5 Gardening Tips for New Year –
Plews last gardening blog of 2017 reviews what you may have been doing in your garden this year…
…and looks forward to new tasks and gardening methods you could start in 2018.
It has been shown that gardening can help to reduce stress. I sometimes wonder whether those who glibly make this pronouncement are proper gardeners. Of course gardening and being a gardener can be stressful! For example: there’s a snap frost forecast, you’re late home from work, it’s getting dark and you’re racing around trying to bring frost tender plants under cover or wrap them in horticultural fleece.
But then, there are many ways in which being a gardener makes you more able to deal with these stressful episodes. Having tips for dealing with them is one. Trying something different is another. Which is where this list and blog for 5 gardening tips for New Year comes in. Links to other Plews blogs, Plews videos and other helpful websites are included within the text and there are suggestions at the end too.
5 Gardening Tips for New Year – Compost Heaps and Composting
Do you have a compost bin or compost heap? No? There are a variety of sizes of compost bins and methods of composting. It’s a conversation I have during gardening lessons and with garden design clients. We can usually find the right composting method to suit that person and their garden.
For example: –
- cold composting in a bin or heap
- hot composting
- composting trench
Or you may already have a compost bin, but its not quite working right.
With traditional cold composting, it is sometimes necessary to turn your compost. This is because the material can become compacted within the bin and then it doesn’t rot down properly. Watch our ‘How to’ video for more info.
If you already cold compost successfully, why not add another type to your repertoire? Try a wormery , or bokashi system that would take bones and cooked food.
5 Gardening Tips for New Year – Feed the Birds
Garden birds are the gardener’s friend. They will eat aphids, slugs, snails and soil borne pests. Ok, so worms as well, but life isn’t perfect!
Encouraging birds in to your garden improves the overall health of this habitat. The dynamics of the food chain do apply to even small domestic plots. And is there a gardener who doesn’t like the companionship of a robin when they’re digging?
If, like me, you have a selection of bird feeders in various parts of the garden, now is a good time to check on them. Have any got to the point where they need to be replaced? Mouldy food encrusted at the base of a feeder is not good for the birds.
Introduce new feeders now, in plenty of time for the birds to be used to them by the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch on the weekend of 27 -29 January 2018.
5 Gardening Tips for New Year – Clean Your Garden Tools
Specifically, clean your hand tools such as secateurs and spades. It can be quite a therapeutic task, cleaning and oiling.
Escape to the garden shed if it’s not too cold or you have heating and listen to an old repeat comedy show on the battery-operated radio you were given in your Christmas stocking. Alternatively, light your chimenea or fire pit and listen to the crackling flames whilst you work.
Not sure how to go about this essential gardening task? Check out Nathan’s helpful blog. (links to Landscaping blog)
Keeping your gardening tools in good order is essential. Blunt secateurs will not cut the mustard, let alone the shrubs that need pruning.
5 Gardening Tips for New Year – Plant a Tree
Winter is the optimum time for planting bare root trees and shrubs. But you can plant container grown plants at any time of the year.
What should you plant? How long is a piece of twine?! Look for some inspiration in our various design and edible garden blogs and the Trees category.
For example: –
- If you’re short on space, plant a patio sized fruit tree in a pot – a blueberry bush or three
- More space? Go for a tree with style, such as Acer griseum, the snake bark maple, with its shiny red trunk
- Even more space? Plant a mini orchard
- Fancy an acid-loving rhododendron when you garden on alkaline soil? Choose a large pot and plant it in that
5 Gardening Tips for New Year – Lawns and Alternatives
Obviously not everyone can or would want to do away with their turf lawn altogether. But if you’re not a lover of mowing your lawn, strimming the edges, scarifying and raking you may like to consider reducing the area your lawn covers.
Reduce your grass lawn area and reduce: –
- the amount of your time spent mowing using a petrol or electric mower
- weeding and feeding with non-organic chemicals
By doing this you could reduce the negative impact on wildlife and your gardening budget. And you may be able to trade in your petrol or electric mower for a push mower and improve your fitness levels. So you could save a gym membership fee too!
What alternatives to grass lawns are there?
- Herb lawns
- Wild flower meadows
- Herbaceous borders
- Edible gardens –
- Vegetable plot
All of these can be mixed in with a grass lawn to create family friendly, wildlife friendly, dog friendly and wheelchair friendly gardens. It’s all in the design.
5 Gardening Tips for New Year – effort?
Even if you don’t actually get around to doing all of these tasks, it’s better to do one than not doing any at all. And at Plews we have a selection of gardening services and products to help you.
So can we help you with some of your hopes, dreams and plans for your 2018 garden? With garden consultancy, garden design, planting designs and gardening lessons to offer you and eBooks to download, there’s sure to be something! Why not have a look around the website then get in touch.
Related Gardening articles you may enjoy from our Award Winning Blog
Your Greenhouse Plants Winter Checklist
Garden Planning – Your New Year’s Resolution for Your Garden
Six New Year’s Resolutions for Your Garden
The Gardening Year – Quotes and Thoughts from the Garden
Why you shouldn’t use a Garden Designer
So What Might a Plews Gardening Lesson Be Like?
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