11 must do things in the Garden this January

I know no one can be bothered to think about the garden in January – especially right now. It’s pelting down misery outside 😀 So, let me keep this short and sweet. These are the eleven things I am doing as a professional in my garden January. You should be thinking about some of these too.

As an experienced gardener, I would suggest that January in the UK is a time for planning and preparation in the garden. Here are some top tips to ensure your garden is set for the coming year:

    1. Plan Your Garden: Take the time to sketch out a plan for your garden. This might include new plants you want to introduce, structural changes, or areas that need renovation. Now is also the ideal time to order seeds and bulbs for spring planting. Perhaps you can take some inspiration from this garden recently landscaped:
    2. Have a bonfire if you missed November: Amazingly because it’s damp as a professional landscaper this is my favourite time of the year to have a bonfire. Mainly because the fire and hazard risk due to dampness is considerably reduced. Here’s my latest clear up 🙂

      Have a bonfire in January is a great idea – my latest work 🙂
    3. Clean and Sharpen Tools: On dry days, clean, sharpen, and oil your gardening tools. Proper maintenance now will make your work easier when spring arrives. I am always keen to get the chainsaw sharpener out.

      Sharpen your tools in January – Credit Unsplash CDX
    4. Protect Plants from Frost: Keep an eye on the weather forecasts and be ready to protect tender plants from frost with horticultural fleece or straw. If snow falls, gently shake it off shrubs and trees to prevent branch damage.
    5. Prune Fruit Trees: January is the perfect month to prune apple and pear trees while they are still dormant. Avoid pruning if there’s a frost, as this can harm the trees.
    6. Chit Potatoes: Start ‘chitting’ early potatoes – set them in a cool, light place to encourage shoots to form before planting them out.

7. Feed the Birds: Keep bird feeders topped up to support wildlife. Birds are essential for pest control and pollination in your garden. I’m always looking at how to makebird feeders. Failing that, buying a bird table works too or make one!

Bird table – lovely idea for January

8. Plan Vegetable Crop Rotations: If you have a vegetable patch, plan your crop rotations to prevent soil depletion and reduce the risk of disease.

9. Check Stored Bulbs and Tubers: Make sure that any bulbs or tubers you have stored over winter are not rotting or drying out.

10. Force Rhubarb: For an early crop, place a forcing jar or an upturned bucket over your rhubarb crowns.

11. Winter Digging: If the ground is not frozen, dig over vacant plots and incorporate as much organic matter as you can. This will improve soil structure and fertility.

Remember that January is generally a quiet month in the garden, but it’s a great time for reflection on the past season and preparation for the next. It’s about setting the foundation for a successful, beautiful, and productive year ahead in your garden.

About Terry Smith

I’m Terry Smith from gardentoolbox.co.uk, a professional landscape designer, hobbyist gardener, and barbecue fanatic with 20 years experience building and restoring. So as you go through my site you'll watch me document some of the professional garden installs I make as well as the major projects I take on at home. While sharing those experiences and guiding you, I'll be recommending some great tools I use to enable this along the way so you can really buy in confidence. Always feel free to pop me a message: info@gardentoolbox.co.uk

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