Met Office issues snow warnings for parts of UK

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Winter is in full swing, with freezing temperatures and stormy conditions bracing the nation. While parts of the UK have already battled heavy snow, the unpredictable British winter means snow could arrive at any moment. Protecting your garden from ice-cold sheets of white is crucial for your plants – and this is how to do it.

Waking up to a blanket of snow covering the garden is a rare occurrence for most Brits.

When it is expected, preparation is key to shelter your plants from the icy weight of clustered snowflakes.

Preparing your garden for snowfall is as simple as covering plants and keeping them away from the elements – but it’s easier said than done when you are caught off guard.

Evie Lane, Gardening Expert from Primrose told “It’s important to note that a day of snow is not likely to do much harm to plants.

“The real danger with snow is the weight of it on your plants – especially if they’re small and newly planted.”

How to rescue your garden from unexpected snow

Even an inch or two of snow could cause actual damage to smaller, newly planted vegetables.

To avoid having to replant parts of your garden entirely, there are several quick fixes which can be done to rescue your plants.

Remove damaged growth

Salvaging your plants from unforgiving snow should always begin with the removal of damaged growth.

Once the threat of any more snow has passed, weed out damaged parts of your plants by cutting them back to bare, healthy shoots.

Pruning will stimulate growth while preventing ruined compromised foliage from spreading.

Snow can be unforgiving to new growth, so act quickly to stop any winter damage from spreading.

Shake branches

Snow can cause several issues for growing crops, shrubs, and trees.

The most common kinds of snow damage include:

  • Weighed down branches
  • Weak branches which can snap easily
  • Stunted growth of blossoms on fruit trees

Removing the threat of snow from your plants is as simple as shaking off the icy white residue.

Give tree branches and shrubs a gentle shake to dislodge settled snow and let melted droplets drip from the leaves.

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Clear your greenhouse

Bedding plants and pots aren’t the only parts of your garden that are at risk of snow damage.

Greenhouses should also be taken care of by removing settled snow from the roof.

Using a broom, brush any remaining snow from the roof to keep your sheltered plants exposed to precious sunlight.

You should also keep the exterior of your greenhouse free from fallen leaves and dirt, which can make it harder for your plants to absorb their daily dose of vitamin D.

The weight and changing temperature of the snow can also cause cracks to appear in the glass.

Firm plants back into the ground

Newly planted crops are the most vulnerable to frost damage, which can leave fresh roots exposed.

After heavy snowfall, firm younger plants back into the soil and add a smaller layer of compost to improve their drainage – an additional layer will protect them, should another frost return.

Stake split stems

Cracked and split stems can be salvaged by taping split ends together to fuse them as they heal.

You will need to pull the split stems together before taping them, then attach them to a stake to encourage re-growth.

Patience is key when repairing damaged plants, so don’t be put off if you are not seeing results straight away.

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