With the start of a new year comes a pursuit of virtuosity; it’s the time when new skills are acquired and new goals are set. For some of you, it might finally be the year you learn French, for others, a gym membership might be calling. But, while internal, personal growth is prevalent at this time of year, take a moment to consider outside growth, too. That is, growth in the great outdoors. January is a great time to set yourself some garden goals, get into good habits and really turn over a new leaf (or get the rake out and turn over several…)
Here are five gardening resolutions to take you into 2022 and beyond…
The need to weed
Nobody likes weeding - it’s a bit like putting away clean washing or emptying the dishwasher; a laborious task that isn’t very appealing, but actually doesn’t take you that long once you get started. If you’re the kind of gardener who usually goes on a weeding war, spending hours in one go plucking and pulling, then this year consider a different approach. You’ll probably find weeding much less loathsome if you adopt a little and often process. Sometimes, just five minutes is all you need to make a difference and stop those little blighters returning so quickly. Try weeding at regular intervals - maybe once a week - and your garden will be much easier to keep on top of, especially in the spring and summer months when you’ve already quite literally done your groundwork.
Mix it up
If, until now you’ve been adopting a ‘one size fits all’ approach to your growing media, then perhaps this year consider a specialist soil perfectly tailored to your needs. If you often find yourself compensating for your soil type, by opting for a mix, you’ll really notice a difference in how your plants grow throughout the year because they’ll be able to thrive in their ideal environment, whether that’s somewhere more acidic, sandy or with added fertiliser. Explore our specialist mixes to find the one that’s right for you.
Create your own compost
There are lots of benefits to making your own compost in the garden. For one, you can use it to improve your soil quality, but it also provides a handy home for wildlife too.
Making your own is simple to do - you just need the right balance of nitrogen rich materials such as grass clippings and tree foliage, and carbon materials like wood cuttings and cardboard. Ideally you want a pretty even mix of the two, otherwise you’ll be left with a mess! Too much nitrogen and the materials will go sludgy, or go too heavy on the carbon and it’ll be a very long time before you see any compost, as these materials will take a long time to break down. If you’re looking for a way to contain your compost, our pallet compost bins are perfect.
Sometimes, it can be hard to step back and admire your hard work in the garden, which is why taking photos of your progress is really beneficial. This year, make it your mission to capture your before and after moments, as well as lots in between. Before digging out beds and borders, planting perennials or taming your trees, take plenty of photos. It’s useful to look back on them and see how far you’ve come, but having the evidence of what you’ve planted where can also be very handy when things start to spring up and your memory of planting is hazy.
Mulch to do
If you’re not already a seasoned mulcher, then make this the year you invest some time in making mulch a part of your gardening routine. Mulch protects your soil and plants, and can also keep weeds and bay and stave off some diseases. Bark makes an excellent mulch and looks good too - or a good quality compost will also do the trick. The mulch will help save you time on weeding and watering - time you can invest elsewhere in the garden this year, or use enjoying some well-earned leisure time.