In the January Garden


The middle of January can be bleak, to say the least. Who wants to garden in cold, wet weather? As passionate as I am about plants, I am not a hardy winter soul; I’d much rather paint and write and let the yard go until sunny spring days.

Force yourself! Each day, instead of shoving the dog out the door when you get home from work, go out with him. Keep small pruning shears and old gloves in your coat pocket. Pick just one plant to prune. (Any more than that can be overwhelming when you'd rather be sitting by the fire. If, after that one, you want more, go to it!)
One plant a day will get the yard in shape by the time the daffodils bloom. Just 15 minutes is about all it takes. You’ll be surprised what a mood lifter it can be when a bit of Vitamin D soaks in and you get some exercise and fresh air. Too cold to stay out? Then, by all means go back in after that one plant is done.

Try it, you’ll like it! Come spring, the bushes and yard will be tidy and you can spend more time tending to sweet flowers and bird watching.

TIP OF THE WEEK: As you prune a bush or tree a day, lay the clippings under that same bush in a pile. Wait until a sunny day when you have more time to gather the piles from multiple bushes  to recycle.


JANUARY GARDEN CHORES:

Prune dormant fruit trees.

Plant any bulbs that you didn’t get to in the fall. (throw away any soft, molded ones.) You’d be surprised how most will still come up and flower later in the spring or summer.

Shear off grasses if there are green shoots starting to show and if the birds have eaten the seed heads.

Plan your vegetable and flower garden. Buy seed packets now, as some of the unusual or popular seeds are hard to find during planting season.

Scatter wood stove or fireplace ash over alkaline loving plants, such as iris and lawns.

Clean bird houses for the early birds that start to nest soon. Keep feeders clean and full. Set out suet cakes for winter energy.

2 comments:

Shari said...

Makes me want to garden. OK, I'm going to try it.

Anonymous said...

THANKS FOR THE INSPIRATION, THOUGHTS AND ILLUSTRATIONS THAT WARM THE SOUL! I'M ENJOYING WINTER BUT LOOKING FORWARD TO SPRING AND IT'S SO FUN TO LOOK AHEAD WITH YOUR HELP!