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So far this winter it has been relatively mild for the time of year, however we still have January, February and March, to get through before the warmer weather starts again. So now is the time to protect and insulate your tender plants and pots from frosts and if we have a repeat of last year, snow! Even the days are shorter, it is still a great time to get out in your garden and enjoy the fresh air. We have a compiled a short list of jobs you can be doing in preparation for spring.
Hopefully by now you have raked up all the fallen leaves from autumn. If not, get out there and burn off some of the Christmas excess (in my case too many mince pies and sausage rolls) and finish tidying those borders still full of leaves.
With weed growth on a go slow over winter, now is a great time to weed your borders and be ahead of the game. Twitch is a common problem and if not kept on top of can quickly become a huge problem in the spring and summer.
After you have cleared your border of dead vegetation and weeds, why not put some goodness back into the soil. If you have roses, then spread some decent muck at the base of the plant, we guarantee it will thank you for it! We have recently used mushroom compost on large borders. Mushroom compost contains organic material such as, hay, straw, corn cobs and hulls, and poultry or horse manure. You can buy the spent mushroom compost from most garden centres, but we can also sell and deliver for you. Mushroom compost enriches the soil and supplies nutrients for healthy plant growth, it also helps to retain water, so less watering during the summer months. Be warned, it does contain high levels of salt, so not great for seedlings or for salt-sensitive plants like rhododendrons. We recommend that you spread over your borders during the winter months and then in the spring turn over your soil to mix in. If you would like us to clear your borders and muck them, please take a look at our Muck, Mulch and a Mow Service page.
Now that winter is in full swing, make sure that your prized plants that don't like harsh frosts are remembered. There are plenty of products available today to protect these plants. Also remember that expensive clay pots or garden ornaments, might not fair well in heavy frosts, to take them inside.
Everyone has them, a tucked away area of the garden where no one goes, except to dump garden waste or broken garden furniture. Usually during the spring and summer months they are also over grown with weeds (especially stinging nettles). Winter is a great time to get into these spaces and clear them out, take the waste to your local recycling centre, cut back and dig up the weeds and turn the space into a useable storage area.
At this time of the year, food can be in short supply for our feathered friends. We have several seriously very friendly 'Robins' that follow us all day long, hoping that we will uncover a juicy earth worm. We are lucky that we have a local supplier of bird feeds in our village - have a look at their website.