Snow Removal – Protect Your Landscaping

sod replacement bramptonFor those of us Canadians who don’t live on the West Coast, snow is a fact of life during the winter months.  And with snow comes the effort needed to get it off our sidewalks and driveways. But indiscriminate snow removal can cause damage to your plant beds, trees and other softscaped areas.  In this article we’ll go over some tips on snow removal while protecting your landscaping.

Protect Your Landscaping

The main snow removal factors that can damage your landscaping are the weight of the snow, salts and other chemical de-icers and physical damage caused by snow removal equipment.

Snow Dispersal

Although it’s not always possible, you should try to avoid piling snow onto your lawn or other places where plants will be growing in the spring.  Large piles of snow can damage grass and plant beds and prevent them from getting an early start in the following year. If you can’t help but create large piles of snow, once the weather starts warming up or the sun starts shining in earnest, it’s best to try and spread the snow around to allow it to melt rather than leaving an iceberg in the middle of your lawn until summer.

Salt And Chemical De-Icers

Salt and other de-icers have been proven to be bad for the environment, but sometimes they’re the only way to make sidewalks and walkways safe for passage.  If you can avoid using salt and chemical de-icers your lawn and plant beds will thank you for it. Try using sand, gravel or kitty litter instead. If you remove the snow as soon as it falls you’ll also reduce the chances for ice to accumulate in the first place.  To prevent damage to your landscaping, avoid planting sensitive plants near sidewalks, roads and driveways. And if you’re shoveling areas that have been salted try to avoid throwing the snow onto areas where plants will be growing.

Equipment Damage

A lot of damage to lawns and plant beds happens when snow removal equipment runs over these areas.  You can avoid this by creating borders or setting up markers to denote where the pavement ends and the garden begins.  Place your gardening beds far enough back from the pavement to reduce risk of damage. And avoid piling snow up onto areas where you want your plants to be growing come spring.