DENVER — As winter closes in, take steps to protect your collection of patio pots.
Terra cotta pots are most vulnerable to winter damage. The walls of clay pots are porous and absorb moisture. As that water freezes and thaws, it can degrade the clay or crack the pot.
Empty clay pots
Empty clay pots and turn them upside down.
I cover mine with a plastic saucer. It's even better to cover them with a tarp or store them in a shed or garage.
Glazed ceramic pots are less vulnerable to cold but they can also be damaged. The big threat is to pots with a bulge. When the soil inside freezes, it expands and pushes out. This can crack the pot. Emptying these glazed pots is prudent.
Save the soil
I store it in large trash cans with a lid. The roots and branches will break down over winter and enrich the soil.
Add fresh soil and compost in the spring and you'll have an ideal potting mix to fill up your pots all over again.
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