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Gardening in January | News, Sports, Jobs

If you are a gardener, you might think January is just for daydreaming about what’s to come in a few months. Well me too.

But, there is also a ton of work to be done.

I usually dream for the first seven to 10 days of beautiful flowers, well-mulched flower beds, and the scents of my best garden plans. Then it hits me – I have to do a bit of homework to make sure my dreams come true.

By doing a few things each week, you’ll be ready for spring and sooner than you expect. You will outperform all the other gardeners in your neighborhood.

But to be fair, you should talk to your friends and help each other out. Maybe it’s make an order together to save money on seeds or plants. Perhaps he seeks and finds a young local to help with the gardening work. Whatever you do, dream big and take action on these garden ideas for 2022!

To help you get started, I’ve put together a list of the things to do in my garden to be ready when spring arrives.

WRITE AND PLAN

• Start your garden journal now. You may want to include garden plans or a wish list. Better yet, blog!

• Sketch your vegetable garden, remember to alternate crops in different areas.

• Check the registered seeds. Test for germination. Share seeds with your neighbors and swap the seeds you need.

• Order seeds for new varieties. Place an order with two or more friends to save money and get more seeds.

• Research a new plant that you wanted to try.

• Plan a new flower or herb bed.

WINTER CARE

• Feed and water the birds.

• Avoid walking on “crunchy” grass.

• Check and cut any geraniums you overwinter.

• Check bulbs, tubers and bulbs in storage. Mix up those that are moldy or withered.

• Check the perennials in the garden. If some have lifted, gently push them down. Add mulch if you have it.

CLEAN AND PREPARE

• Clean gardening tools and pots. Sharpen garden tools. Adjust garden power tools.

• Paint the handles of garden tools in a bright color.

• Clean salted terracotta pots. Soak in vinegar to remove salt, rinse and let dry. Then soak in a one to nine dilution of bleach with water.

FUN

• Make a ball of homemade tallow or coat a pine cone in peanut butter and roll it in birdseed. Bird watching is great this time of year.

• Force the bulbs of daffodils and hyacinths. Force shrubs / trees to spring flowering in February.

• Buy herbs and keep them on the windowsill.

• Replenish necessary garden supplies. Go shopping at garden centers. You can find great deals out of season. Also check out favorite online sites.

• Work on “artistic” garden projects. There are tons of ideas for making something beautiful. Plan and work with friends.

Now there is a list that should keep you busy and help you stay in the gardening mindset.

For more inspiration, visit: http://go.osu.edu/wintertasks.

McKinley is a volunteer master gardener with the Ohio State University Mahoning County Extension.

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