January Calendar
Gardening Jobs.

Cottage garden January calendar. Thing’s to do in the cottage garden this month.

January is normally cold and windy with the chance of frost, snow or ice. This month keep an eye on your garden plants and wildlife for signs of struggle.

Water any plants that are under shelter in containers, the winds can be very drying this time of year. Remove any snow off trees and shrubs before it turns to ice overnight, a broom should be all you need to do this.

January is also the time to begin planning for the year ahead if you have not already done so. Get inspiration online or in gardening catalogues for cottage garden plants that you love.

Take a note pad into your garden and decide if you need any new plants or move other plants to better locations. If you don’t know the type of soil you have; test it. Its better to plant with mother nature than to try to change your soil…so go with the flow.

Spare a thought for your winged friends and furry ones too. Clean all bird feeders to prevent disease and remember to feed them, they will come to expect it. I put out all kinds of food as I love watching all the birds and animals come to eat. I have attracted loads of songbirds with wild bird feed. Also put out water and if you can a bird bath.

Temperatures vary all over the country and your garden will have it’s own micro climate so take that into consideration. You may need to adjust this January calendar a little for your own cottage garden but it’s a good place to start.

Make a note of these tasks in your January calendar.

Crocus in the cottage garden

January Calendar: Flowering Cottage Plants.

  • Bring bulbs inside if the weather is bad.
  • Order summer flowering bulbs, seeds for sowing in spring and herbaceous perennials online or from a catalogue.
  • Plant lilies for summer blooms.
  • Lift and divide winter aconites and snowdrops, replant then in a new spot in your cottage garden.
  • Now is the perfect time to take hardwood cuttings of roses and increase your stock. Plant in the garden. Hardwood cuttings you can take now currants, forsythia, gooseberry, holly, honeysuckle, Philadel phus and vibur num.
  • Prune buddleia hard, take cuttings and improve your stock
  • Order and sow sweet peas. Sweet peas like a good root run and should be planted in early spring, you can start them in a greenhouse late in the month if you like.
  • Check any stored dahlia tubers for rot or disease, remove or cut of the affected area before it spreads to the entire stock.
  • Primulas are hardy enough to plant out now. They will add a splash of summer colour to your cottage garden.
  • Remove all the faded flower heads off pansy‘s to stop them from setting seeds, this way they will bloom until late spring

Herbs, Vegetables, Soft Fruit and Fruit Trees.

  • Harvest Time: Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, leeks, parsnips, spinach and turnips.
  • If the ground is not frozen complete winter digging in the vegetable patch. Add organic compost; doing this now will allow earthworms and rain time to do the job of mixing the soil for you, before you plant in spring.
  • Put old crops into the compost heap.
  • Lift and divide old clumps of rhubarb and then replant the young portions (which are the ones on the outside).
  • Force rhubarb by placing a terracotta jar over a clump of dormant rhubarb to encourage it to grow early. This will cover the crown and create warm dark conditions that will grow the rhubarb and not the leaves.
  • Order asparagus, artichokes, potatoes, onions and vegetable seeds.
  • Prune mature blackcurrant bushes, removing the oldest stems.
  • Prune fruit trees to get them into the shape you want but keep in mind that cottage gardening is about retaining the natural shape of the tree and plant so don‘t get too ‘scissor happy‘ so to speak.

January Calendar: General Cottage Gardening Jobs.

  • Keep weeding, annuals go into the compost heap, perennials can be thrown away or put into the middle (the warmest part) of the heap to rot.
  • Order seeds put them into a plastic or glass container with a tight fitting lid into the fridge.
  • If you have any mechanical gardening equipment now is the time to get it fixed or serviced before the spring season.
  • Plant bare root roses, shrubs, trees and hedging.
  • Collect the last of the leaves and either put them in the compost or in a separate pile to make leaf mould.

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