How do I winterize - Knowledgebase Question

Glen Burnie, Ma
Avatar for mymistye
Question by mymistye
November 6, 2010
how do I get my gladious ready for winter.The plants are still green with stalks standing upright.Are most bulbs perennials??What do I need to do before I set out bulbs for the spring
and should I use peatmoss
in the soil base followed by mulch?

Answer from NGA
November 6, 2010
When frost kills back the leaves and stalks you can cut them down at ground level. Mulch helps keep the soil insulated and prevents heaving during the thaw/refreezing cycle during the late winter and early spring months. You can use any organic matter as a mulch material. I pile 4-5 inches of compost, shredded leaves or pine needles over the soil as a mulch. In the spring brush or rake the mulch away from the plants and you should see new stems and foliage sprouting. Most bulbs are perennial (they are storage organs for the plants. As long as you protect them with several inches of mulch they should be fine. When you plant bulbs you can add peatmoss to the soil to help loosen the soil. Instead of putting peatmoss in the planting hole, mix compost or peatmoss with the soil in the bed, then dig your holes and plant your bulbs. Good luck with your garden!

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