Gardening tips for January

winter-garden-550px

Blimey, did somebody hide the first week of January down the back of the sofa? Where the blinders did it go? Apologies for this embarrassingly tardy gardening post – I promise to do better readers, honest [shuffles off to detention]. 

Snow might be on the forecast for Friday (brrr) but just think how bloomin’ lovely your garden will look come spring if you brave the frost now. One person who knows all about braving the cold outdoors is our lovely resident gardening guru Ellen Mary. Here are here gardening tips for Jjjjjanuary:

1. There’s no need to let your Christmas tree go to waste – there are many places to take your tree for recycling or, alternatively, shred it up to be used for garden mulch. You can also add it to your compost heap – it will take time to break down, mind, but will get there eventually!

christmas-tree-recycling-7

2. It’s a great time of year for pruning your fruit trees, so get to work on apple and pear trees along with gooseberries and autumn fruiting raspberries. Just imagine that lovely Gooseberry Fool or Eton Mess!

Prune your fruit trees now to enjoy the fruits of your labour come spring

Prune your fruit trees now to enjoy the fruits of your labour come spring

3. I really enjoy using recycled goods in the garden. Start collecting egg boxes and cardboard toilet roll holders throughout winter; they are perfect for chitting your potatoes before planting and for sowing sweet pea seeds.

Collect egg boxes for

Collect egg boxes during winter – they are perfect for chitting potatoes

4. Keep those green fingers moving by sowing your own Alfalfa sprouting seeds – they have a delicious and delicate pea taste and come packed with nutrients. You can use them in salads, soups and sandwiches, and can pick them within a couple of weeks of sowing.

Alfalfa sprouting seeds

Alfalfa sprouting seeds can be picked within a fortnight of sowing

5. Stop your ponds from freezing over by dropping tennis balls in the water to help keep it moving. If it does freeze over, lift the ball out to create a hole for creatures leave.

Throw tennis balls into your pond to stop them freezing over

Throw tennis balls into your pond to stop it freezing over

Ellen Mary is founder of No Fear Gardening, a monthly gardening club for amateurs. The next meeting is on 8 February where World leaders in classic roses, Peter Beales, will walk you through the A-Z of Roses, just in time for Valentine’s Day.

 

 

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