As the days grow shorter and colder and the nights draw in, heading out into the garden can seem a bit daunting, but a few hours spent tidying and preparing can lead to a lovely Spring display next year.

Here are a few tips on how to get your Winter garden ready for a vibrant New Year.

1. Looking ahead

Plant bulbs such as daffodils, tulips, crocus or grape hyacinths to ensure a magnificent Spring display. It is also a good time to take on a new project – such as creating a new border, planting new trees or setting your sights on a real garden makeover, and looking for that perfect summerhouse spot, which can be enjoyed come rain or shine.

2. Tidy, tidy, tidy

Autumn was the time to clean up and deadhead but don’t stop checking despite the fall in temperature. Pull up those final weeds and clear away fallen leaves before spreading a covering of compost, bark chips or manure to keep the soil in tiptop condition.

3. Green fingers

It is a good time to ventilate your greenhouse to make sure it is thoroughly dry before checking that your heaters work properly as the temperature starts to fall even further. You can also insulate with bubble wrap to prevent any heat escaping. It is also a good idea to insulate outside taps.

4. Tender loving care

It’s time to lift tender species and protect them from the frost, rain and strong winds that can wreak havoc. Tubers can be dug up, cleaned and stored in a cool place in trays of dry compost with just the crown visible ready for planting out in the Spring. If you cannot protect your plants in a greenhouse, it might be worth wrapping plants or pots.

5. Making a splash

Make sure you clear away all the leaves that have fallen into your pond before they affect your water quality. A ball floating around on your pond will delay freezing, whilst a water feature can prevent freezing altogether.

For more tips visit the RHS website.