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January Advice…

It’s cold, it’s wet, it’s January. At this time of year we tend to look out at the garden, cup of tea in hand, and just talk about it. But look, the evenings are already getting longer and the birds are chirping before eight o’clock in the morning. Spring is not far away.

The workload will be a lot more manageable when things really get crazy in March by getting as much done as possible at this time of year. Here are some tasks to ease you back into the garden, you’ll feel great afterwards!
Inspect the trees after the storms. Some younger trees may have come loose at the base or the stakes and ties may need to adjusted. Older trees may have damaged or cracked branches. If so cut them off, failure to do so is leaving them exposed to disease.

Remove dead foliage from herbaceous plants such as Crocosmia, Japanese Anemone and Rudbeckia. Be careful not to step on young bulbs coming up! The foliage can be added to the compost heap.

Dig over any vacant vegetable beds, if the weather allows. Spread well rotted manure or compost over beds. If you have rhubarb why not try “forcing it”. Place a large bucket or dustbin over the crown to encourage the fresh pink shoots from the darkness. Add some manure to help the process.

Prune and plant apple trees. Inspect poly tunnels for damage. Gather up last of fallen leaves and add to compost.
Now that wasn’t so bad, the garden is up and running for 2014.

Posted on 12th January 2014

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