January in your garden – getting ready for Spring
Our gardens were our solace in the first lock down last year – they kept us busy and rewarded us with the blossoms and fruits of our labour. You might be struggling now, in this new lockdown, looking at your dark and frozen garden with longing for brighter days. Even though it is cold and dark, there are still some jobs you can do in your garden at the moment to get through lockdown, and set yourself up for spring.
- Start to clear away collapsed and soggy perennials, fallen leaves and any debris from storms such as broken branches all of which are ideal for composting
- Deadhead Winter pansies regularly to keep your winter containers flowering longer
- Prune roses while they are still dormant. You can also prune woody plants right now, like wisteria and buddleia, as well as your deciduous hedging. Make sure your secateurs is sharp and clean
- Check your tools – make sure they are clean, rust free and safe and replace any that need to be retired
- Weeding – get out and start pulling weeds. Not only will it keep you warm on these chilly days, it will also give you a head start once the weather starts to warm up
- Scrub patios, paths and paving – mosses and algae can build up over the wet, dark months. Use a moss remover to make things easier
- Clean your greenhouse glass to make sure seedlings get maximum light – the same goes for grow houses and cold frames
Don’t fancy braving the elements just yet? That’s ok – January is a great time to start planning for the season ahead. Perhaps you would like to add some extra beds? Try growing your own food? Or would love to have a cut flower garden in place this summer? Whatever your garden dream is, January is the time to start planning and sourcing what you need.
- Plan your plot – are you going to move beds, create new beds or maybe add a water feature this year? Now is the time to make decisions so you can prepare
- What flowers would you like to grow – have you got a particular colour scheme in mind? What seeds have you left from last summer? Take stock and order any seeds you need to grow your dream garden
- Draw up a sowing calendar so you know what needs to be planted when
- Make sure you have all the seed trays, small pots and plant labels you need – clean them and check them for damage so they are ready for sowing and potting on
- Lay out seed potatoes in a cool dark place to chit or sprout, in preparation for planting in February and March
- Plant bare-roots plants – roses and hedging, provided the ground isn’t frozen.
- Dreaming of sweet summer berries? Now is a good time to plant raspberries, gooseberries, blackberries and blueberries. Just make sure the ground is not frozen.
- Plant Hellebores to add beauty to your garden instantly.
- Sow sweet peas in your seed trays if you have a bright warm window sill.
- Like it spicey? Now’s the time to sow chilli seeds to make sure you have a crop to harvest mid to late summer.
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