Kingswood Gardening News – January 2018

Winter scent and colour in your garden.
By Sarah Wilson

If you do brave the cold and rain this month it is nice to have something with colour and scent in your garden. Not only will this please you, but it will also ensure that birds and insects have something to eat over the winter months.

Here are some good examples of low maintenance plants which are good for winter scent:

Sarcococca confusa
Chimonanthus praecox
Mahonia x media ‘Charity’
Iris unguicularis
Viburnum x bodnantense ‘Dawn’
Snowdrops
Edgeworthia chrysantha
Hamamelis mollis

These plants are quite slow growing but worth waiting for and will suddenly repay your patience with their lovely winter flowers. You can see all of them at RHS Wisley where they have very large plants but you can also buy them at local nurseries, plant and wait for them to grow.

Iris unguicularis

Viburnum x bodnantense

Edgeworthia chrysantha

Many of these are also very attractive so give your garden scent and colour. There are two other plants which look good in January and are easy to grow in our soil – Garrya elliptica and Skimmia japonica and seem to be left alone by birds so the berries and tassels last all through the winter.

Garrya elliptica

Jobs to do in January

  • Provide food and water for garden birds
  • Complete pruning of Wisteria
  • Plant bare-root trees and shrubs
  • Remove fallen leaves from the lawn and where you have planted spring bulbs
  • Keep an eye out for weeds and remove them whilst they are small.
  • Dig up large clumps of perennials, divide and replant
  • Remove the leaves from Hellebores
  • Buy and plant summer flowering bulbs such as gladioli and lilies
  • Keep deadheading your Polyanthus, winter pansies and Viola to keep them going until spring

A pair of good strong wellies, waterproof trousers, hat and lined garden gloves are a must for January gardening!

Dr Sarah Wilson, a long time resident in The Warren, regularly opens her garden in the summer months with the National Garden Scheme.

To contact Sarah please click here

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