags: howto


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