Gardening in winter ‘can prepare ground for spring’

It can be easy to assume that gardening in the middle of winter is a waste of time, as the ground begins to freeze and conditions remain unhelpful for the growth of plants. This view is often wrong, though, as the winter months are actually an ideal opportunity to get your garden in the best possible shape before the most important season of all – spring.

Susan Littlefield, horticultural editor of the National Gardening Association, has spoken on the subject of carrying out green work at this time of the year. She said that in many areas January and February are cold and snowy months in which preparation work for the “spring’s outdoor garden” can be completed.

“Depending on the area, it may be time to begin starting some seeds indoors and late winter is a good time to prune fruit trees and some other woody plants before the buds begin to swell,” explained the US expert. She added: “It is also a great time to beat the winter doldrums by visiting a local greenhouse or garden centre.”

Hiring a professional can be a good idea in the winter, not only for the high quality of work he or she is likely to produce but also as it saves you battling the worst of the year’s elements in order to get your garden in great shape.

Kate Bradbury of Gardeners‘ World Magazine, writing a piece for the Guardian, last month said it is wise to start planting new species in the winter in time for them to bloom in the spring. She revealed she had turned to plants such as holly, guelder rose and dog rose, which she described as perennial native favourites.

Ms Bradbury added that choosing native plants for the garden can be a wise move as they offer greater support to other species in the area.

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