Many businesses in Florida like to participate in holiday and winter traditions by installing outdoor embellishments. This is great but it’s equally important to properly care for your lawn and your garden plants during the winter months. All it takes is one night of temperatures in the low 30s to 40s for your most loved plants and shrubs to receive damage.
Here are a few Duval Landscape landscaping tips you should consider in order to protect you plants when decorating the outdoor of your business:
1. Pruning and maintaining trees is often left off the list when it comes to winter planning. It’s a great time of year to selectively remove branches to provide clearance, reduce risk of breakage, or reduce size. If you are unsure about proper pruning techniques, consider hiring an arborist-a specialist in the care of trees-to prune your trees.
2. Mulch moderates soil temperatures, keeps roots warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. It also helps sustain soil moisture, reducing the water needs of trees. Mulch inhibits weeds, helps reduce soil erosion, and can improve soil, which improves or maintains tree health. Mulch with coarse materials such as pine nuggets or pine straw applied to depth of 3-4 inches, but do not allow mulch to accumulate to greater depth. Mulch will insulate the plant absorbing the sun’s radiation using it at night to keep your plants, flowers and trees warm, just like a blanket uses our body heat to keep us warm at night.
3. Continue to water newly planted plants, trees and shrubs since it doesn’t rain often in Florida during the winter. Most of the above ground plant is dormant however the roots can continue to grow if adequate moisture is present.
4. Cover tender plants by using cloth, such as old sheets or quilts, burlap or special covering from local nurseries that is made for plants and always avoid using plastic. Plastic will cause condensation to form on the leaves from freezing temperatures, which results in the leaves burning in the sunlight.
5. When using outdoor lighting and/or decorations that require electricity, be careful when running extension cords and other power sources on the ground or through your landscaping
6. Make sure to discuss any electrical power sources that are outdoors with your landscaper or maintenance personnel. You wouldn’t want your holiday lights run over by the lawnmower, would you?
7. This is a great time of year to put poinsettias outdoors to show off their beautiful, bright red color. A few places you might want to consider are your community clubhouse, guardhouse, or even pool area.
8. Even though a Florida fall isn’t very cold, it’s still a good time to start preparing your lawn for the cold weather. Shorter days, lower light intensity, and cooler temperatures results in slower-growing lawns. Timing is important, the last recommended time to fertilize your lawn in North and Central Florida is October / November. A high-potassium fertilizer would be best for this time of year.