As we head into December there’s still lots going on in the garden – even if it’s not as colourful or as abundant as spring and summer. That means there’s still lots to do and gets us outdoors to absorb a bit more of our essential vitamin D.
So, this is what we’re planning to do this month.
Checking for winter damage. Unfortunately, when we have bad weather we do need to keep an eye on any damage in the garden. Look at ways to take preventative measures to ensure minimal damage to trees, plants and fences – adding supports and repairing any weak points.
Insulate and monitor water sources such as outdoor taps and ponds to prevent freezing. Especially if you have fish in your garden ponds.
Reduce watering of houseplants during December. This prevents the soil getting waterlogged during colder temperatures.
Keep your seeds safe. Store any produce or seeds securely in sealed containers to keep them safe from any hungry rodents.
Get planting your shallots and garlic into the sheltered, milder, well-draining spots in your garden.
Harvest any remaining root veg such as sprouts, leeks and parsnips
Get pruning any apple and pear trees and autumn raspberry plants.
Keep clearing vegetable patches and flower beds of debris and add to the compost bin - providing they are disease free.
Clean bird feeders and stock up on some bird food to give your local wildlife a helping hand over the colder months.
Prune your wisteria for the best blooms the following spring.
Add rotted manure to empty plots so that this can rot further into the soil over winter.
Avoid walking on the lawn during frost or snow to protect the grass, and clear dead leaves away if they are preventing light from reaching the grass.
Spike your lawn with a garden fork for improved drainage and aeration and to help protect against any potential downpours and waterlogging.
Finally we’re going to be making sure we’re warm and cosy by the fire and taking the opportunity to reflect on our gardening successes and mistakes from the past year. We all make them! We’ll be browsing the seed catalogues to order next year’s flower and vegetable seeds and dreaming of the first sprouts of spring.