Spokane County Extension

Garden - Lawn - Landscape


If your lawn is frozen, avoid walking over the same areas or you may find bald spots in the spring. A frozen lawn is not impervious to damage.

If heavy snow accumulates on your shrubs, brush it from the limbs with gentle upward sweeping motions.

If there is not too much snow, remove blown-in leaves and other debris from your yard and around your shrubs, especially roses and rhododendrons. This should help reduce unwanted pests and diseases when spring arrives.

If the temperature gets above freezing, pull out a hose and give evergreen shrubs and trees a good soaking to help alleviate the symptoms of winter burn, especially on rhododendrons.

Start planning your yard and garden projects for the upcoming year. Use the winter landscape as a blank slate and make plans to revitalize your yard and garden.

If your foundation plants are getting old and overgrown consider replacing them with some newer varieties or with native plants.  Junipers and arborvitaes are the evergreen standbys but also look into barberry, boxwood winter creeper, Oregon grape, hardy hollies, rhododendrons, red twig dogwood, and Otto Luyken laurel. These take some pruning but the novelty is worth it. Keep each plant's fertilizer and water needs in mind as you plan.


Perennial flowers give continuous color and texture to gardens and yards. Plan for bloom time and color, height, spread, and sunny or shaded areas. Try to select perennials that have an extended bloom time. It is a good idea to place early blooming flowers close to the house. Viewing will most likely be done through a window. Later blooming plants can be placed farther out in the landscape where a stroll through the yard will show them to their best advantage.

Now is a good time to plan your vegetable and annual gardens. Consider building raised beds for easier maintenance and less water use. Vegetables and annual flowers need to be planted on a schedule. Consult seed catalogs, gardening books and Extension publications for seeding and transplanting schedules.

Check into gardening clubs, plant societies or other organizations for gardeners. Meeting other gardeners and exchanging ideas is always fun, particularly in the non-gardening months.

Keep a sharp lookout for trouble on your indoor plants. When they are in a confined area, the trouble will be intensified. Dust the leaves of house plants with a damp, clean, soft cloth. Don’t use leaf shines, which may clog the leaf pores. Water sparingly during the winter and don't fertilize.



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