In this issue:
- January in the Garden
- January To-Do List
- Gardenerd Tip of the Month: Water Leaks mean $$ Leaks
- Gardenerd Product of the Month: New Gardenerd Sweatshirt
1. January in the Garden
It’s strange out there: record low temperatures in the Midwest, record highs in the West. Our garden climate is not what it used to be. This odd weather welcomes us to the New Year, and it’s a fresh start to make new plans for our spring gardens. What are your Gardening New Year’s Resolutions? To grow more drought tolerant or native plants? To replace lawns with edibles? To start composting? These are all perfect starting points for a more sustainable New Year.
January may seem like an inactive time for gardening, but for many it’s the time to ramp up. Check out our helpful To-Do list below for inspiration. Our winter garden is providing salad greens galore, and we’ve started eating peas right from the vine. There’s still chard and kale to pick, as well as carrots and radishes. Our orange tree is drooping with fruit. Such a sweet treat, we don’t even need chocolate this season.
As the New Year moves forward, we’ve scheduled our first classes of the year to help you get started. See below for our first Spring Garden Planning Workshops coming soon in February and March. More to come…
2. January To-Do List
Whether your garden is thriving or covered with snow, January is no time to rest. Here are some tasks to keep you busy this month:
Prune Roses – this is the time of year to cut back roses. Pruning encourages vigorous growth and flowering in spring. Don’t be afraid, roses can handle it. Here’s a helpful guide: Rose Pruning Tips (scroll to the bottom of the link for details)
Winter Pruning – Now is the time to prune your fruit trees. Do you know your 3 D’s? It’s the strategy for a healthy tree. Prune away Dead, Diseased, and Disorderly branches (crossing or rubbing) and the tree will reward you with a bounty in spring and summer. Avoid pruning stone fruit trees if rain is in the forecast. Here’s a thorough guide.
Garden Planning – It’s not too early to plot out your garden on paper. Once you have a blueprint for your spring garden, you’ll know how much seed to start when the time comes. Need help planning? Check out our upcoming classes.
Seed Review – pull your seed collection out from storage and check each package to make sure you have enough for the coming season. Put those dog-eared catalogs to work and order new seeds (or check them out from your local seed library). Be sure to include heirlooms and open pollinated seeds that you can save from year to year. Want some of our favorites for 2014? Check out our recent podcast on the subject.
3. Gardenerd Tip of the Month – Water Leaks mean $$ Leaks
Nothing puts things in perspective like a well-done visual aid. The one above is from the Summer 2013 edition of On Earth Magazine and illustrates just how much money you can waste with even a small water leak. A hole in size of a nail head can mean over 1,500 gallons per day and nearly $3,000 per year. Crazy! Most water utilities offer leak-detection programs, so take time this season to find water leaks (if your pipes aren’t frozen) and fix them before gardening starts.
4. Gardenerd Product of the Month – NEW! Gardenerd Women’s Dark Hoodie Sweatshirt
New Year, new product in the CafePress store: Introducing the new Gardenerd Women’s Dark colored Hoodie Sweatshirt. Available in black, navy or heather gray, these dirt-masking colors keep you looking cool, but staying warm in the garden this winter.
Stay tuned for more tips and tidbits from Gardenerd.com. Happy winter gardening!