The Q&A Archives: preparing trees and vines for the winter

Question: Could you please advise on the best way to prepare my dwarf crabapple trees (Tina Sargent) and vines (Trumpet and Honeysuckle) for the winter. Do I cut the vines back to the ground? Do I need to cover the crabapple trees with burlap to protect them? I live in Montreal, Quebec - zone 5. Thank you.

Answer: Apply an organic mulch over the root area of all three, but do not allow it to touch the stem or trunk. The vines would be pruned in late winter to early spring, do not cut them back now.

Crabapples are very cold tolerant so you would not need to wrap it in burlap. You might want to protect the trunk from rabbit damage by encircling it with wire mesh up to two feet above the snow line and also setting a layer of wire flat along the ground extending outward to deter them tunneling in toward the roots and bark. Top the wire with gravel and then add your mulch.

Good luck with your plants!

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