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January Jobs To Do In The Garden
Garden

January Jobs To Do In The Garden

If you think January is the worst time to work on your garden, you are missing out on a lot of chances to cultivate your outdoor space and kick start the growing season.

So, it’s time to ditch that notion and put your new-year enthusiasm to good use by fulfilling crucial tasks in the garden this month. Our experts have compiled some of the top gardening jobs you need to do in January so you won’t have to look any further!

1. Dig remaining vacant plots that have not yet been dug

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If you are planning on cultivating more space for planting in your garden, make sure to dig all vacant plots this month to prepare it for spring. You can also cultivate the soil around your plants while avoiding to damage the roots.

By doing so, you are improving the quality of your soil — alleviating compaction and making it easy to add fertiliser, manure and compost. Remember, however, to apply minimum cultivation as over-doing it can damage natural soil structure.

2. Prune apple and pear trees

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To stimulate new growth among your apple and pear trees, take out a bit of old wood this winter. Your aim is to take off between 10-20% of the overall canopy each year.

Workaround your tree evenly and make sure to keep an eye on your pruning pile. If it is looking quite big, it’s time for you to stop. You can always go back and prune some more in the next winter.

3. Clean pots and greenhouses ready for spring

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Cleaning is not the most glamorous of all gardening tasks, but you can put your new-year enthusiasm to good use by doing it now. Start with your pots, gardening tools, water butts and greenhouse to prepare them for spring.

You can also start organising your garden shed, putting away all unnecessary clutter. Purchase a few tools you think you might need for this year’s gardening jobs as well.

4. Recycle your Christmas tree

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If you are about to put away your tree, stop right there because it can serve as nourishment for your garden soil. You can recycle it by turning it into compost or shredding it into mulch. You can also remove the branches of your Christmas tree, laying it over the soil of tender plants to keep their roots warm.

5. Kick-off your potatoes

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Homegrown potatoes taste far better than any spuds available in stores. So, take advantage of their rich flavour by planting your own crops this year — if you haven’t yet in the past.

To begin, snap up some miniature tubers for planting in pots or the ground. First, encourage them to form shoots via a technique called chitting. Use an egg carton and place individual tubers in its empty cups, making sure the rose is facing upwards.

Then, store the carton in a cool, light, dry place for about six weeks. Wait until the tubers have produced lots of 2.5cm long, stubby green shoots. Make sure not to put them in a warm, dark area as a lot of spindly white shoots can snap off easily.

6. Tidy up your perennials

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January is the best month of the year to prune your perennials. Sp, cut down some old, soggy and collapsed stems, and put them in your compost. Be careful of any new growth, though.

7. Grow winter crops

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Despite the cold weather, you can still enjoy your garden and grow your own — taking advantage of your windowsill and using the heat from your home to kick off your veggies.

You can try the good old mustard and cress, but you can also opt for fast-cropping microgreens which will give you great nutritional return. They can be an excellent way to start the growing season while being of huge benefit to your health.

Aside from those, basils, radishes or even broccoli, sunflowers, beetroots and pea shoots are an easy process. Rhubarb is another winter-growing favourite, which you can plant now given that it’s dry and no frosts will occur.

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