Now’s the Time: January

Whether it’s cold and snowy or chilly and rainy, wherever you are, the garden (and its inhabitants!) needs just a bit of attention in January. Bundle up, grab a tool or two, and head outside. Here are a few things to consider this month.

ZONE 3 - 5

 

Repurpose That Christmas Tree: Recycle your Christmas tree into a snacking station for birds with homemade garlands of peanuts, popcorn, cranberries, and fruits strung through the boughs. Or, cut branches from the tree and place over perennials in your garden. This can help plants survive a freeze and thaw spell. (This is Baby Blue Eyes Spruce.)

ZONE 6 - 8

Bloomin’ Easy: Spring blooming azaleas are now forming buds at the very tips of their branches. While most established azaleas don’t require fertilizer if kept well mulched, consider applying a high phosphorus fertilizer (look for a higher number in the N-P-K formula on the bag) now to well watered shrubs to encourage a big spring bloom. (This is Irene Koster Azalea.)

ZONE 9 - 11

Kindest Cuts: Now, in January, in warmer zones (8 and up), it’s time to start to prune roses. Anytime during the month will work, but the middle to latter part of the month or early February is the preferred time (I usually do mine on Superbowl Sunday!). Grab very clean, very sharp pruners and begin by cutting away any dead branches or those that are thinner than a pencil. Next, thin out the center to encourage air circulation, and finally cut back remaining stems by about 1/3 of the length to an outfacing bud. Feed and mulch! Questions? Ask below! (This is Grace N’ Grit™ Pink BiColor Shrub Rose)

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