You’ve probably already noticed the effects of Storm Ciarán as the storm batters the south coast of the UK.
The rain and strong winds have caused an amber alert in multiple towns and cities across the UK today, with the Met Office saying the weather “could result in a danger to life” in certain areas.
If you’re wondering what all this has to do with your garden, the Met Office says that “flying debris” and fallen trees are particularly dangerous under these conditions.
Timothy Greene, gardening expert at iCANLAWN, says the period before winds truly batter your garden “is a good time to put any garden furniture away, or at least move it to a hard standing area” (if it’s safe to go outside where you are, of course – check local weather updates for your area).
He’s also shared some other tips to make sure your garden is as healthy as possible after all this heavy rainfall.
Beware of waterlogging
Waterlogging can cause soil to become hard and compacted, making it difficult for plants to establish roots in the ground.
And Greene says that stepping on your lawn after a heavy rainfall can make the problem worse.
“If the heavy rain has already started, keep off your grass as much as possible. Walking over an area that’s waterlogged will force the air out of the soil and when this eventually dries it will be heavily packed together. This can cause stunted growth in the summer,” he says.
Damaged grass blades can also cause fungal problems, the gardening pro says.
“We wouldn’t advise mowing your lawn during heavy rain either. Wait for the rain to subside and for a dry day instead, making sure your mower is on the highest setting,” he adds.
Garden ornaments should also be removed before heavy winds hit – basically, remove anything that could be lifted up by winds that could reach as high as 70mph (providing it’s safe to do so, of course).
We’re set for a wet, windy month, so Greene has shared further advice you can act on when the weather calms down a little.
“To combat [waterlogging], spike the surface down to at least 30mm with a garden fork, then move it forward and backward a little. It’s best to do this before the lawn gets too wet, so keep an eye on the forecast where you live,” he says.
Stay safe during the storm – and get those garden chairs and parasols secured now if it’s calm enough to do so.