European Robin perching on a garden fence in winter

During the colder winter months, we tend to hibernate inside our homes in an attempt to forget the outside world. It is easy to neglect your garden throughout the winter - but you probably shouldn’t! Given our unpredictable weather, our Manchester landscape gardeners recommend that you take some precautions to prepare your garden for winter.

Protect your outdoor taps

It is safe to say that the temperature will drop below zero at some point or another. The first factor that you should consider is protecting your outdoor taps. In the sub-zero temperatures there is a considerable risk that your pipework will freeze which can compromise their structural integrity. In order to prevent damage, you should ensure that your outdoor pipework is run completely dry. To achieve this, our landscapers in Manchester recommend switching off your water supply, then run your outdoor tap until it is completely empty. When empty ensure that your outdoor tap is closed tightly, then restore the supply of water to your property.

Clear out your shed

Autumn is the perfect time of year to organise your shed. In the summer months, you are probably in and out of your shed like a yoyo, making it difficult to find the time to clean it! If you take the time to organise your shed in the autumn, you will thank yourself in the spring when everything is tidy and easily accessible. Whilst you are at it, you should use it as an opportunity to sharpen any garden tools you may have, this means that they will be ready to go when you next need them.

Tuck away your garden furniture

If you have the space available, you should store your garden furniture away from the elements. Let’s be honest, we don’t get that much use out of our gardens in the winter - and thus, you are unlikely to need your garden furniture. Storing it away will protect it from the nasty weather, ensuring that you will be able to enjoy it for years to come. If you have wooden furniture, you may want to treat it. Sanding it down and giving it a fresh lick of paint will do no harm and is likely to increase its lifespan!

Install outdoor lighting

Given the fact that the nights are longer in the winter and the weather is even more unpredictable and hazardous, it is advisable to have outdoor lighting installed. It will make your life a lot easier when nipping out to the bins or letting your dog out at night! The installation is affordable and there is a huge range to choose from - we personally recommend Philips Hue and their smart outdoor lighting range.

If you don’t already have outdoor lighting, it is definitely a worthwhile investment. In the winter you can be safer when navigating your landscape - and in the summer, you can enjoy your garden into the night. We’ve all had a BBQ that has gone on a little later than expected! With smart lighting you can take complete control with advanced timers, location based activation and with Philips Hue up to 16 million colours (yes apparently there are that many).

To discuss the range of lighting options available for your garden, why not schedule a call back? One of our Manchester based landscaping experts will be happy to discuss your lighting requirements.

Tidy pathways and trim bushes

To ensure that you are able to safely navigate your outdoor space, it is important to minimise trip hazards and obstacles. The autumn will delightfully litter your garden with leaves galore and the harsher winds may invite loose branches and tree clippings onto your pathways. Although this task may have to be undertaken regularly throughout the winter, you should get off to a good start by giving it a good clear before the winter. It would probably be worthwhile to jet wash your pathways. Paving will usually only require a deep clean once or twice a year. The perfect times to do this are after a long summer of use and just before the spring to ensure that it is always fresh for use.

Net your pond

If your garden features a pond then your maintenance burden is definitely heightened. As you will probably know, the winter weather is likely to deposit a whole plethora of debris in your pond which can cause havoc with your filter. Although you cannot stop the wind blowing debris towards your pond, you can stop it from infiltrating it by covering it up. To keep it accessible, you should use a fine mesh net and pin it down with heavy stones.

Protect your grass

One aspect of the garden which is almost always neglected throughout the winter months is the grass. In the autumn, moss can grow on the surface of your grass and it is always a good idea to remove it. This can be achieved with a spring-tined rake - you can pick one up from any decent hardware store such as B&Q or Homebase. If you notice a substantial amount of moss building up on your grass, our gardeners in Manchester would recommend using a suitable moss killer which should be sprayed all over.

Does your grass look worse for wear? If this is the case, then it might be time to have it re-turfed. You can’t beat a freshly laid lawn! The autumn is the perfect time to have a new lawn installed, allowing ample time for it to establish itself prior to arrival of the hotter weather (we hope).

Feed the birds

Last but certainly not least, it is always lovely to think of others throughout the miserable winter months. Wildlife should not be forgotten as they often struggle through the winter months and so we should all do our bit for nature and help out where we can. If you don’t already have one installed, maybe consider setting up a bird feeder or water bath, this will definitely help the birds out. Alternatively, bug hotels are becoming increasingly popular. Why not do your bit for the planet this winter?

If you are struggling to maintain your garden, our experienced gardeners in Manchester offer bespoke maintenance packages. Alternatively, consider designing a garden that is future-proof. To discuss your requirements, you can schedule a call back with a member of our maintenance team.