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How To Wrap a Shrub For Winter

Frozen shrub

“Brace yourself, winter is coming.”

It’s no surprise. Every year winter comes back and steals the sunshine and beautiful warmth of summer. Not only that, but it can also destroy your landscape. Whether you have a vibrant Formal landscape, a lush English Garden Style landscape, or an undemanding Woodland landscape – it’s so important to protect your landscape from winter or you’ll be left with a yard full of dead plants and shrubs come spring. 

One of the best ways to protect your landscape is by wrapping your plants. In this blog, we’ll explain why wrapping your shrubs is important and exactly how to wrap a shrub for winter. We’ll also give you four pro tips to provide extra protection for your plants! 

Why Wrap Your Shrubs?

Certain plants — like ​​Japanese maples, boxwoods, junipers, and arborvitae — are especially vulnerable to the winter cold. If you want your landscape to have an easier transition back into spring, you need to wrap your shrubs! Here are a few reasons why it’s important to wrap your shrubs:

  • Keeps your shrubs warm
  • Reduces moisture loss
  • Prevents deer from eating your shrubs
  • Protects from damage caused by ice
  • Reduces salt damage

The bottom line is simple: If you don’t wrap your shrubs for winter you’ll have a lot of dead plants next spring. 

While some people might not mind replacing their plants every year, most families don’t want to spend that time and money every 12 months. For them, it’s far wiser to protect their landscape now and avoid the hassle of replanting later. That way, when the warm weather returns they’ll be able to spend their time enjoying spring instead of catering to new plants.

How To Wrap a Shrub For Winter

1. Wrap With Twine

Skein of rope twine on a white background.

Watch your local weather forecast. If it calls for heavy snow we recommend that you bind the branches of your shrubs with twine. You can find twine at your local hardware store. Start at the base of the shrub and work your way towards the top in a spiral pattern. When you are finished you should have a conical-shaped shrub that will catch less snow and thus have less damage.

2. Cover With A Burlap Sack

burlap hessian sacking on wooden plank board background

Once you are done wrapping your shrubs the next step is to cover them with burlap sacks. Burlap sacks aren’t the prettiest things to look at, but they offer great protection to your shrubs. They provide the best protection against cold, high winds and will even keep deer from getting to your shrubs.

3. Wrap Trunks With Tree Wraps

Human hands hug, wrap a tree. Contact man and nature, the concept of ecology. Productivity. Symbiosis

Frostbite and sunscald can be damaging to your shrubs. The primary way that they can cause damage to your shrubs is through the trunk. We recommend wrapping the trunks of your shrubs before the first hard freeze and unwrapping them after the last frost of spring. You can find tree wrap at your local hardware store.

This may be new to you, but hopefully you can see just how easy the process is. To help you estimate how much time you’ll spend wrapping, each shrub can take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes to fully wrap and prepare for winter. 

4 Pro Tips to Protect Your Shrubs In Winter

You now know the basics of wrapping your shrubs for winter! Below are some tips that will help you provide even more protection for your shrubs.

  1. Water your shrubs throughout the fall and up until the ground freezes
  2. Spread about 4 inches of bark mulch or leaves around the base of the shrubs to insulate the ground
  3. Spray anti-desiccant in November and repeat once a month throughout the winter (we recommend not spraying when the temperature drops below 40 degrees)
  4. For a large number of shrubs, apply the anti-desiccant using a garden pump sprayer

To Sum It All Up

Winter can damage your landscape, especially your shrubs. The best way to ensure your shrubs survive the harsh winter is to wrap them. The process is simple, can be done in a single day, and you only need four tools/materials to get it done right. 

We hope that you found this article informative and useful. You deserve to have an outdoor living space you love! That means protecting what you have and elevating it to the next level. If you are looking for guidance on how to elevate your outdoor living space, schedule a call with us today!