Whatever the weather or time of year there is always something to be done in the garden.
Each month we ask our managers to give us their advice on what we should be looking at at this time of year.
The Kitchen Garden
Continue with winter digging if the soil is dry enough and not frozen, incorporate well rotted organic matter where possible such as care compost or farmyard manure. Consider covering the ground with polythene to keep it dry.
The Water Garden
If you have a fish pond remember to try to keep a section ice free by installing a small pond heater which will keep a small surface area from freezing over. If the pond does freeze over during the night let the ice naturally thaw out as breaking the ice can cause stress to the fish and wildlife. It is best to try to minimize the amount of accumulated sludge, decaying plant debris, etc. from the water. This can be done with a net, by siphon, or by use of a Pond Vacuum.
Any plants in the wrong position can now be moved providing the soil is not waterlogged or frozen. Ensure you take as big a root ball as possible, and remember to feed the soil with bonemeal or fish blood & bone. Stake any tall plants to prevent wind rock. Protect tender plants with horticultural fleece and straw.
Rake up fallen leaves to prevent turf yellowing – beware of sleeping hedgehogs and do not disturb them. If the ground conditions are good prepare the ground and lay turf or patch damaged areas. Keep off frosted or wet lawns to prevent damaging them.
Remove yellow and fallen leaves and finished flowers. The moist atmosphere and short days are ideal conditions for mould any vegetable matter left will encourage this. Ensure heaters and maintained and fuelled whenever they are used, and fit outside taps with a tap protector to prevent freezing.