Happy new year everyone. I’m looking forward to another year of gardening, implementing lessons learned last year and starting with a nice blank canvas….at least that is what it looks like at the moment!
Believe it or not it was so mild and dry yesterday that I found myself in the garden tidying up the brassicas, chopping down the verbena that was still flowering well into December and emptying dead plants into the compost bins. Not what I would have expected to be doing in the first weekend in January!
So what are we supposed to be doing in January?
- Start drawing up plans for the coming year, crop rotation and what is going to go where, order seeds and plants.
- Tidy, tidy, tidy…cut back perennials, clear away plant debris, continue weeding, sort out the shed / greenhouse, clean pots and labels, check and maintain tools and garden furniture
- Clay soils can be dug over and left. Apparently the frost helps to break up the soil so when it is time to plant, the soil should just need raked over. Light, sandy soils should be left to the spring.
- Add compost and well-rotted manure to the vegetable beds.
- Established apple and pear trees should be pruned. Young trees and trees that are cropping well should be left alone. Gooseberry and currant bushes should also be pruned if they have not already been.
- Check cages, stakes, nets and ties and replace where necessary.
- Harvest any crops such as parsnips, brassicas and leeks.
- Warm up seedbeds by covering them with cardboard, carpet or polythene.
- Vegetable seeds that can be sown indoors include broad beans, early summer cauliflower, leeks, onions, peas, radish, salad leaves and spinach.
- Plant new sets or divide and re-plant old crowns of rhubarb. It likes the cold but not to be waterlogged.
So what am I going to do? Put the kettle on…….now where did I put that seed catalogue?