The shortest day has now passed and the days are getting longer. There are some lovely days in January to get out into the garden.
Tips for January
1. Recycle the Christmas Tree
Recycle the Christmas Tree. If you can shred it or collect some needles, they are great as a mulch for the Blueberries or Camellias..
Don’t try to keep your Poinsettia plant until next year, once its past its best, compost it, but take care because the sap is poisonous.
If you would like to keep houseplants Louise Bustard recommended these at the December meeting. Caladiums, Calatheas, Sansevieria, Maranta are all good house plants and Rebutia (a type of Cactus) are perfect for children.
Start forcing Rhubarb with an old dustbin or a large bucket. You will be rewarded with pink stems at the beginning of March.
5. Feed the birds
In very cold weather feed the birds extra fatty foods. I put out mealworms as well, but I put a cage around any food on the ground to prevent the Herring and Black Back Gulls taking it. Also keep the bird bath defrosted and refreshed
6. Planning your garden
Having ordered the seed catalogues start planning your cut flower border and your vegetable rotation.
7. Early signs of Spring
Best of all get out into the garden and look for signs of Spring, shoots of bulbs coming through,(particularly Snowdrops). Early flowering shrubs may have buds swelling and you may find Witch Hazel (Hamamelis) in flower.