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GARDENING INFO FROM DOUG – January Gardening Thoughts and Chores

By Doug Hensel
Doug's Blog

JANUARY IS A GOOD MONTH TO SPEND TIME REFLECTING AND PLANNING YOUR GARDENING STRATEGY FOR THE UPCOMING SPRING SEASON

First, Happy New Year to all you gardeners.

Secondly, this time of year more than most I wish I had a crystal ball to see what winter has in store for us. Will we be colder than normal? Will we have snow? Will we stay unseasonably warm for the winter? Just not sure. But, one thing that I do know is…WE ARE DRY! We had an unusually dry fall season. October was dry, November was dry, and December was dry—not a good scenario for all the plants planted this fall.

I hate being inactive. But, here are a few suggestions as to what we gardeners can be doing to help pass our time in January.

  • DON’T FORGET TO WATER—especially your winter container gardens. Container gardens will dry out quicker than plants in the ground. Evergreens should not be allowed to dry out during any cold weather. I will water my winter container gardens a couple of times a week.
  • Take advantage of sunny, mild days and walk around your gardens. In other words, get out of the house and get some fresh air! Keep in mind that this stroll can be considered an exercise for both the body and the mind.
  • Typically, here in Central Virginia, we do not experience frozen ground that keeps us from planting—even in January. I like using my soil thermometer. Right now our soil temperature is sitting at 40 degrees (as of December 30). One plant to consider planting for some winter color is the evergreen perennial, Hellebore.
  • Don’t forget that bird feeding/watching is the #2 outdoor hobby behind gardening. So, try hanging a bird feeder for our feather friends. It is so much fun watching all the birds this time of year. Speaking of birds:
    • MARK YOU CALENDAR—THE RICHMOND AUDUBON SOCIETY, along with the MASTER NATURALIST will be here for our KIDS DAY in the GARDEN event on Saturday, January 15th, from 10 AM to 2 PM, offering a fun, learning activity about birds and nature.
  • Spring 2022 flower and garden seeds are here – along with all seed starting supplies. January is a good month to shop for your wanted seeds and supplies.
  • If you miss being outdoors around plants, consider adding some tropical plants to your indoor living areas.
  • Grow some indoor herbs such as basil, catnip, cilantro, thyme, oregano – in order to be successful you will need a full, sunny window. Or, you can supplement lighting with a grow light. You can grow your own fresh herbs all winter long.
  • January is a good month to clean clay pots. Soak them in vinegar to help remove salt deposits.

                                     HAPPY JANUARY GARDENING !!!!!!!!!!!!

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