- Get stuck into those seed catalogues and get buying the seeds for the coming season, if you didn't take advantage of all the sales at the end of last season.
- Take a look at your garden, and start thinking about any areas that may need redeveloping or revitalizing; in many cases this can take an entire year, depending on the appropriate time to move or plant things.
TO PLANT OUT
- Bare rooted plants such as fruit trees can be planted from now on, to get a good head start.
- Any winter vegetables that are ready to come out can be dropped onto the dinner table; crops such as kale, cauliflower, sprouts, and cabbage are ready; for details of more, check out our Seasonal in January article to find out what you can harvest now.
- Rain and snow in winter can wash away many nutrients in the soil; keep beds covered with leafmould, autumn leaves, or spent compost.
- Its best to constantly weed when you can; the roots of perennial roots take hold over the winter and make them harder to pull the next year.
- Protect any vulnerable pots outside by wrapping them in bubble wrap or hessian sacking. It also helps to group pots together in a sheltered corner of the garden.
- Knock any heavy snow fall from trees or shrubs to prevent branches getting damaged.
- It's a good time of year to start any garden projects; most plants are dormant this time of year, and easy to move without doing any serious damage. With not much else to do in the garden, there's plenty of time free to get some serious time spent on those projects.
- If you haven't yet done so, now is one of the last chances to prune your fruit trees and bushes; the dormant buds will soon burst into life. This is particularly important with cherries and plums. Blackcurrants and raspberries fruit on the previous seasons wood, so it's important to cut out as much wood that's older than a year.
IN THE GREENHOUSE
- Keep glass clean, and the greenhouse tidy; rotting leaves and debris will speed up the build-up of fungus, mould, pests and diseases; also ensure there is plenty of ventilation when possible, even if it's just a case of using a fan to circulate air and stop it becoming stagnant. If necessary, burn a sulphur candle to kill off any pests and diseases.
- Clean out any pots and trays now; wash them with soapy water and rinse, and they'll be clean and ready to use for the new growing season.
- Insulate any outside taps to protect them against freezing.