Colder conditions

Certain plants in the coming months will require more protection. If in a container moved to a coveted position. If underground, dug up and moved for storage. Measures taken to protect from frost bitten winds and additional insulation.

Dahlia’s more commonly but Lilies too should be taken up and moved into storage. It will protect them from rot and give you the opportunity to discard the diseased ones and divide to propagate. Don’t dry them but provide a moist, air permeating environment. No light but they need ventilation. Bergenia’s (Elephants Ears) a rhizome should be uprooted, but unless the conditions are really extreme, they are usually okay save for the dead debris around the base that can be removed in spring. If you do, a dark space but very dry. Otherwise they will rot. They will go to sleep underground and appear dormant rather like Heuchera.

Some Cestrum’s (Jasmine) may need semi permeable fleece wrapped around them. This will be from the cold and wind although they will need to breath. In milder conditions and so the light can meet it will need to be removed for prolonged periods. Tree Ferns, Passiflora (Passionflower unless by a wall) too. Bourganvillea’s are a scrub plant in Spain yet for most of us are something for a container.

Small plants can be overwintered in greenhouses. Often these are bought as annuals. Geraniums, Margurites and Begonias. In warmer climates they remain in the ground. We buy them to repeat the next year but some flower over and over with the proper care.

Borderline Plants, often in containers moved to a warmer spot or indoors like Cordyline that are notoriously known for being thwarted by the mildest of frosts. Citrus trees too need some protection but usually out of exposure and often can withstand a cold snap.

If the plant remains outdoors, steps can be taken to alleviate the plant from the exposure. A method to create a frame and overhang protective fleece can be maximised when there is a cluster of afflicted plants. Equally effective for free standing specimens – straw, mulch, manure around the base to protect the root system. The leaves and outer layer may show signs of blight but can be cut out when this passes.

Posted by

I'm Craft Gardener with several years experience. Due to the massive impact the internet has had on advice, forums and consultancy services - it seems knowledge and experience is everchanging and we should therefore share techniques and offer others alternative routes in pests, diseases and weed treatments. The very smallest alterations in aspect, soil conditioning and pruning can determine a plants vigour, health and lifespan hugely. My blogs and online assistance should motivate and interest even the most amateur of green fingered people. As my ex partner used to say "it's green isn't it"?