In the Garden

 

There's always something to do in the garden - especially if you have ambitions to show your produce at the next Village Show. Here Show Chairman Roy Halsey offers some advice on what jobs you can be getting on with - weather permitting of course!

Click to see gardening tips for the month: Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

December

General:

  • It's amazing how much garden waste is generated when clearing the flower and vegetable areas. All the weeds can go into the 'Green' wheelie bin and the old plant waste into your own compost bin. My compost bins are now full so I dig shallow trenches where the runner beans and sweet peas will go next year and put the garden waste, especially the lawn clippings, into them. I then cover with a layer of soil, mark them with canes and next April the plants will be able to grow with their feet in some moisture-retaining, well rotted compost
  • Remove, wash and store water features and pond pumps
  • Get your lawn mower serviced
  • Wash seed trays and pots using a disinfectant (weak Jeyes Fluid) solution

In the flower garden:

  • Shorten stems on roses to about waist height to reduce wind rock and collect all the leaves from around the base of the bushes
  • Cut spent perennial stems down to ground level
  • Take cuttings, when the weather allows, of buddleia, forsythia and hydrangea by taking out a shallow narrow trench with a spade, add a layer of grit, place the cuttings (about 12 to 15 inches in length) into the trench so about 4 to 6 inches are showing and push the soil back. Water well

In the fruit and vegetable garden:

  • Now is the time to prune apple and pear trees but leave all stone fruit (ie cherries and plums) until summer
  • Cut back all autumn raspberry stems to approximately soil level
  • Check stored fruit for rot

When the weather is wet and cold, stoke up the fire and make a list from gardening catalogues of the plants and seeds needed for next year.

A Merry Christmas to you all!