Tips for your garden in the pre-winter period
In this transitional period between autumn and winter, there is also a great deal to be done in the garden. Of course, a lot depends on what kind of garden you are caring for. So, here I will limit myself to a few important tasks that are indispensable in my gardens at Dennenlohe Castle in the run-up to winter. Some of them will probably also be good ideas for your garden.
The importance of frost protection
By heaping fallen leaves around shrubs and bushes, you are creating a micro-climate that helps to protect against frost and enables moisture to form in the soil. Plants in tubs, pots and boxes also need our help to protect them against frost, as there it can penetrate faster and deeper. The best way is to wrap these plants in hessian or bubble-wrap. Then let the winter do its worst!
Spread manure on herb beds and around shrubs
Even if some people find it somewhat disgusting, dung from animals such as horses, cows, goats and others is a perfect fertiliser that comes with certain advantages. I would like to mention two especially important ones here. Firstly, fertiliser of this kind is always completely organic and secondly, it is often free. As I have horses myself, it's a great solution for me! Ideally, mix the manure into the garden soil a little.
Tie the stems of high grasses together
This makes sense for grasses approx. 30 centimetres high or more. The main reason for doing this is so that moisture can build up in the heart of the grass. Types of grass for which this is advisable are, for example, species of miscanthus ("elephant grass"), and species of Calamagrostis feather reed grass, such as "Karl Foerster". Otherwise, snow can have a negative effect on these attractive high grasses.
Shake wet snow off branches
The branches of yews and conifers, but also of larger shrubs in your garden, will benefit if you remember to shake off wet snow if the need arises. That way, you will prevent branches from breaking under the weight of snow.
Leave a pile of leaves in your garden for hedgehogs
If, like me, you are a hedgehog fan, leave a pile of leaves for them in your garden. And this pile should not just consist of leaves – you can create the best "hedgehog castle" for the deepest hedgehog hibernation by mixing a few small branches in with the leaves, and placing the heap in a slightly protected spot.
Baron Robert von Süsskind
In the pre-winter period, there is also a great deal to be done in the garden.
High grasses require our special attention before the onset of winter.
A happy hedgehog peers up before entering into hibernation in a pile of leaves.