What do cake and soil have in common?
First thing is first, don’t be tempted to start working in the garden while the weather is still cold and wet/damp. Winter is a sensitive time of year for soil. Even the innocent movement of footsteps around your allotment could cause it to compact and deflate in volume.
Think of your soil as cake.
A great sponge cake is light, airy and has volume. You could even add extra ingredients to enhance the flavour or texture. Meaning the end product will be even greater quality.
Well for plants, compacted soil is more like a pancake. A crepe pancake to be more specific. Flat, dense, there’s not much they can do with it.
If you want happy plants, let your soil be the sponge cake.
Keep the Compost Heap Going
We hope your compost heap is still going strong! Before you know it, you will be putting it to good use in the garden. To help you along the way, here are a few tips to improve your compost this month:
Keep the compost heap healthy by adding a mix of carbon and nitrogen ingredients.
Make use of cardboard and paper packaging used for gifts over the holiday season to balance out the wet ingredients that might have taken over during the transition to autumn/winter.
Continue to turn and aerate the compost to encourage biological activity or take it a step further and give it a boost with Compost Accelerator!
What to Grow
January is the time to consider which crops you want to grow. Begin collecting all the seeds and start planning your plot for the year! Here’s a quick guide to the sowing period for some of the most common/popular crops:
Beetroot (March – July)
Carrots (March – August)
Chillies & Peppers (March – April)
Garlic (January – March)
Peas (January – July)
Runner Beans (April – June)
Spring Onions (March – September)
Summer Radishes (January – September)
Swiss Chard (April – August)
Tomatoes (February – April)
While we encourage you to try your best to wait until the weather warms up and things are generally drier before getting to work outdoors, in the meantime,
why not consider sowing indoors?
Top crops to sow indoors in January:
These crops are usually sown in February but you can try sowing them indoors early to experiment and get your season started ahead!
Broad Beans, Lettuce/Salad Leaves, Peas, Radishes and Tomatoes
Plant Fruit Trees and Bushes
One exception to not working in the garden is when planting fruit trees and bushes. Winter is the perfect season for planting fruits because of their dormant state.
Dreaming of harvesting crops like blueberries or pears this year? Check out our beginner tips for growing fruit trees and plants.