January Gardening Reminders 2023

January Gardening Reminders 2023

January is the perfect month for planning out your garden activities and planning ahead for 2023; it is also an excellent month to do your winter pruning and planting while roots remain dormant.

Prepare the ground for planting roses; if the ground is wet or sticky, delay planting until conditions improve. ‘Heel in’ newly purchased bare root roses until conditions are suitable.

Check stored dahlia tubers, and place them in a bucket of tepid water overnight if they have shrivelled. Cut out rotten areas of the tuber and treat wounds with a dusting of flowers of sulphur.

Thin out dead and diseased branches from established trees and shrubs. Winter prune wisterias by cutting back young shoots to within 7.5cm of old wood.

Continue to plant new fruit trees and bushes when conditions allow and apply a 12cm thick mulch of well-rotted compost to the root zone, allowing a 10cm space between compost and the trunk or stems to prevent future stem rot.

Do not let ice form on the surface of concrete pools, as it may expand when thick and could damage the pool sides.

Take root cuttings of a wide range of plant species by lifting the root system and selecting a few roots the thickness of a little finger and 8-10cm long. Cut the top horizontally and the base diagonally to prevent confusion. Plant in the compost a couple of cms below the surface and cover with approx 2 cm of sharp sand—place in a cold frame or frost-free glasshouse for the rest of the winter. New shoots should begin to appear in early spring.

Mid-winter is the best time to take chrysanthemum cuttings as they root easily.

Prune-established fruit trees other than damsons and cherries. Prune newly planted fruit trees to shape and reduce leading shoot leaves by half.

Dead-head winter flowering pansies to ensure they continue to flower freely.

If you need to move a shrub which has outgrown its space, dig around the plant with a vertical spade to a depth of 45-60cm and then use the spade to cut under the roots from all sides until the rootball is free. Ease a piece of thick polythene under the root system and drag it out of the hole to its new location. Once firmly in place, fill back the space around the rootball, firm the soil by treading it in, and water thoroughly to eliminate air pockets.

Spray fruit trees and bushes with a tar-oil winter wash to kill overwintered aphid eggs. This also kills moss and lichen. Do not spray in frosty or windy weather, and protect evergreens or lawns in the area with ground sheets as they are subject to being burned by the spray.

Prune out old fruiting canes on autumn fruiting raspberries down to soil level. Remove a quarter of the old branches to the base to encourage strong new growth.

Before clearing leaves or forking over bare areas, check for bulbs that have started growing and are just below the surface.

Check the plant labels on plants around the garden; many will have faded or broken.

Now the garden is bare, take an objective look around from all angles and consider if an ornament, seating or a structure of some sort would add interest.

If hard weather is forecast, wrap up tender plants such as Agapanthus in bracken or straw for added protection.

Mark areas where bulbs come into flower with twigs so that future cultivations can be made safely. They will be easier to find if you wish to move them at a later date.




Posted 11th Jan 3:45pm