By: Pat Cordray
It is hard to believe we are here, the end of the year, the holidays, and maybe even cooler temperatures. We have had lots of sun in November and not enough rain. Usually, I’m able to turn off my sprinkler system in October and wait until March to turn them back on. Not so this year, everything is dry and I have to hand water to make sure that all the plants get a drink. What kind of gardening can we do this month? There is still a lot of gardening to do, even if it is December. It is not too late to add color to your garden or containers, vegetables are still an option and camellias.
Now for the freeze warning. If we have a freeze warning for our area, first water your plants; this protects the roots, so water thoroughly, not just for 60 seconds. Next, cover your plants tenting the fabric to the ground then secure it with pegs. Once the weather warms up remove the fabric. Use fabric made to protect plants or use fabric to cover the plant and plastic to cover the fabric, like a windbreaker. For hanging baskets, take them in or set them on the ground, water and cover. For plants in containers, take them in or water and cover. These instructions are for plants that are tender to the cold. This doesn’t freeze proof your tender plants but it will help add a little warmth and that may be all that is needed to save a plant. It is better to be prepared than scrambling around at the last minute trying to find your cold weather gardening supplies. So, place your N-Sulate cloth and pegs where you can find them. The Nursery usually keeps these supplies in stock if needed.
Plants for fall and winter have wonderful bright vibrant color. Here are a few of the beautiful plants that bloom this time of year. The pansy
Frizzle Sizzle Pansy
Blooms best in full sun
but can bloom in part shade
Snapshot 6-10″ tall
Montego 8-10″ tall
Solstice 16-20″ tall
Sonnet 18-24″ tall
Rocket 24-36″ tall
Floral Lace Dianthus
These are just 3 examples of beautiful color for now. Brighten up your garden with any of these.
What else can you plant in December? You can still plant vegetables. Plant cauliflower, broccoli, green onions, Brussels sprouts, leeks, greens, and turnips. Get busy now so you can eat soon!
Camellias are another beautiful fall through spring bloomer. There aren’t too many flowers, that bloom down here, as beautiful. Check out the pictures below
So much beauty!
Enjoy your garden,