I know it's cold outside but gardening is a great way to get some fresh air and exercise...there's always something to do and you'll feel great afterwards. Just 15 minutes outsides...you will be glad you did!
- Spray dormant, deciduous fruit trees, berries and roses with dormant oil spray...this protects plants from insects and their eggs by smothering them. Be sure to clean up any leaves and fruit on plants and ground. With roses I like to prune and remove any leaves first. Be generous with spray- cover all parts of plant.
- Frost watch If frost is predicted make sure frost-sensitive plants like citrus and Bougainvillea have enough moisture in soil. If plants are not in a protected spot and have suffered frost damage before think about covering with a frost blanket, old sheet, burlap or paper. It’s best if the material doesn’t touch leaves by propping it up with stakes. Remove cover during the day. Or try a string of electric lights - it will look festive and keep the plant warm.
- Spruce up your porch with potted plants like poinsettia, miniature pines, or go the other direction with frost-tolerant succulent plants! Bigger pots and bigger plants make a bold statement. Use moss, bare branches, pine cones and/or big pebbles to add interest.
- Rake up leaves from surfaces (soil, hardscape and lawn) and remove leaves from the top and inside of plants.
- Weed Pull up weeds before they flower and set seed. Avoid damaging just emerging spring bulbs and careful about stepping on soil that is too wet (soggy.)
- Mulch Add 1-2” layer of mulch to suppress growth of more weeds. I usually do this once all the autumn leaves have fallen and been cleaned up.
- Purchase bare-root plants like fruit trees, strawberries and roses from nurseries (towards end of month) and mail-order companies (now for best selection.) Get them into ground asap.
Read more of Angele's gardening and landscaping tips in the Patch Archives.