What to Know About Getting Your Landscape Ready for Winter

One vital part of ensuring your facility’s grounds are set up for success this winter is hiring a landscape maintenance services company to take care of any existing issues and prep your property for the elements. After all, you want to avoid potentially costly issues that result from landscape neglect, especially if you’ve invested a fair amount of funds toward landscaping your grounds just a few months prior.

If you’re running a high-traffic area like a store, educational facility, or industrial complex, you want your staff, students, and customers to safely walk and drive on your grounds. Come spring, you don’t want to worry about cracks and potholes developing over the winter months due to poor irrigation systems that allow water to collect. And you don’t want all of your beautifully landscaped flora to wither away in the winter months or sustain root damage because they weren’t properly cared for before the snow and ice rolled in.

What Are Some Common Issues that Could Impact Your Landscaping During Winter?

Just like during all of the other seasons, there are a host of threats to keep top of mind during winter months that could cause damage to your beautifully landscaped grounds. For one, the freeze-thaw cycle can expose your plants’ roots, the precious source of the water and nutrients they need to thrive. Frozen soil can spell disaster for your flora, diminishing your plants’ and trees’ ability to absorb water (leading to dehydration). Add to this the elements of harsh, dry winds, heavy snowfall on leaves and branches, and cracked tree bark from ice and even winter sun – and you can see just how much you’ll have to keep in mind during winter.

One common misconception is that you should stop watering your landscaping during the winter. But this really only applies if temperatures in your area are dropping below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. With all the drying and dehydrating forces we mentioned above, it’s crucial to keep your plants and shrubs supplied with the water they need to survive the winter. This is especially important as early thaws can “trick” certain species of plants into breaking dormancy. When plants grow before winter is over (i.e., before another snowfall occurs), it can mean slim chances of survival come spring.

Don’t forget about pests, either. While chilly months might kill off species of harmful insects, plenty of other intruders can wreak havoc on your gorgeous landscaping, including squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits, groundhogs, deer, and other wildlife. While pest control is still a service you’ll want to keep up with during winter, the trick is not to overdo it with chemical pesticides or use the wrong types of products. Working with a knowledgeable landscaper who can advise you on what to expect and how to mitigate pest damage is the best route to take.

Here are some other helpful things to keep in mind for your facility’s landscape as winter approaches.

Choose the Right Flora From the Start

High-quality landscaping is a crucial part of facility management. If you’re responsible for your facility’s general upkeep (as well as aesthetic considerations), you’ll want to make the best choices when it comes to landscaping – this means starting early and choosing wisely.

Every climate offers its own unique benefits and challenges for landscaping. Florida, a perennial state, has constantly blooming plants and flowers that blossom at different times of the year. If your facility is in Tennessee or North Carolina, you can expect to have varying success with certain plant life depending on your elevation and precipitation levels. If you’re in a more mountainous region, heartier plants and trees will be your best options for landscaping, while warmer coastal areas can get away with palms and tropical flowers that can withstand winter.

When making your landscaping selections, don’t go it alone. Choose a team of subject matter experts who can best advise you on plant species that can thrive during your specific winter months, as well as optimal plant placement in terms of sunlight and irrigation. And don’t wait until fall or winter to get your landscaping in shape. Work with this team in the spring or early summer so your plants are well-rooted to sustain chillier months. Finally, ensure your landscaping has the right mulching patterns for the best chances of survival, and acquire any burlap wrapping or heat lamps you may need to keep plants alive during the winter.

Ensure Your Irrigation System Is Functioning Properly

A properly functioning irrigation system is non-negotiable when it comes to risk mitigation for your landscape. The majority of damage to landscapes in the winter months comes from the freeze-thaw cycle that takes place with excess precipitation. Even if your region doesn’t receive snow, excess rain or moisture can leak into cracks in your sidewalk pavement and expand when it freezes during chilly winter nights. This can cause a host of problems, including buckling, potholes, and otherwise uneven surfaces for your occupants to walk on.

Additionally, if your irrigation system is faulty, the roots of your carefully planted landscaping may suffer damage during the winter. Hiring a knowledgeable lawn maintenance service is key to preventing rotting or dying flora due to poor irrigation, inadequate watering, or overwatering of landscapes and planters. There’s nothing worse than spending thousands on a stunning array of flora in the spring, only to have to replace it the following spring because of poor irrigation during winter.

But choosing the right service provider is just as important as choosing the right service. If you’re looking for LEED certification, look no further than The Budd Group. We can help ensure your irrigation system meets the highest standards for energy efficiency and environmental responsibility. As a U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) member, we are dedicated to protecting and preserving the natural environments we’ve been entrusted to water, tend, and maintain.

Select a Service Provider for Snow and Ice Removal

While the Southeast isn’t necessarily known for harsh winters of dumping snow, this region certainly gets plenty of precipitation during winter months (as well as freezing temperatures in many places). The mountainous zones may receive ample snowfall, while cities and coastal areas are sure to deal with icy roads and sidewalks. Some regions may even experience drought during the winter. Varying temperatures across the many climates of the southeast mean that you’d better work with a team who knows your area and exactly what you can expect during these chilly months.

One of the best ways you can care for your landscape – outside of preparing it for colder weather and preventing winter-related damage – is to remove snow and ice promptly and effectively where they accumulate. When it comes to winter-related property maintenance services like snow and ice removal, you’ll want to look for a one-stop shop – a provider who can deliver the timely salting, shoveling, and plowing you need. Hire this service at the start of the season; don’t wait for the first snowfall or icy morning to get a snow removal partner in place.

When you’re looking into snow removal services, however, it’s imperative that you hire a team with knowledge of landscaping. After all, many snow removal companies are on a mission to do one thing: remove the snow – not necessarily protect your beautifully landscaped grounds. Find experts who are mindful of your landscaping and communicate your concerns about flora damage. You’ll be thankful you did when spring rolls around and your lovely plants are still intact!

Contact The Budd Group to See How We Can Help Your Grounds Stay Pristine This Winter

Selecting a facility maintenance service that has extensive experience in your region is crucial. You’ll want to ensure that the landscape maintenance team you’re working with knows your area’s seasons and all the elements that winter will bring. This team should be knowledgeable about temperatures and precipitation, common issues and how to mitigate them, and what types of flora can best survive in the area based on your climate.

The Budd Group has been serving clients throughout the Southeast since 1963. When you work with us, you’ll receive a team of subject matter experts who can talk through the specific risks that winter weather might pose for your facility. We’ll answer all of your questions and perform the work to the highest standards. We have an extensive list of service offerings under our “landscaping services” umbrella, which means that the work need not stop when winter is over.

Whether it’s snow and ice removal in the winter, soil testing and sod replacement in the spring, mowing, trimming, edging, and blowing in the summer, or debris removal and cleanup in the fall – we’ll keep your grounds looking clean and cared for throughout the year. We also offer our “Make It Right” guarantee, meaning that we vow to meet or exceed your expectations in the delivery of high-quality facility support solutions. If we do not deliver the contracted services to your satisfaction, we will “Make It Right” – it’s one of our core values.

Contact us today to find out more about what we do and how we can serve you this winter.

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