If you have moved into a new home in winter, renovating your garden is often a very smart but overlooked part of your early home renovation plans. Why to prioritise? Well, the main reason to put garden renovation to the fore, are flowers, plants and shrubs tend not to grow as fast in falling temperatures. This allows time to plant, bed and then look at them flourish in the coming spring and summer months. Also, it can be very tiring and quite frankly dangerous – snakes, insects and creepy crawlies to endure – during spring and summer.
The renovation should be well planned, aesthetically fit in with the surrounding area and most importantly stamp a sense of identity to your new home. With this in mind, here’s a full rundown on why it’s a great idea to renovate in winter, and how to get started, one step at a time.
Build cohesive garden pathways
Garden pathways provide a sense of structure, order and enhance the overall design of your home. Take into account and plan for the future when it comes to the type of garden you’re growing, and how the paths can add to the overall aesthetic value.
Check some ideas here to for top garden path ideas. Stone is the most commonly used material for building the pathways – it’s strong, durable, natural, and flexible enough to fit most designs. Then it’s about pairing the stone with certain materials, to make it as attractive as it is cohesive. Depending on the garden you’re trying to build, there are a lot great options available including sand, gravel, pebbles, moss, or grass.
Choose suitable outdoor lighting
Outdoor lighting adds a warm feeling to your home in winter. It also enhances the parameters of your garden at night time. On the other, if not chosen carefully, the light source can be too subtle or too bright. There are a number of ways to effectively improve outdoor lighting, the first step is to define the purpose for your outdoor lighting, whether it is to provide illumination for a whole area, or light a path.
- Lighting plan and placement: Walking around in the yard at night helps you envision how the lighting might look like in these areas. Find positions that provide shielding in order to prevent glare.
- Start with illuminating garden features: Creating the perfect lighting scheme is subtle art, but just keep in mind that less is more. It is smart to start with illuminating paths, trees, plants and other features around the garden. Use the right lights for each, but don’t go overboard on the brightness.
- Lighting system installation: Switches should be installed indoors for safety, convenience and check whether your current lighting can withstand all types of weather. Also, cope with the changes your garden will naturally go through. If you’re unsure about the DIY approach,, it’s best to consult a electrician in the area.
Screening winter plants
Screening plants are perfect for softening your outdoor area and making the garden feel like your very own sanctuary. Some crops are more suitable to grow in cold weather than the others. The most commonly grown vegetables in winter are lettuce, peas, strawberries, beetroot and chicory. Depending the style of your garden, you might consider growing neatly clipped hedges, or more informal hedges that need less pruning and take on a more natural shape. You’ll also need to consider the height of your screening plants, as well as your local climate and soil conditions.
So which are best? The best place to start is with plants that require minimal care, grow to about fence height, can grow in both tepid and cold conditions, and of course, look in with the aesthetic of the garden. Some favourites include: Orange jessamine, Photinia, Lilly Pilly and Sweet viburnum.
Garden health maintenance: Mulching
The best time to mulch your garden is in late-winter or early spring. Mulching your garden beds, soil areas and even pot plants is an important part of taking care of your garden. It helps reduce weed growth, retain soil moisture, and keep the soil cool on hot days. When you use organic materials, you’re adding nutrients that will make your plants healthier.
The type of mulch you use depends on the natural environment where your plants grow. You might use shredded shrubs, compost, fresh wood chips, lawn clippings, or even gravel-based mixtures (for succulents). To get the mulch right, remember that the finer it is, the more thinly it should be spread. Coarse mulch works best, and make sure you water your garden well before applying it as it helps lock in the moisture.
Installing a shade sail
Installing a shade sail is a simple (and satisfying) DIY job. They can be used to protect your plants, and offer shade when you’re entertaining. So where to begin? First up, you’ll need the right tools and materials for the job, such as a clamp, hammer, electric drill and screwdriver bits, sockets, spade and fork, ladder, measuring tape and pencil, eye bolts for each attachment point, support posts (2 or 3), ¼ D-shackle, ¼ turnbuckle and screws. The good thing is, all these tools and a shade sail kit can be purchased from most hardware stores.
Ready to start the renovation?
If you’ve got the time and the resources, renovating your garden is a great idea – for your family’s enjoyment, and for the value of your property. No matter what the season, your outdoor garden should be a space to grow amazing plants – and lasting memories.
This article was written by Michael Kobi, he is passionate about landscaping, home design and DIY. He loves to bring the practical and beautiful together in the one design.