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Tips for the month

Every month we offer tips and advice on how to keep your garden looking great.

January 2018

Most of us would rather be snuggled up by the fire than out in the garden in January, but little jobs done on the milder days can make a big difference as the weather warms up.

  • Add a layer of mulch to beds that contain bulbs and tender young growth to help protect against frost damage, home-made compost can be ideal, or use chipped bark for a more decorative style.
  • Brush or shake heavy snow from bushes and conifers before the weight of it starts to bend the branches over.
  • On warmer days, dig over empty beds and borders. Using a fork to turn it over will expose insect pests to the hungry birds, who will appreciate a tasty treat, and the frosty mornings will help to break up any heavy clods. 

Growing your own?

  • Check over the plot and remove any old or decaying crops. Most waste can be composted, but diseased plants should be burned. If you have the energy, double digging your plot is an excellent way to revitalise tired soil.
  • January is the time to start choosing your seed potatoes. At Russells we stock over 40 varieties of high quality certified potatoes, but they do sell out fast. Even if you dont have an allotment or vegetable plot., potatoes can be grown very simply on the patio in a suitable container. Our Potato Planters even have side access pockets so that some of the crop can be picked without disturbing the plant, meaning fresh tasty potatoes are always at hand.
  • Force outdoor rhubarb crowns. Carefully lift the crowns and bring them into a cool greenhouse. Exclude all light with rhubarb forcers or black polythene, and the first tasty stems should be ready in about 6 weeks.
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