JANUARY brings a sparkle to the garden. Early morning frosts
can create a beautiful effect in the garden and surrounding
countryside giving a Christmas card atmosphere.
uncomfortable it may seem but this winter wonderland scene
should not be missed.
What better time than this to cut down
old or unwanted trees and saw them up for firewood to toast your
toes at on a cold winter's night.
In days gone by it was a
tradition in many of our stately homes to go round the garden
and record what was in flower. Many of the plants included were
Mahonias, Winter Jasmine, Virburnums and not forgetting many
vibrantly coloured foliage plants that change with every season.
The garden has suffered a lot these last few weeks with heavy
rain, wind and freezing temperatures. But still many of our old
faithful garden plants such as Crocuses, Snow-drops and
Hellebores are already peeping through the ground.
that have been damaged by adverse weather should be left alone.
It would be advisable at this point to leave any cutting back
for a while as the risk of further frost could kill the plant
completely. Mice can be a real pest at this time of year,
burrowing under cloches to steal autumn sown seed and nibbling
on fruit and vegetables in store. Watch out for them among small
bulbs such as Narcissi, Tulips, Hyacinths and especially Crocus
as mice find these very tasty. At the first sign of damage set
the mouse traps, and this should solve the problem.
Botrytis can be a horrible threat in the glasshouse. Check
over all your plants frequently, removing all dead or dying
foliage, flowers and stems that have mould or rot present.
Space out plants well to allow a good air flow around them and
keep the glasshouse as clean as possible.
When there is a
glimpse of sunshine open the glasshouse vents for an hour or so
to let some fresh air in.