Common Issues

November, 24 2021 Published by London and Area Chapter - By Trish Kaplan

Protect Your Landscape in Winter

From the CCI Review 2021/2022—November 2021 issue of the CCI London Chapter

We’ve been fortunate to have had sunshine and some good rainfalls over the past several months. We’ve enjoyed both and the lush green of trees and plants as a result. Was the rain enough to protect our trees and perennials as we approach a change of seasons?

Some condominiums neglect budgeting for attractive landscapes on the common elements and inviting curb appeal. When landscaping investment has been made, it’s important to protect it all during the changes in seasons. Surviving a winter is likely to be difficult for newer plantings of perennials and trees. Now is a good time to consult with your arborist and landscape professionals to discuss protecting outdoor plants and trees during the winter.

Trees

Trees have numerous attributes that most of us take for granted. They clean the soil; control noise pollution; slow storm water runoff; acts as a carbon storage area; remove air pollution; lower air temperature reducing the need for air conditioning in the summer and lower heating costs in the winter by acting as windbreaks; fight soil erosion; and perhaps the most well-known aspect of trees is that they increase property values.

Newly planted trees (within 2-3 years) work hard with appropriate watering to establish themselves and recover from the shock of being transplanted. Hopefully, between rainfalls and deep watering the speed of root establishment was helped.

Older trees can be cleaned up by pruning and keeping them watered through the fall and until the ground begins to freeze (usually late October or November). Following the last good tree watering, don’t forget to turn off exterior taps to drain pipes to prevent them from freezing and remove hoses and splitters from the spigot.

Perennial Plantings

We are never sure what winter will bring us. We assume nature will do its best to cope with the cold and snow but help is needed. Every plant has its own magic. Drawings of your landscape design and plantings will assist you with the proper manner to protect them over the winter months. A walk through with the landscaper who designed and planted the gardens will be helpful in protecting your investment.

Garden Ornaments and Containers

Ornaments and containers can create a bit of whimsy on your properties landscape to create attractive curb appeal. To protect them, it would be appropriate to store them off the grounds, away from salting, out of the way of potential maintenance requirements; and perhaps even thieves. Protecting landscaping investments is well worth the effort put into caring for it. Remember too, to make sure that de cor items are not in the way of contractors who may need access to the property.

Outside Lighting

Let there be light! In these days that are shorter and grayer, outdoor lighting is more important for safety, as well as security. Attention to the fixtures by cutting back plants and branches, removing debris from fixtures, repair of exposed or damaged cables or fixtures; bulb replacement; and cleaning the lenses can go a long way to brighten up the outdoor areas and entrances and create a well tended and welcome property.

While we are not really ready for the seasonal change, it would help to post your list now so that you can carry out the tasks before the freeze comes.

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