Things to do in your garden this month.
Taken from the Ontario Master Gardener Calendar
by John Hethrington
Past President, Master Gardeners of Ontario.
Please contact John for more information!
December 2022 Garden Tips:
After the early heavy wet snow in late November and the helpful mild spell that followed, here are a few things you still can do in December. There is no end to garden chores.
- Cut down tall perennials and ornamental grasses bent over by the heavy snow.
- Loosely wrap evergreens and especially rhododendrons with Burlap. It is better to use 3 tomato stakes and make a triangle of burlap, as high as the plant and 6” away from it to break the drying wind and shield it from the winter sun.
- Protect young trees and shrubs from rodents with spiral plastic wraps. I know they look ugly, but they are white to reflect the sun and minimize sun scalding.
- Hill up the soil and/or compost around your hybrid tea roses and other tender plants and shrubs.
- I place loose straw over my potentially tender Phenomenal and Czech lavender to create an igloo of protection.
- Bring in, drain and store all hoses and water related equipment. Blow out garden water lines before they freeze.
- Wash all your garden tools. Wipe the metal parts with a cloth soaked in 3-in-1oil. If you really want to be fancy, wipe the wooden handles with boiled linseed oil.
- Make sure you have stocked up on firewood for the fire place this winter.
- With all the recently arrived and disappeared snow the ground will not yet be frozen, so you can still plant those spring bulbs that you forgot in your garage.
- I once planted tulips on Christmas Day in my garden by the sidewalk in downtown Toronto. An elderly gentleman passed by and asked, “Whatever are you doing?” I told him “It’s an old Hethrington tradition, I always plant tulips and daffs on Christmas Day”. He shuffled off, shaking his head, but there were blooms in April. So, stick any bulbs you can find in the ground before it freezes.
- Inside, check to see that your house humidifier is maintaining the humidity at over 40% to benefit both house plants and your family.
- Put lots of garden tools and garden books on your Christmas list
- Order seed catalogues and start dreaming about SPRING!
Merry Christmas from your Beaver Valley Master Gardener
John Hethrington, Past President, Master Gardeners of Ontario