winter prep

It’s 28 degrees this morning. Brrrrrrr. We’ve been trying to wrap things up outside for the season.

Like last year, that means chopping up our bagged leaves instead of dragging them out to the curb…

 

shreddingpile

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

However, unlike last year, we now have an electric chipper…

shredding1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chops the leaves finer than the reel mower — better yet, it lets us chip all the oak branches that fall throughout the year and add them to the pile. Especially handy after a hurricane, lemme tell ya. We spread out the pile where it will remain under a tarp until late summer, when I’ll start using it around the plants…

shredder2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have to water less and the worms love it, so it must be working.

What else? Well, I sunk the pots of hardy lotus and waterlilies, then pulled all the water hyacinth and water lettuce out of the koi pond…

winterprep1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Those will be added to the compost pile. No need to waste them.

Now that the water temp is in the low 30s, we’re not supposed to feed the fish. Sorry, guys…

coldfishies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Leaf net still up to keep debris out.) They get high-protein food in the warm season, but when the temperature drops below 50 they get low-protein food because their metabolism slows down. Guess that’s why they move more slowly, too. We’re not supposed to feed them again until the spring when the temperature goes back up again.

Have also been making hay — when the sun shines, of course…

hay1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Okay, we didn’t make it — and it’s not hay, it’s straw (no seeds). Picked up from Allie’s in North Kingstown. Which means we can now put the plants to bed. Like the hardy banana (Musa basjoo)…

banana1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dare I leave it outside in New England all winter? Well, yes. Should be fine with some preparation. I wrapped it in burlap…

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Then I padded it thickly with straw and tied it up tight…

banana3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I will wrap the whole thing up like a burrito to keep it dry for the winter as soon as my white tarp arrives. (White won’t heat up when the sun hits it, unlike green or black.)

I gave the bamboo a thick blanket of straw. The three Phyllostachys nigra (black bamboo)…

bamboo_phyllostachysnigrahale

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And all fifteen of my Fargesia rufa…

bamboo_fargesiarufa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are only a few spots around the yard that are still pretty barren looking. I covered this bed with straw to keep the bare soil from sliding downhill next spring when the rains hit…

hayhayhaystraw

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hopefully this will be grown in by this time next year and will not require prophylactic measures.

Last of all, I gave each of my five Japanese maples a little protection from the cold, drying winds that are on their way…

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Wilt-Pruf is organic and biodegradable. Just mix it with water…

wiltpruf2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then spray it on and it coats the branches to hold in moisture. Good for azaleas and rhodos, too, if you have them…

acerpalmatumcrimsonqueenmaple

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You probably can’t tell the difference, but the Acer Palmatum ‘Crimson Queen’ can. She says thank you and see you in the spring.

crimsonqueenfallcolor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2 Responses to “winter prep”

  1. Sharon says:

    how great!!!!

  2. [...] I bought a Mission Black Fig? Oops, sorry. I protected it the same way I did the Musa basjoo banana last December, and uncovered it [...]

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