Lonicera fragrantissima
(Winter honeysuckle)


With the arrival of the New Year heralded by very low temperatures, check out things to take into account when it’s frosty in the garden, and ways to protect plants against the cold, in the December and November pages.

There are still jobs to be done around the garden when weather allows, not forgetting any plants you may have in the greenhouse or indoors

And when it’s too cold or wet – plan for the new season in the warm.

Wishing you success & enjoyment with your gardening in 2021!

Click on any picture or text link for more information 

The final pruning of wisteria should be done in January or February.

Cut back last season’s new shoots to two or three buds, whether or not they were shortened in the summer

Forcing rhubarb can be started this month: cover the crown with straw, then put a forcing pot or up-turned tall bucket over the top to exclude the light.

Make sure you keep slugs and snails at bay.

A winter wash for fruit trees & bushes can help prevent pest damage in spring & summer. Be sure to choose a dry, calm day not threatened by frost.

Remove the jaded old leaves from hellebores – this will allow the new flowers to be displayed to better effect and will also clear away possible sources of hellebore leaf spot.

Late January is not too early to start sowing tomatoes, aubergines and peppers in a heated greenhouse or conservatory, or on a warm window sill – they need a long growing period and this will give earlier crops.

Lily bulbs
can be planted in containers and, during mild spells, even in borders .

Improve drainage of heavy soils by working in lots of organic matter. Grit is only effective when used in conjunction with this.

When gardening on wet soils work from a plank of wood, rather than treading on the bed, to avoid compacting the soil.

Winter pansies: watch out for downy mildew and black spot on winter pansies. Remove any infected leaves – any plants that are too badly affected should be destroyed.

Inspect any stored fruit regularly, to remove any rotting ones and prevent the infection from spreading.

Likewise, inspect any stored Dahlia, Canna and Begonia tubers that you have lifted, for any signs of rot or drying out.

Thinking of planting fruit trees?
Coxes Orange Pippin apples on treeIt’s important to choose varieties that will pollinate each other, so that they can give a good crop.
Click to find out more and to access easy-to-use pollination compatibility checkers

Also, check back to December as many of those items are still relevant now.

Wildlife in the garden

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