Green-fingered Brits have urged to prepare their gardens for 2019 before the dawn of spring, or risk an uphill struggle later in the year.
The team behind online garden centre GardeningExpress.co.uk have revealed six tasks that British gardeners should undertake in January, to ready their backyards for the next twelve months.
Chris Bonnett, founder of GardeningExpress.co.uk, said: “There’s a well-known saying: fail to prepare – prepare to fail; and this couldn’t be more true than in the garden.
“If green-fingered Brits neglect their backyards during January, they could regret it later in the year and find there too far down the line to make desired changes.
“So our expert researchers have compiled a list of seven tasks that UK gardeners can check off before the arrival of spring, to ensure their garden is truly ready for a glorious 2019 ahead.”
Here are the six tasks to get your garden ready for 2019:
1. Get cutting: After a cold December of neglect, Britain’s backyard lawns will need sprucing up with a quick trim in January, or risk becoming an overgrown mess as spring dawns. If the garden has trees, large hedges or shrubbery, they should also be given any necessary cutting before significant growth restarts in warmer weather.
2. Start composting: Refreshing and restarting the backyard compost bin or heap for the new year will facilitate the best quality organic fertiliser later in the year. For first-time composters, January is the ideal time to begin building up a pile of organic waste, that can be spread on soil to give plants a nutritional boost when they need it throughout the coming twelve months.
3. Lend birds a hand: British gardeners should use the onset of another year to resolve to lend a hand to birds in their backyards, by installing a bird feeder, a bath or bowl for water and a box or shrubs for shelter. Failure to do this promptly could leave birds vulnerable to the worsening wintery conditions; they might, too, remember they weren’t helped during the colder months and head to a neighbour’s garden instead if they survive until spring blossoms.
4. Grab a pen and paper: Maintaining a great outdoor space should start inside UK households, with a trusty notepad, some fresh ideas and a whole heap of organisation. Keep on top of garden tasks throughout 2019 by sitting down during January to produce a detailed and timed plan. On top of organisation, research is vital to lay firm foundations for the year ahead; seek advice from friends, family, public gardens or the internet.
5. Give the shed a once over: The start of a new year is also the perfect time to update backyard supplies for the changing conditions over the months ahead. Fix any broken tools, make any new purchases as soon as possible and restock shed supplies to make the most of the garden during 2019. It’s vital, too, to properly organise outdoor supplies and tools to avoid confusion later and the year, and to treat wooden sheds with a protective coat of varnish to make sure they are well protected.
6. Stop feline visitors: Next door’s cat can be put off from using the backyard as a toilet with natural obstacles such as well-placed pine cones or branches at potential garden entrances. Peel from citrus fruits or spare coffee granules placed in backyard borders will also deter feline visitors via their noses, whilst a layer of chicken wire carefully positioned under mulch in flowerbeds will make trying to enter the garden uncomfortable for cats. It’s necessary to take these anti-feline measures as soon as possible though, to avoid a messy mass clear-up operation in the future.