When the cold weather arrives along with ice, wind, sleet or snow, one should ensure that the shrubs are protected from it through winter gardening precautions. Winter is definitely not for shrubs because it damages the roots and branches of the shrubs or resulting in desiccation of the foliage and sunscald if one is not careful. In addition to the havoc unleashed by the winter temperature, sun and wind, the shrubs face the dangers of being eaten by deer and small animals like rodents and rabbits that look for food during this time.
If you want to protect your shrubs then the very first thing that you need to do is to use a hardware cloth featuring the ¼ inch mesh. Simply use this to create a cylinder around plants that are more vulnerable to attacks. The cylinder plays the role of a protective barrier against animals. Some examples of plants that need such protection would be blueberry, shrub roses, barberry, etc.
It is also necessary to protect the shrubs against sunscald caused by the harsh winter sun. To do this, one should wrap its trunk with a protective material such as corrugated paper (in light color so that it doesn’t absorb heat), burlap and so on. By wrapping the bark or the trunk, the shrub would be guarded from extreme temperature variations. This works best for shrubs with thin barks.
If you want to protect your precious shrubs against cold temperatures, which is inevitable in winters, then you should ensure that it is provided with adequate water to hydrate itself. During winters, if the ground is frozen then the roots of the shrubs wouldn’t be able to pull up water and its leaves would turn brown and wither away. Thus, adequate watering is necessary.
When it comes to winter gardening, it is also necessary to protect one’s shrubs from winter burn. To prevent winter damage one can use anti-desiccants, which are highly recommended by horticulturists. Landscape fabric such as canvas, burlap, etc can also be used as a wind barrier. Simply place these on the wind-facing sides of the plant and secure by driving wooden stakes into the ground. Never use plastic as it can trap heat and kill the shrubs.
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