In January garden chores outdoors, if not major, are at their lowest. But there are still a few tasks that will fortunately take you only half an hour at the most to complete which is a blessing if the weather is bitterly cold.
Most of the work done will be indoors in the warmth. Using the cold months of the year for planning and preparation will free up valuable time for sowing and planting when Spring arrives.
For semi-major jobs this is a great time to clean up and repair patios and balconies ready for new pots and planters.
Are there any loose paving stones or tiles?
Level them off with sand and fill in with new cement. Replace any that are cracked or broken.
Repair or replace wind breakers and screens on balconies. This will better shelter existing perennial herbs against the harshness of blustery cold days.
Continue to check on herbs wintering in the greenhouse. Take off withered or diseased leaves and water plants at the base if the soil is dry but don`t overdo this as excess water will just add to the humidity creating an environment for mold to thrive.
Check for any water droplets from condensation that has formed on the glass walls and roof.
Wiping them down with an old towel helps keep dampness to a minimum.
Keep checking for aphids and other bugs that are sheltering alongside your plants and “nip it in the bud”, excuse the pun.
An indoor January garden activity to keep your green fingers happy is to turn your hand to growing mircogreens.
These very simple, highly nutritional herbs are packed with vitamins and minerals to sustain your health through the winter months and they are ready to harvest within a week or two, with some 10 – 25 days. Very fast indeed!
Lepidium Sativum, garden cress, a common microgreen, can be sown on trays of water-retaining materials like cotton wool or trays designed with grids for this purpose. Sow the cress at regular intervals for a continuous supply.
Great for adding to boiled eggs, salads, and green smoothies. Grow along with mustard seed for Mustard & Cress.
Are you growing a medicinal herb garden? In Ayurvedic medicine cress is used to treat several conditions. Indigestion, rheumatism, asthma, are just a few of them.
It contains high amounts of vitamin K, C, and A. Interestingly, it also contains a natural antibiotic.
Garden cress is a herb for the outdoor garden to. Left alone its tender leaves take on an even hotter flavour but left too long the leaves become tough.
Some of the commonest microgreens to grow in an indoor garden in January are:
Some uncommon microgreens to grow are:
Check out Growformore.microgreens to get a bit more info on each one and more.
Plan a balcony or patio herb garden on paper.
Draw the shape of your balcony or patio and the position of the sun throughout a summer`s day. Think of the spots that have the most sun and spots that only get some or none at all.
This will give you an idea where to place sun-loving herbs and delicate herbs that need some shade.
A small trellis can be fixed to railings to create shaded areas when the sun is at its hottest and act as a support for climbing plants or vertical hanging pots.
I have a patio table with a large parasol that acts as a shade for me and the herbs placed near it. When the sun is at its highest the plants get a break from the intense heat and are protected.
Think of wind direction! Is your balcony or patio exposed to high winds?
Think of ways to break it! That doesn`t mean go eat a tin of baked beans! Wind breakers can be created using trellises, or by fixing willow or bamboo screens.
Create height using tall pots or tiered planters and use pot caddies so you can reposition pots later if you need to. Large pots can be too heavy to move once full of soil.
Hint of Herbs is where you will get to know me a whole lot better as I busy about in my daily life. Read short snippets of herb garden related topics. Little interesting things that don`t normally find their way onto my pages.
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