Some folks like to while away the winter indoors, donning slippers and flannel PJs and hibernating by the fire with a cup of hot cocoa. But some Michigan homeowners want to wring every available minute out of outdoor living, regardless of the snow and cold temperatures. If you fall into the latter category, we’ve got some good news: you can make your yard look just as good throughout the winter as it did during the warmer months — and lay some important groundwork so your lawn is ready when the thaw comes.
Don’t Neglect the Essentials
Before you worry about getting fancy with winter decor, remember that there are some simple things you can do to take care of your landscape in the winter. Ice and snow removal is a must. So, too, is taking care of plants that are prone to crushing under the weight of winter precipitation with a burlap wrap or some strategic tie-offs. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even try your hand at a little winter gardening; it’s a great time to start seeds indoors for outdoor planting in the spring, and you’d be surprised how well lettuce, peas, onions, and some other leafy greens do outdoors in the winter.
Find New Sources of Color
Most of us don’t think of bold colors when we think of winter. We think of muted light, snowfall, and lots of dead, brown plants, and grasses. That doesn’t mean the season has to be dull and grey (or beige). Choosing evergreens, or perennials that flower or retain their fruit in winter, means having cheerful and seasonally-appropriate color. And remember that the dramatic light that’s common this time of year makes it great for other elements — patterns, contrast, and texture among them — to shine so that you’re not relying on color to do all the heavy lifting. Outdoor decor like a gazing ball, a wreath, or some pinecones and other decor in planting boxes can really stand out. And of course, a bird feeder will not only take care of your feathered friends but also make sure you’ve got company while you enjoy your morning coffee.
Use Native Plants
Don’t succumb to the lure of non-native plants from your local garden center or big box home supply store. Many of them are sold for their looks, not their suitability to the Michigan soil and climate; some will even be invasive species. Relying on native plant species has benefits year round. They’re lower maintenance in the warmer months, and they’re hardy enough to survive the worst that winter can dish out. Not sure what to plant? Ask us!
Get Creative with Hardscaping
Up to this point, we’ve primarily considered softscaping — that is to say, all the green stuff in your lawn and garden. But hardscaping has its place in the wintertime, as well. A fire feature, like a fire pit or outdoor kitchen, can give you more options for using and enjoying your outdoor spaces year round.
Getting a Helping Hand
Of course, nobody said you had to do all of this on your own. The best time to prepare for winter landscaping is actually months in advance, but if you’re reading this in the dead of winter, we still have good news: you’re just in time to start thinking about the spring and summer months. HTA Companies can take care of the essentials with a range of Michigan lawn care services that ensures your lawn wakes up from its winter rest ready to look its best in the warmer months to come.