Washington DC winters tend to be fairly mild. Being in zone 7, DC enjoys the opportunity to have many winter days that can be enjoyed outside. Snow is also is not as common as other parts of the country. Many of our hardy landscape plants also take this time of year to bloom. The blooming plants put on a surreal display with vibrant colors even in January.
Winter is a time of planning for the year but there is also much that can be done to ensure a successful year.
Now is a great time for pruning! With many trees and shrubs bare, the over all structure of the trunks and branches can be inspected for proper form.
Woody Trees and shrubs can be planted through out the winter if the soil is not frozen.
Hardy perennial plants can also be lifted and divided at this time. Since these plants are dormant, you don't need to worry about breaking shoots or flower stalks.
Spring flowering bulbs can also be planted all season long. Good news for those who thought they missed their chance in the fall.
Now is the time to switch your tropical themed containers to wintery ones. Many hardy perennials and annuals bloom through out the season. Containers should be placed in areas near traffic in and out of the home, or in window viewing areas.
Lawns that are mainly used for display should not be walked on this time of year. The soils tend to be softer and damage can be done more easily.
However, many yard repairs can be done and sod can be laid at this time. It is probably better to do so as well. Water needs for the grass are not as demanding as in summer. A blanket of snow will also thoroughly prepare your lawn for spring.
With the landscape bare it is easier to identify where water is not draining properly. Now is a great time to install rain gardens, French drains, dry creek beds, and any other proper drainage system.