winter landscaping tips

Growing Winter Plants and Vegetables

A Guide to Growing in the Mid-Atlantic Region

The growing season isn’t over. Late fall is an often overlooked but easy gardening season. You don’t need to water or turn the soil over as often, and the plants provide much needed color as the trees lose their leaves.

Some of the best plants for soups and harvest salads can be planted right now. This is the ideal time to plan garlic, a main ingredient in many meals. Root crops do well in colder weather and continue growing beneath the soil even in the snow.

Make sure to check any plants you purchase to see if they thrive in our region’s climate. In our area of the Brandywine Valley, the USDA rates the area as a 7A and 7B. This means we experience seasonal variations. We might have periods of warm weather in the winter and experience cold winds in early spring.

Mass planting embodies simplicity because it reads as one large element instead of a wide variety of individual plants

The hardiest winter plants are kale, spinach and collards. Root crops that flourish in the colder weather include radishes, turnips, kohlrabi and leeks. Planted in the fall, asparagus will appear after a year or two in the spring. Broccoli can be planted up to 10 weeks before a frost and will last through the winter.

If you’re looking to plant flowers, the following hardy plants make a vibrant winter garden: crocus, camellia, winterberry, ornamental cabbage, daphne and hellebore. These winter flowers will thrive in the cold and offer gorgeous displays all winter long.

Be sure to plant all winter plants and vegetables at least six weeks before the first frost to ensure they have time to establish a root system. It never hurts to protect new plants with burlap coverings for the first few weeks as well.

Fall Mulching

How to Keep Your Lawn Healthy This Winter

As the cold season approaches, the steps you take now to protect your landscaping can make a huge impact on the health and future growth of your lawn. Winter prepping your property is the most efficient and effective way to safeguard your time and investment. 

The following tips will keep you from having to replace or repair your home in the spring:

Aerate Soil

Take advantage of the number of leaves falling this time of year to create a ground cover for your plants and trees. Shredded leaves make an ideal protection from ice and snow. They also work to protect the root structure and retain moisture in soil.

Summer landscaping - DiSabatino

Trim Dead Limbs

Broken branches expend unnecessary energy for trees and shrubs, taking up precious water and minerals. Trim dead leaves, flowers and other areas of the plant that don’t look healthy. Keep in mind that brown leaves don’t mean the tree is dead. Some trees, such as evergreens and magnolias, turn brown and then green again. The stems should be pliable and firm, with a green cast.

Cover Exposed Plants

Harsh winter winds can cause major damage to vulnerable plants. Protect them with burlap netting to shield them from ice, snow and heavy winds. A cover will also offer extra support to the branches, helping prevent severe breakage.

Remove Unnecessary Clutter

Fall is the perfect time of year to do an evaluation of your home. Have your children outgrown that playset? Do you really need three fire pits? Does your outdoor furniture need an update? Remove the extra clutter or unnecessary yard ornaments now. If you don’t want to sell them, you can donate them to organizations such as Green Drop or the Salvation Army, which offer free pickup.

Get an Expert Evaluation

A professional landscaping firm, like DiSabatino Landscaping, can offer ideas for ways to upgrade your property. Give them a call before their busy spring season to get an expert opinion on areas you may have overlooked. You’ll have time to review and suggestions and decide which services you’d like to consider to make your home a haven all year round.

colordogwood

How to Handle the Challenges to Your Landscape for Record Cold Winter

winter landscapes

2018 has started off as a blustery cold winter and our friend Phil the groundhog gave us some more bad news when he saw his shadow, declaring six more weeks of winter. Whether you believe in Phil’s skills or not, one thing is for sure: this record cold winter has had a major impact on our area.

How has this affected homeowners?

This year, we heard from many of our clients that their pipes have burst for the first time ever in more than 50 years of living in their homes. Sustained wind chills at below zero temperatures have kept a lot of plumbers busy.

Because temperatures were so low and were accompanied by snow, there were higher than average amounts of rock salt being used. In some cases, it was ineffective because it was so cold.

This is an issue because the salt can be dangerous to driveways, walkways, garages and plants that are in close proximity to the street. Even though our clients may be diligent in using safe concrete and paved surface products, tires and wheel wells can pick up significant amounts of rock salt and brine. The residuals can drop onto the driveway or get tracked into patios and walkways. When the snow melts, the salt gets into soil, seriously hurting plants and trees.

Evergreen plants such as boxwoods, cherry laurels, rhododendrons and others get serious winter burn and browning, causing concerned homeowners. Luckily, in most instances the new growth will emerge in the spring.

In addition, our company’s work schedule has been impacted by weather delays and low temperatures that cause unsafe word conditions. This has resulted in a larger than usual backlog for the spring. Even with this cold weather, a lot of our clients have been planning their outdoor living spaces, pools and landscapes to be ready when the warm temperatures arrive. If you are planning a project this spring, we recommend contacting one of our team members for a consultation to get started soon.

This year is starting off as one of our busiest in over a decade. We are committed to taking care of our clients and continuing our tradition of excellence in customer service and quality installs, but we need your help this year to have us out early enough to take care of your landscape, outdoor living space or pool.

And when spring does come, we’ll all be grateful to hear birds chirping, see plants budding and entertain friends and family outdoors!


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can design an outdoor living environment that will add quality to your life and value to your home. Give us a call today! 302-764-0480

4 Benefits of Planting ‘Winter Interest’ Plants

4 Benefits of Planting ‘Winter Interest’ Plants

The winter weather tends to bring a boring, cold landscape that further makes us want spring to come as soon as possible. All the plants in a landscape are frozen in time or cut back to the ground, awaiting the weather to break and bring us their colorful interest for yet another season.

This winter, as you stay warm in your home, consider spots outside that could benefit from a little color added to an otherwise bland landscape. Winter interest plants may not warm you up, but they are sure to bring some color and lifeduring the boring winter days.

4 Benefits of Planting ‘Winter Interest’ Plants This Season:

colordogwood 1) COLOR – Color that is otherwise not around until the weather breaks in April.  Try color twig dogwood or Switchgrasses (Panicum sp.) as winter accent plants.
winter interest plants 2) BIRDS –Winterberry shrubs and Hawthorne trees have colorful berries that attract an array of birds.
Witchhazel 3) FLOWERS – Early flowering Witch-hazel and perennial Hellebore give a surprise of flower color during winter months.
winter landscapes 4) SHELTER – Grasses that are not cut back are a habitat for wildlife, including some beneficial pollinators that overwinter in stems of grass plants and perennials.

There is no added landscape maintenance for winter interest plants. ‘Winter Interest’ plants are utilized in many ways to improve the winter view until our flowers and warm weather return in the spring!


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can design an outdoor living environment that will add quality to your life and value to your home. Give us a call today! 302-764-0480

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