Winterizing Your Garden

As a full-service garden center located in Chicago’s Lakewood district, Fertile Limited employs a staff with extensive knowledge about gardening in the northern Illinois climate. Catering to the specific needs of the urban gardener, the staff can answer almost any question relating to winterizing a garden.

The winterizing process begins in fall when many weeds go to seed. In order to prevent a weeding nightmare next spring, cut back fading stalks, pull up roots, and/or clip the heads of weeds before any seeds are released.

After removing all invasive plants and garden debris, the wise gardener can start preparing the soil for the growing season. Spread three or four inches of compost on the top of garden beds and leave it over the winter months. Seasonal precipitation will leach nutrients into the ground to boost growth potential in the spring.

In addition to preparing for next year, gardeners should protect their gardening investment by digging up tender bulbs and storing them in a cool, dry spot. In environments where winter temperatures fall below minus 10 degrees Fahrenheit, an organic mulch of shredded leaves, pine needles, or straw should be placed over perennial beds for added protection.

By consulting professionals such as those at Chicago’s Fertile Limited, diligent gardeners can learn to make the most of the winter months and maximize their returns during the rest of the year.