Now’s the time to plan for the year ahead and think about what seeds and plants you’ll need. Get out into the garden on dry days and check your winter protection such as stakes, ties and supports are still doing their job. Make sure you put out food for birds and leave some garden areas uncut, a little longer, to provide shelter for wildlife in your garden. Here’s our top January gardening tips.
Top Gardening Tips for January
- Recycle your Christmas tree by shredding it for mulch. We also have a few more ideas HERE.
- Clean pots and greenhouses ready for spring. It is essential to clean and disinfect areas and items you intent to grow from before you start as this will minimise the risk of diseases affecting your plants.
- Ventilate your greenhouse on dry sunny days
- Tidy your garden shed and inspect any garden tools that might need repaired or sharpened
- Dig over any vacant plots/bare soil areas that you haven’t already. Soil cultivation is important for the health of your garden and also good exercise for you! Avoid digging round plants to avoid damaging roots.
- Lawns can be prone to damage at this time of year. This is a good time to repair lawn edges with turves cut from other areas of the garden. Areas suffering from dieback from tread might benefit from a stepping stone to allow access across the lawn without causing further damage.
- Check any stored summer flowers tubers such as Dahlia, Begonia and Canna. Check for rotting and drying out.
- Prune apple and pear trees – this is the time to do it as the trees are bare of leaves. Aim to remove 10%-20% of the overall canopy in one winter, working around the tree evenly. Remember the more your prune , the stronger the re-growth
- Plan your vegetable crop rotations for the coming season
- Start forcing rhubarb. To do this cover the crown with a traditional forcing jar, bucket or upturned pot in late winter, ensuring that all light is blocked out. When stems reach the top of the container, they are ready for harvesting.
- Keep putting out food and water for birds and wildlife in your garden. Don’t forget to take part in Big Garden Birdwatch at the end of January. Find out more HERE.
- Ensure houseplants have sufficient light, which they need light to carry on over the winter. They are best moved to sunny windowsill until March – but don’t leave houseplants on windowsills behind the curtains on frosty nights, especially if your windows are not double glazed.
Grow yourself healthy
Gardening really is good for you! By choosing the right plants we can design gardens that encourage wildlife to drop in for food, water and shelter, or even take up residence. Developing an all-year-round wildlife-friendly garden satisfies our own creativity and feeling of achievement, bringing us outside and closer to nature to reduce stress and improve our wellbeing. Contact with plants and the soil also enhances our health and boosts the immune system, too.
To visit the HTA’s January, ‘Grow yourself healthy’ page click HERE.