Winter can be a difficult time for landscaping, especially in colder climates. Many of us assume that during this period, our lawns and gardens will just have to wait until springtime before they get attention again. However, there are actually plenty of things you can do during winter to keep your lawn and garden looking their best—and these tasks often require the help of a professional landscaper.
In this article, we’ll explore 11 services you may not have known that landscaping professionals offer during the cold season. From snow removal to mulching to pruning, learn how hiring a pro can make all the difference for your outdoor space when temperatures drop!
1. Leaf Removal
While in some climates leaf removal is only necessary in the autumn, in others it’s required year-round. Depending on the size of the property, they may use a leaf blower or simply offer raking services. Many landscapers also remove the leaves from the premises, bagging them up so they don’t add additional clutter or become potential fire hazards during dry weather conditions.
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2. Gutter Cleaning
While landscapers are usually busy tending to lawns and garden beds in the spring and summer, many offer gutter cleaning services in the off-season. It’s important to clean your gutters regularly to prevent damage and buildup of debris that can cause water drainage issues. Cleaning out your gutter system will also reduce the risk of roof damage and prevent pests from nesting, making it a task that should be undertaken at least once or twice a year.
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3. Pruning and Wrapping Trees
Many types of trees and shrubs continue to grow year-round and require regular pruning regardless of the season. This helps maintain a healthy appearance and encourages strong growth in the spring. Some trees benefit from being wrapped with burlap over winter to prevent damage. Deciduous trees, for example, should have their trunks wrapped to prevent root flare in their first five years. Even evergreen trees may need to be wrapped in particularly harsh climates.
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4. Weed Removal
Unfortunately for our lawns, weeds can grow year-round in many parts of the country. While weed removal is part of every lawn-care professional’s daily task list in the summer, it’s also a beneficial service to consider over the winter months. Not only can landscapers remove weeds that are growing or germinating, but they can also take steps to prevent weed growth come spring.
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5. Winter Mulching
Adding a layer of mulch to a lawn over winter is helpful because it keeps the ground warm and prevents weeds from growing. It also helps hold moisture in the soil, so grass stays healthy even while dormant. Many lawn-care professionals recommend mulching services right after the first hard frost of the season.
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6. Planting Trees
While waiting for springtime growth, now is an excellent time to plant new trees and shrubs in order to have them settled in before warm weather arrives. Planting trees can be labor intensive, and many arborists prefer to undertake the task when they can avoid the hot summer sun. Trees and shrubs can be planted year-round in areas where the ground hasn’t frozen. Many types of trees actually do best if they’re planted while in a dormant phase, making winter and spring the perfect time to do it.
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7. Lawn Fertilization
Fertilizer is part of every lawn care professional’s arsenal. While it’s commonly applied during the growing season, it’s also possible to hire a gardener to winterize a lawn in autumn. They will choose an appropriate fertilizer that provides adequate nutrients to the roots of grass and plants in cold weather. Many winter fertilizers have slow-release formulas, which gradually release nutrients over time, and contain sulfur or iron that help promote root growth.
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8. Snow Removal
In areas that receive heavy snowfall, many landscapers swap their lawn mowers for snow blowers when winter hits. Whether you need snow cleared from a driveway or your entryway steps, the same professionals who manage your lawn in the summer may be available to tackle your snow removal needs over winter.
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9. Installing and Removing Holiday Lights
Want your house to be the envy of the neighborhood during the holiday season? The most impressive holiday light displays on your block were likely installed by a professional. And that professional may be the very same person who maintains your lawn each summer. Many landscapers offer Christmas light installation and removal services to boost their income during their quieter months of the year, and it’s a service worth taking advantage of.
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10. Felling Trees
If there’s a tree on your property that needs to be removed, winter is the perfect time to have the task taken care of by an arborist. In fact, it’s best to fell trees when the ground is frozen, because it reduces the risk of disturbing the earth and vegetation surrounding them. Another benefit is that trees tend to have fewer leaves in winter, meaning they’ll make less of a mess of the lawn.
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11. Landscape Design
Start thinking ahead to spring and summer by hiring a pro to do landscape design in their slow season. Landscapers tend to be busy in the warmer months, but they have more time on their hands in winter and early spring to help design your dream yard or garden. Before meeting with a landscape designer, come prepared with ideas and inspiration.