It may feel like there is not much to do in the garden over January, but this is a crucial time to start thinking about (if you haven’t already) how to prepare your beds for transplanting, planting and sowing as the Spring will be upon us before you know it!
As well as checking any fleece and/or straw covering you may have put down to ensure fragile plants are sufficiently lagged against the chill, this is also a perfect time to mulch borders with manure or compost. At Earth Cycle we have a range of composts and mulches including Compost Mulch, Woodland Mulch, Cow Compost, Mushroom Compost, Vegetable Compost, and Beds & Borders Compost. You can also use our Ornamental Bark for mulching as it also helps to deter bugs and slugs (if they are still present during this time). We recommend placing a layer between 5-10cm thick as a good mulch.
If you have already made a plan of what and where you are planting when Spring comes, then you may also want to think about the quality of the soil. You should already have dug over the ground, removing weeds and shoots and so have a good idea where it is worth digging in extra compost for nutrition (our Cow Compost or Compost Soil Conditioner are both ideal for this).
Cover the ground with plastic sheeting if you can to keep weeds down if it is mild. Also remember that January can be wet, and by covering the ground you can prevent water logging as well as prevent the soil from freezing. This will mean a potentially earlier planting too which is always good!
Towards the end of this month, if the ground is not frozen, it can be the perfect opportunity to plant bare-root roses outdoors. In the greenhouse, radishes and broad beans can be sown in January as long as the weather is mild, and lettuces, summer brassicas, spinach, and turnip seeds can be sown indoors to achieve early crops.
So, to recap…
• Mulch borders with Compost Mulch or Bark
• Check that more fragile plants are well covered with fleece and/or straw
• Dig in Cow Compost or Compost Soil Conditioner to add extra nutrients to your soil
• Cover ground with plastic sheeting to keep weeds at bay and to maintain the ground temperature
• Sow radishes and broad beans in the greenhouse
• Sow seeds such as lettuces, summer brassicas, spinach and turnips indoors
To find out more about the Earth Cycle range of barks and mulches click here