How To Care For Your Perennials

How To Care For Your Perennials

Every year, many perennial plants offer gardeners in the UK the vibrancy and color they long for to brighten all types of landscapes. They can withstand the harsh British winters while maintaining attractive foliage, which is why they remain firm favorites in many gardens. In the following article, we will share some thoughts on how to care for your perennials.

From green and lush heucheras to radiant hibiscus, well-planned perennial gardens often provide an ever-changing variety of beautiful flowers for many years. However, if you are hoping for prosperous perennials, you must prepare your garden correctly for winter. Below are a few essential tips from you can use to help care for, prune, and plant perennials over the harsh months of winter. 

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Can I Plant Perennials In Winter?

While perennials are only going to turn into those star performer flower beds in the months of summer, this doesn’t mean you can’t plant them during winter. In fact, there is nothing wrong with planting perennials in the cooler months, and there are even a few benefits to this approach. 

Unlike the annuals that complete their life-cycle in a single growing season, perennials carry on flourishing for a minimum of two years. This is also why the winter season forms an essential part of their life cycles where they will bed down under the rotting leaves. This is when they adapt to these new surroundings. And unlike the perennials, you plant during the summer, those planted in winter will not need watering until the warmer and drier conditions start again in spring. 

When given the proper attention and necessary time, and the correct approach and methods, perennials that you plant in the months of winter will thrive in these cooler climates and prepare themselves perfectly for the summer months. 

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How Should I Prune My Perennials For Winter?

If you want the perennials in your garden to carry on returning and prospering during the months of spring and summer, pruning them in the winter is a crucial step. Whether this involves planting Lupin and Cirsium in the middle of winter or maintaining your prized perennials so that they can withstand their first season of winter, here are the three main pruning techniques that you need to consider:

• Dig Up Bulbs, Reduce watering, and Cut Back Stems

When a perennial is finished for the summer season (as autumn approaches), cut the stems back to around 6 to 8 inches (from the ground). This is also the time to slow down drastically on your watering. This will harden the plant so that it will be able to withstand damp and cooler conditions. Sensitive bulbs, such as gladiolus, canna, and dahlias, must be “lifted” or dug up before the frost arrives. Store these bulbs indoors and then replant them in your garden in the spring. 

• Feed Your Plants

Winter is also an ideal time to start feeding your perennials. Apply a layer of 4 to 6 inches of compost. The compost releases essential nutrients to your plants and improves the structure of the soil in your flower beds. It also replenishes perennials during the months of winter. 

• Mulch

Finally, before it starts cooling down and it is cold more regularly, a mulching method is also essential. Any old mulch in your perennial beds must be removed. Replace it with grass clippings, straw, leaves, pine needles, sawdust, or bark. This will add a protective layer for more sensitive plants and help insulate the beds.

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