Happy New Year! So, it’s back to the grind, the excitement of the festive period has ended and the time off from work or university has faded into view.  January can make us all feeling a little bit grey. Whether attending to your domestic or commercial garden is either a release or a New Years’ resolution – lots can be achieved in your outdoor space this month. Maybe it’s pruning deciduous trees, scanning seeds or just leaving food and water out for wildlife.

Winter Forest

January is a time for planning and evaluating what you want to achieve this year. Prepare and get organised. Working on plants now is somewhere to start as when it comes to spring and growing season they start off with an advantage.

Here’s what else you should consider doing in January:

Trees and Shrubs

  • For newly planted trees, inspect stakes and wires make sure they’re not damaging the bark
  • Stake leggy plants so they’re protected against ice breakage and wind
  • Don’t remove ice and if it’s snowed, leave it in place as an insulator. Remove it gently if it’s too heavy and threatens to break the plant
  • Prune shrubs and dormant trees
  • Wait to prune spring shrubs until after bloom
  • Make sure your winter roses are covered or firmly tied
  • Bring branches that are spring flowers indoors for forcing

Perennials and Bulbs

  • To protect evergreen perennials from the freezing winter months use boughs as an extra layer
  • Every couple of weeks, check your stored tender bulbs and get rid of any rotten ones. If some look withered, then mist them lightly with water
  • Help faded blossoms by clipping them
  • Take a tour of your commercial or domestic garden and see if any plants have been uprooted by frost

Annuals and Containers

  • Continue from December to protect tender container plants from the continuing freezing temperatures
  • Water container plants
  • For winter blooming pansies feed them a bloom-boosting fertiliser

The Grass

  • Don’t walk or drive on frozen grass
  • Apply postemergence weed control

Fruit & Veg

  • Inspect the likes of apples and potatoes and other stored fruits and veg for decay. Increase air circulation to prevent further damage and get rid of anything that looks spoiled
  • Add nitrogen fertiliser if winter veg looks yellow
  • Make sure to prune fruit trees
  • Add dormant spray to fruit trees. Don’t spray when its windy, rainy or when freezing temperatures are forecast
  • It’s important to sow seeds inside for spring vegetable planting


  • Keep houseplants in bright airy spaces and away from drafts
  • Water plants less regularly and decrease fertilisation
  • Attend to any insect and pest problems with your houseplants
  • Keep them clean by rinsing or gently wiping
  • Give plants that extra bit of protection by closing curtains and make sure plants don’t wither by touching cold glass
  • If you have a small cactus, water sparingly but keep in direct sunlight
  • If you have new houseplants that need transported into the house, cover or wrap them during transportation to keep them from freezing during the trip

Maintenance and Clean Up

  • If the ground isn’t frozen, bury downspouts, install French drains, and drain pipes and watch for general drainage problems in the garden
  • Feed the birds
  • Clean and repair garden tools
  • Sharpen the blades in the lawn mower or take it to a repair shop
  • Repair and inspect leaky sheds, porches and other garden structures
  • Before the vines start growing invest in fences and walkways

January is the perfect time to plan, prepare and design how you want your outdoor space to look this year. Whether it’s your back garden at home or to invest in your commercial space to attract new customers.

At PBL we have years of experience in all aspects of winter landscaping. If you’re looking for a hand in any aspect of your garden landscape, then please get in touch today.

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