Our next Gardening Tips will be for February. We hope you find these topical tips, courtesy of our Chairman, useful!
The garden might not seem inviting at this time of year but there are some things you can do which will help you get ready for the busy season ahead:
• Cut lawns if possible on a dry day with the mower blades set as high as possible.
• Take any opportunity you can to clean and wash greenhouse glass and equipment in readiness for the busy times ahead. Remember to open greenhouse vents on warm days.
• Check that the roots of shrubs and trees have not been loosened by the wind. If necessary firm the soil. Check stakes and ties and provide windbreaks for shrubs if necessary. If the soil isn’t too wet it’s a good time to move dormant shrubs.
• Now is a good time to plan your summer bedding displays. Look through seed and plant catalogues and decide what you want to plant, thinking carefully about colour schemes and the heights of different plants.
• Check plants in winter containers. Make sure they are not too dry or waterlogged. Pick off any dead flowers to encourage further flowering.
• If it’s too cold or wet to get out in the garden stay in the shed and clean your garden tools, mowers etc. A little care and attention now will make life easier for you later.
• If you are growing vegetables make sure you have all the seeds you need for the coming season. Stand seed potatoes on end in a light place to encourage sprouting. Plant out shallots and make early sowings of peas and lettuce for harvest in May.
• Keep the garden clean to help reduce problems with pests and diseases – pick off any yellowing leaves from sprouts and broccoli plants.
• Check stored dahlia tubers for any signs of decay. Cuts away any parts which are rotten and keep them stored in a frost-free place.
• Plants lily bulbs three or four to an 8 inch pot to provided a summer display for the patio.
• If you need the exercise or want to keep warm turn over your compost heap to make sure that it is rotting evenly.