It's the time of year when you just can't wait for spring and those, lighter, brighter days. But if you're itching to get back out in the garden, there's still plenty to do. So wrap up in something warm, grab your gardening gloves and make the most of the hours of daylight that we have. Avoid walking on the lawn on frosty days as this can damage the grass.
- If your old Christmas tree is still hanging around (we're talking real not plastic) this can be shredded for mulch, or cut down to fit into your green bin.
- Rake or sweep up any fallen leaves and compost them
- Clear away any dead or dying foliage from soft leaved plants and ornamental grasses
- Prune roses back to the first bud
- Give shrubs a light maintenance prune
- Whip out any early sprouting weeds
- Clear away any dead branches and twigs that have fallen
- Wash out any old pots ready for spring planting
- Scrub flags and patios of their winter coating of mud and moss
- Wash greenhouse panes and shed windows
- Clean your pond of any debris
- Now's the time to prune apple and pear trees - you need to get in there before spring while they're still dormant. Leave plum and cherry trees until summer to avoid catching silver leaf.
- Make a plan for what you want to plant this year and when, and order your seeds.
- Potatoes can be chitted ready for planting in March
- Rhubarb can be forced.
- Prune back soft fruit bushes
- Harvest brassicas, parsnips and leeks
- Food sources for garden birds are somewhat scarce at this time of the year, so make sure they don't go hungry by keeping bird feeders and bird baths topped up.
...looking out for the first snowdrops and crocus!
No snowdrops of your own? Here are the top spots to see them.