December reminders in the garden


Posted on: 3rd January, 2014

Category: Home, Garden & Environment

Contributor: West Cork People

By John Hosford –

1. Ensure glasshouses and polytunnels are secure. Replace broken or missing glass. Repair torn polythene.

2. Check your glasshouse heaters are in full working order.

3. Prune apples and pears. Check for canker infections. Clean up infections with a wire brush. Treat with Medo.

4. Prune Acers, Birch and vines before Christmas.

5. Harvest winter maturing vegetables now including parsnips, root crops such as carrots and swedes, winter cabbage and brussel sprouts.

6. If you have cauliflower maturing now, protect the curds from frost damage.

7. Continue planting of trees and shrubs.

8. Plant potted and bare root hedging.

9. Houseplants should be watered sparingly this month — watering early in the day. Use lukewarm water especially in cooler weather. Keep water off the flowers and foliage.

10. Choose your Christmas tree — come out early to choose the pick of the crop. Keep in a stand with a good reservoir of water usually up to 5 litres (1 gallon). Don’t allow the tree to dry out and remember to off lights at night.

11. Protect emerging spring bulbs against slug damage.

12. Plant rhubarb now in well prepared soil. Add well rotten farmyard manure prior to planting. Stable manure is particularly recommended or if that is not readily available choose Cork made ‘Gee-up’. You may also grow rhubarb in containers but choose a large container of at least 20” diameter.

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