Despite the cold weather, January is an exciting month of preparation for keen gardeners! Here are our top gardening jobs for the month…
The all important planting season will be upon us before we know it! Get ready for it by tidying up your garden storage – whether it’s a box, a shed or a greenhouse.
Organise your seeds and make sure you have the tools and pots you’ll need.
With the cold weather we’re having, bird baths can quickly freeze over. Pour warm water over them every so often to make them accessible for garden visitors!
If you grow rhubarb in your garden or allotment, why not try forcing growth for an early harvest?
Cover your rhubarb plants with anything from terracotta pots to a plastic dustbin. Make sure to weight buckets or dustbins down to avoid them blowing over and causing damage to your plants.
Note: this should only be done to established rhubarb plants and not young plants.
Covering the plant will stop light from reaching it, which in turn encourages or ‘forces’ plants into early growth.
The rhubarb can then be harvested roughly 8 weeks later and used in cooking.
Are you looking to achieve a specific shape with your apple and pear trees? If so, now is the ideal time to prune them back.
Cutting some branches back will also help the plant to produce better fruit, as it will be channelling energy and resources into fewer branches.
Gardener’s World have an excellent guide – explaining how to prune efficiently here.
This is the best time to move dormant plants such as roses.
If a plant has outgrown the space it is in, or you would simply prefer to have it somewhere else – this can be really handy.
With roses and some shrubs, pruning back some overgrowth before digging roots out can be useful in ensuring the plant takes to its new location.
Dig in a ring shape around your plant – the size/radius of the ring will depend on the size and maturity of the plant.
Aim to loosen roots without causing too much damage.
Shake and brush off soil from the root ball before planting in a new location.
Frost can quickly damage and crack hoses, taps and hose attachments at this time of year.
Bring attachments inside away from the cold and consider buying a tap cover.
It’s time to loosen the ground up, dispose of weeds and old roots and generally prepare the ground for planting.
Start by simply digging and weeding – this can be quite a big task in itself.
When you have finished, consider enriching the soil by mixing in some new compost or fertiliser.
There is a range of composts for every garden and allotment – depending on how much space you have and what it is you would like to grow.
For more information, read our compost guide.
Garden prep in January isn’t all digging in the cold! Sit back with a hot drink and think about what you would like to grow in your garden this year.
If you have the time, why not take measurements your garden, beds and borders? Then, you can use graph paper to accurately plot our the space you have and work out what will fit where.
* all products mentioned in the blog were available at the time of writing