Ask a Question forum→Prepping shrubs and perennials for winter

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Name: emily
Calgary, Alberta (Zone 4a)
Jul 19, 2015 4:16 PM CST
hi everyone,
I have several hydrangea paniculatas and aborescens and perennials too.
Need ideas on how to prepare them for winter . Thanks in advance
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
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Jul 19, 2015 4:30 PM CST
Hi Emily, and welcome to ATP. I live in Florida now but garden in Salt Lake City still, where we lived for 20 years before moving to warmer climes. (my kids and grandkids still are there) Salt Lake is fairly similar climate to you in Calgary, although you may get colder in the winter.

One word for winter prep: Mulch. A good mulch will keep your soil cool and moist in summer, stop erosion, slow down weeds, and keep the ground from heaving and tearing up your plants' roots in winter, too. So you can start mulching now, but don't bury the crowns of the plants until they've died back after first frost, then put another good deep mulch over the whole thing.

I never cut back anything until spring, then just cut whatever had died back during the winter. If the dead stems are unsightly to you, by all means cut them off, chop them in pieces and add them to the mulch - they are made up of what your plants need most!

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." โ€“Winston Churchill
[Last edited by dyzzypyxxy - Jul 20, 2015 12:26 PM (+)]
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Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Jul 20, 2015 7:47 AM CST
Don't prune hydrangeas in the fall. You may be pruning off next year's flowers or, if not totally dormant, stimulating new growth that won't have time to harden off before winter. You can snip off the flowers if you don't like the look over winter or prune out dead wood.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb
Name: Ken Ramsey
Vero Beach, FL (Zone 10a)
Tropical Plants & More
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Jul 20, 2015 7:52 AM CST
I agree
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
I don't have gray hair, I have wisdom-highlights. I must be very wise.
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL ๐ŸŒต๐ŸŒทโš˜๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒป (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
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Jul 20, 2015 9:07 AM CST
Hi & welcome!

When plants have gone dormant, raking the fallen leaves from trees over them can help a lot, to moderate the ground temp to keep it more even, as well as adding valuable organic matter to the soil.
๐Ÿ‘€๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‚ - SMILE! -โ˜บ๐Ÿ˜Žโ˜ปโ˜ฎ๐Ÿ‘ŒโœŒโˆžโ˜ฏ๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฆ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿพ
The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The 2nd best time is now.
๐Ÿ‘’๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ‘ฃ๐Ÿก๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿโฆโง ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒป๐ŸŒธ๐ŸŒผ๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒฝโ€โ˜€๐ŸŒบ
โ˜•๐Ÿ‘“ The only way to succeed is to try.
Name: Cheryl
North of Houston TX (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Plumerias Ponds
Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Jul 20, 2015 11:40 AM CST
Welcome! Winter? At near 100ยบ today, it is a cool thought.
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uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.

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