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Garden Hacks: 10 Genius Ideas to Keep Plants Warm in Winter

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Garden Hacks: 10 Genius Ideas to Keep Plants Warm in Winter

January 31, 2019

Do plants need blankets in winter? Ideally not. “The true time to assist a plant that can be hurt by cold is before you plant it,” the gardening columnist Henry Mitchell believed. What he meant by that was you should choose plants suited to your climate, give them well-drained soil, and protect them from overhanging trees prone to dropping branches in snowstorms.

But life is not always ideal. Some winters an unexpected frost, record temperatures, or prolonged cold spells can damage your garden. Or you may be the sort of gardener who gave in to temptation, unable to resist the charms of a “tender” plant better suited to a slightly warmer growing zone. You owe it to your fragile specimen to keep it alive.

Plant protection in winter can take many forms: you can warm the soil, you can wrap a shrub, you can block the wind. Here are 10 ideas to keep your plants happy in the cold, dark months:

Burlap Plant Cover

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Above: A 12-foot-long Burlap Plant Cover with a width of 40 inches is $11.99 from Clever Brand via Etsy.

Jute Sack

A Winter Protection Jute Garden Sack is €8.50 at Manufactum.
Above: A Winter Protection Jute Garden Sack is €8.50 at Manufactum.
“Potted plants will also survive the winter in a sack padded with some straw or leaves as a buffer against the cold,” notes the retailer. “The sacks will also protect smaller evergreens like boxwood from the winter sun.”

Soil Warmer

To extend the growing season, florist India Hurst of Vervain Flowers unfurled black growers’ cloth, which absorbs sunlight to warm the soil. Photograph by India Hobson via The Garden Edit.
Above: To extend the growing season, florist India Hurst of Vervain Flowers unfurled black growers’ cloth, which absorbs sunlight to warm the soil. Photograph by India Hobson via The Garden Edit.

See more in Studio Visit: Glasshouse Flowers with India Hurst of Vervain.

Landscape Fabric

Similar to the growers&#8
Above: Similar to the growers’ cloth Hurst uses is Groundtex Landscaping Fabric, which also suppresses weeds; £36.47 for a 50-meter roll (approximately 164 feet) at Town & Country Turf. For US gardeners, a similar 250-foot roll of Garden Weed Barrier Landscape Fabric is $99.99 from Amazon.

 Fleece Jacket

Protect plants from cold temperatures as low as -76 degrees Fahrenheit (-60 degrees Celsius) by wrapping them in a blanket or a roll of fabric. Available in three sizes, Winter Fleece Plant Covers are £6.79 from Crocus.
Above: Protect plants from cold temperatures as low as -76 degrees Fahrenheit (-60 degrees Celsius) by wrapping them in a blanket or a roll of fabric. Available in three sizes, Winter Fleece Plant Covers are £6.79 from Crocus.

Fleece Blanket

Performance fleece is also available to US gardeners. Made of sheep’s wool, a
Above: Performance fleece is also available to US gardeners. Made of sheep’s wool, a 2-by-1-meter blanket of Frost Protection Fleece “protects seedlings and young plants from wind, cooler weather and nocturnal frost,” says Manufactum; €9.
See more ideas in 10 Easy Pieces: Plant Blankets.

Hoop House

A few months ago photographer India Hobson visited the studio of florist India Hurst of Vervain Flowers, who gardens in &#8
Above: A few months ago photographer India Hobson visited the studio of florist India Hurst of Vervain Flowers, who gardens in “tumbling old glasshouses” at her parents’ plant nursery in England’s West Midlands. Hurst relies on hoop houses to keep plants warm in winter weather. Photograph by India Hobson via The Garden Edit.

Frost Protection Cloth

If you want to make a DIY tunnel or hoop house, you can make a metal or wooden frame and cover it with Frost Protection Cloth; a 0-foot roll is $90 from poly-Tex.
Above: If you want to make a DIY tunnel or hoop house, you can make a metal or wooden frame and cover it with Frost Protection Cloth; a 250-foot roll is $90 from poly-Tex.

Polytunnel

Nearly  feet long, a Polytunnel Kit from Sage Horticultural is $data-src=
Above: Nearly 10 feet long, a Polytunnel Kit from Sage Horticultural is $1,265 AU (about $883 US) and has a galvanized steel frame, flap doors, and treated pine support timbers.

Curtains for Planters

A Protection Frame and Cover fits over a
Above: A Protection Frame and Cover fits over a 2-by-8-foot garden bed. With a steel frame and mesh curtain, it is $99.95 from Gardener’s.
N.B.: With autumn chores underway, we have a few more suggestions for your weekend:

Product summary  

Burlap & Landscape Fabric

Polytunnel Kit

$1,150.00 AUD from Sage Horticultural

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