When it comes to trees, the best strategy starts during the planting season. Some plants simply hold up better to heavy snows. Planting your yard with the right trees can go a long way toward ensuring less damage after a winter storm. Conical evergreens are made for snowy weather. If you live in an area prone to snow, avoid deciduous trees that grow broad, rising canopies on top of comparatively weak trunks and shallow roots. Shrubs planted directly beneath the eaves of a house are especially vulnerable to snow and ice.
Of course, if your yard already contains a mixture of trees, one of the most basic strategies for avoiding heavy damage is to prune them before the snows strike. Take a look at our guide to pruning trees in advance of winter for tips. Pay special attention to trees with deep V-shaped sections, which are especially vulnerable to breakage. Smaller trees and shrubs can sometimes be protected by wrapping them in fabric or tying the branches to the trunk to prevent snow from exerting pressure on them individually. Remove the wrapping once the weather turns mild again.
Source: The Home Depot Garden Club