What to do on the frosty mornings.
A beautiful sunrise this morning, but of course a clear sky at this time of year means frost. And whilst ground conditions may not be ideal there is always plenty of routine jobs to do.
Depending on the aspect of a garden you may not be too harshly touched by frost, or the ground can be as hard as iron. A couple of things not to do are firstly mulch, as this only locks cold into the soil from which point it takes a long time to warm up in spring for plant growth. Also you shouldn't dig as it actively incorporates cold in to the soil and this again is not beneficial. A bit of light weeding however can be done if necessary if your ground is not too hard.
Often a frost at ground level doesn't frost branches so routine pruning can be carried out. It is now the perfect time of year to prune Roses, Buddleja davidii, and a whole host of climbers and wall shrubs including Wisteria. Winter debris can be raked off in oramental areas for aesthetics, and if ground conditions allow lawns can be aerated.
Always condsider wildlife in the garden at this time of year. Keep bird feeders topped up and if like us you have ponds, always keep them ice free during the day by breaking up the surface, so that fish and other pond life can breath.
Of course every gardeners favourite job can take place now. That is pouring through the pages of our favourite seed catalogues to start planning for the year ahead. Spring is just a few weeks away after all.
Below: Pruning Rosa 'Albertine' on the Terrace steps.