Tom's Gardening Corner
What to do and when
This is the time to plan your garden. Order seeds and plants for the Spring. For your early potatoes put seed potatoes to sprout in a box in a frost free shed. Put planted seeds such as French beans, broad beans, cabbage and lettuce in a heated green house (if you have one) if not have you somewhere to store these in the house where it won’t cause an argument!! You won’t need to plant outside until late March.
Prepare your soil for sowing by raking to a fine till. In your heated greenhouse (or in doors on a sunny window sill) sow seeds for vegetables such as tomatoes, onions, and cauliflowers. Also you need to put compost around established perennial plants that have been outside during the Winter.
Prune your roses. Top dress soil with fertiliser. Plant your early seedling perennials ie lupins, hollyhocks. Sow seeds for turnips and carrots outside in your vegetable plot.
Sow seeds for hardy annuals in outside flower beds. Rake the lawn to get rid of dead grass and leaves etc and weather permitting do first cut. (Set your blades high). Plant pinks and carnations outside. Also plant your potatoes outside. Plant some half hardy annuals in the greenhouse. Make up hanging baskets but keep them in heated greenhouse or inside away from the frost.
Plant outside your half hardy annuals at end of May when all danger of frost is past. Thin out hardy annuals that you planted earlier. If growing runner beans sow them outside.
You can put out your hanging baskets now and any pots that you have planted up. Thin out vegetables such as carrots, parsnips etc. Now you will need to keep mowing the lawn. You can constantly sow lettuce for a succession of salads.
If you have sweet peas cut flower heads and remember to dead head other flowers to ensure continuous flowering. Plant Autumn bulbs.
Protect fruit from insects and birds with netting. Keep lawn tidy, keep weeds down in the beds by hoeing. Take cuttings of plants you want for next year to keep over the Winter ie fuscias, geraniums etc.
Take out flowers such as dahlias, gladioli, begonias etc that won’t stand the frost. Keep bulbs and tubers in frost free conditions for replanting next year. Plant Spring flowering bulbs and corms such as hyacinth and daffodils in pots. Tidy the flower beds.
Time to plant shrubs and roses. Reseed or turf patches of lawn where it is needed.
Roughly dig vegetable plots adding manure to the soil, the frost will break it down. Clear the beds of annual plants and dig in compost.
Spray fruit trees to protect against pests. Sit down have a cuppa, and read your seed catalogues to plan for next year.
Have a happy 12 months gardening!
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