Gardening expert shares plant care tips to remember this winter

We're finally getting a taste of winter here in Houston, and if you want to make sure your plants and gardens survive the season - Houston's garden girl, Jen Mcdonald, is here with her expert tips to remember. She recommends watering flower beds, raised beds, trees & shrubs. The soil is warmer than the air temperature and your plants dehydrate easily during a freeze. Do your fingertip test, if the soil feels moist- you’re perfect! If you know that a freeze is inevitable, you’ll want to do a heavy water beforehand! Also, now’s the time to prepare for the next freeze, so purchase frost covers or farm grade plastic sheeting to cover plants and garden hoops to help protect plants inside raised beds.

HOUSTON – We’re finally getting a taste of winter here in Houston, and if you want to make sure your plants and gardens survive the season - Houston’s garden girl, Jen Mcdonald, is here with her expert tips to remember.

What to do after freezing temperatures?

Water flower beds, raised beds, trees & shrubs. The soil is warmer than the air temperature and your plants dehydrate easily during a freeze.

What can you plant now that will survive the cooler months?

Kale, cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, radish, beets, oregano, thyme, rosemary, sage, lettuce, arugula

How much should you “water” outdoor plants during winter months?

Once a week or even once every other week. Do your fingertip test, if the soil feels moist- you’re perfect!

If you know that a freeze is inevitable, you’ll want to do a heavy water beforehand!

What are some of the most common mistakes plant owners make during the winter months and how can we avoid them?

Planting the wrong things. It’s important now to focus on our cool weather crops - (think brassicas, root vegetables and hardy herbs).

Also, skipping out on compost. Remember, adding a layer of compost or mulch will help protect the soil and keep it healthy throughout winter.

How can we prepare for the next freeze?

Now’s the time to prepare for the next freeze, so purchase frost covers or farm grade plastic sheeting to cover plants and garden hoops to help protect plants inside raised beds.

Frost covers or farm grade plastic sheeting are good investments - both of which can be found on Amazon.

Garden hoops are useful in raised beds - you can make your own from PVC pipe, or purchase them as hoops, which you can then drape your frost cover over.

For more plant and gardens tips, click HERE to connect with McDonald.


About the Author:

Heather Kansteiner is a supervising producer for Houston Life. She has been part of the team since the show launched in 2016. She loves all things Houston and enjoys sharing what makes the city a great place to live, work and play.