9 January Garden Maintenance Tasks
2017 has now come and gone, and the mince pies and leftover turkey may now just be a distant memory as another year begins in earnest.
Often the coldest month of the year and a time when the days are still very short, for many, January can be quite a bleak month.
But it needn’t be.
January is a great time to take stock of your life and start planning for the year ahead.
Its also the perfect time to take a closer look at your garden and start your preparations for the gardening year.
Maybe it’s time for a complete garden overhaul or perhaps it just needs tidying up a little.
As the days start getting longer your garden will begin to grow again, and it won’t be long before those daffodils start appearing for their annual display of beauty.
So don’t despair, forget about those January blues, and make a 2018 a fantastic year for your garden.
In today’s article were going to be looking at 9 garden maintenance tasks for the month of January.
You’ll learn some clever recycling tricks, how to reduce maintenance in your garden, and how to prepare your garden ready for the spring.
1. Recycle Your Christmas Tree
Your Christmas tree may have been kicking around in the garden for a couple of weeks now, but it’s time to finally do something with it.
Christmas trees can provide fantastic mulch for your garden so don’t just throw them away. Recycle them.
Simply put it through your shredder and spread on plant beds.
The mulch will help boost the fertility and structure of your soil, suppress weeds and conserve moisture – creating perfect growing conditions for your plants and shrubs.
2. Prepare Pots Ready for the Spring
January is a great time to get things ready for the growing season, as when it does come around you’ll want to be able to maximise the time you have tending to your plants, rather than cleaning.
It’s important to keep your pots clean and remove salt deposits, which can form on the bottom of pots if water is allowed to sit. Salt deposits can affect any new plants you put in them as it can damage the water quality.
Cleaning is also important to prevent spreading disease. Whilst one plant may survive happily with a certain type of disease, it could be disastrous for another, so it’s vital to make sure new plants are planted in nice clean pots.
To clean plant pots, scrub off the salt deposits and excess soil with a stiff hand brush and clean, warm water. Don’t use soap, though, as it may cause harm to your new plants.
To remove any bacteria, spray plastic pots with bleach. Terracotta pots are best soaked in bleach for about 20 minutes and then allowed to dry naturally.
3. Get Your Lawnmower Serviced
For those of you who still have real lawns, why not get your lawnmower serviced ready for the new season?
Your mower has likely spent the last few months kicking around at the back of the garden shed and the last thing you want is to discover you have a broken machine when you drag it out to attempt your first cut of the year.
Lawnmower servicing can be expensive, but prevention is better than cure and having a properly maintained mower will increase its lifespan. Handy, as we all know how much new lawnmowers cost!
4. Clean Your Greenhouse
This may not be the most glamorous task to undertake this January, but it’s an important one, nonetheless.
Whether your greenhouse is made from plastic or glass, maybe it’s time you gave it some attention?
Cleaning your greenhouse will help improve the growing environment for your plants.
By cleaning the windows of your greenhouse you’ll be removing algae, moss and general dirt, which will let in more light whilst helping to control pests and diseases.
Sweep or vacuum up any waste inside your greenhouse, and it may even be worth disinfecting the inside to kill any bacteria present.
Cleaning out the gutters is a good idea, as well as checking over your greenhouse for anything that may be broken or in need of repair.
5. Dig Over Borders in Preparation for Spring
January is a great time of the year to give those borders some much-needed attention.
Take your time with this and make sure you have a good quality spade and/or fork as it can be hard work digging over your borders.
The earlier in January you can do this task, the better.
Whilst digging over your beds, why not use the opportunity to add in some fertiliser or lime to improve the quality of your soil?
Soil cultivation will improve the structure of your soil and help to bury any weeds and debris, all ready for spring.
6. Plan for the Year Ahead
If you’re thinking about a complete garden overhaul, use January to formulate a plan.
Browse magazines, catalogues and the Internet for garden ideas and inspiration.
If you’ll be requiring outside help from a local landscaper then why not start making enquiries and gathering quotations now, before the best landscapers become booked up for the year?
By carefully planning and organising your upcoming work schedule you’ll ensure that everything runs smoothly, and you’ll not have to rush any key decisions.
7. Remove Worm Casts From Your Lawn
Worm casts can be the bane of your life if your lawn suffers from this frustrating pest.
Worm casts are caused by earthworms and typically appear on the surface of your lawn as small mounds of soil.
The activity of earthworms is welcome for plant beds, but in the case of garden lawns, it can really ruin their appearance.
Worm casts can be broken up using a garden rake, but this can only be done when the soil is dry and unfortunately, in January, there are very few days when your lawn will be dry enough to carry out this task.
One of the issues with real grass is that it’s generally unusable during the winter months. Walking on saturated grass will damage it.
There is a range of chemical products available to help you deal with worm casts. They normally contain sulphur, which helps to alter the pH level of your lawn to a more acidic level, which earthworms generally don’t like.
As always when using any form of chemical, carefully read the label before applying it and remember you may need to keep pets and children away from the treated areas.
8. Carry Out Hard Landscaping Tasks
If you are considering building a new patio, demolishing an old shed or building a rockery, January is often a great time to do it.
This is because there is less risk of damaging plants and shrubs than when they are in full bloom.
It’s a great time to help visualise how hard landscaping can be used to transform your garden.
It’s also a good time for these kind of works to be undertaken, as January is not a time when you’ll be wanting to spend some quiet time relaxing in your garden with a glass of wine – unless you like the cold, that is!
This will mean you’ll have more time to spend in your new garden when the warmer weather does eventually start.
9. Get Artificial Grass Installed
If all this maintenance sounds too much like hard work, then why not consider having artificial grass installed in your garden?
Fake grass is very low-maintenance and can transform even the dullest garden into a lush green, prize-winning lawn.
There will be no more of the mud and mess that you usually associate with your lawn throughout the month of January.
Your garden lawn will be a much more usable space, even during the winter, as any rainfall will drain directly through synthetic grass without creating the usual mudbath.
Its also great for your pets as you’ll no longer need to be continuously wiping their paws throughout January and the winter months, and you can say goodbye to mud being traipsed through the house.
It’s extremely hard-wearing, and urine and solids from your dog won’t harm fake grass in any way at all.
Your kids will love it, too, as they can play on synthetic turf all year round and those young budding footballers will feel like they’re playing at Wembley.
The list of benefits is huge and if you would like to reduce the maintenance your garden needs throughout the entire year, why not consider faking it?
January is a great time to get out in the garden and prepare for the year ahead.
The frosty weather shouldn’t put you off going outside and getting your hands dirty.
You’ll also find that there’s still plenty going on in your garden as it prepares for spring, and January needn’t be the drab month that you think it is.
If this has inspired you to consider having artificial grass installed in your garden, then you’ve come to the right place.
Why not request your FREE samples or contact your nearest NeoGrass approved installer, who’ll be able to talk you through the process of having fake turf installed and give you an idea of how much it may cost?
If you have any questions on maintaining your garden throughout January or any more ideas that we haven’t included, then let us know by leaving a comment below.
As always, thanks for reading.
Don’t forget to check out our garden maintenance guides for the other months of the year: