Putting the garden to bed for winter

A Massachusetts newspaper has given readers some advice on putting the garden to bed for the winter.

With windy, rainy and often frosty or snowy weather affecting most of the north-east of the country throughout the colder months, the Holbrook Sun and Patriot Ledger suggested a number of steps be taken to prepare.

Summer bulbs such as dahlias, elephant ears, caladiums and cannas should be carefully dug up and stored in an airy, dark place where they are unlikely to be affected by the cold for a few days.

Dead foliage and soil should be removed from the bulb, before they are stored in breathable bas made of plastic or paper.

They can also be stored in wooden crates, laundry baskets and bushel baskets lined with newspaper and filled with peat moss, perlite, coarse vermiculite or sawdust, the newspaper advised.

Potted plants can be protected throughout winter by storing them in a garage or greenhouse, although gardeners wishing to keep their plants in dormancy should ensure they do not become too warm.

Meanwhile, the News Sentinel recently explained that brown leaf tips in house plants can be caused by low humidity, salty soil or poor root health.