December Gardening

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December in the Garden

Vegetables and Fruits

Store seeds and a cool, dry place, for example, a sealed jar in the refrigerator.
Check vegetables in storage for spoilage.
Mulch strawberries for winter protection.
Clean and oil garden hand tools for winter.


Mulch roses by mounding soil 6 to 8 inches deep over the grafts.
Mulch perennial beds with 2 to 4 inched of straw, shredded leaves, or other lightweight material.

Cut tall hybrid tea roses back to 18 to 24 inches to reduce wind damage.
Continue to plant spring flowering bulbs until the ground is frozen. Water and mulch.

Give plants or gift certificates as holiday gifts for gardening friends.
Empty decorative pots and containers. Store inside or decorate for winter.


Pick up fallen leaves from lawn to prevent suffocation of the turf during winter.
Store lawn fertilizers in a dry location out of reach of children and pets.

Trees and Shrubs

Keep heavy snowfall from limbs of trees and shrubs by lightly shaking to avoid damage.

Protect the trunks of young trees from rabbit damage with wraps.
Natural Christmas trees are special. I donít like plastic ones!

Prune damaged branches throughout the winter months.
Water newly planted trees and shrubs in winter in dry soil conditions.
Mulch roots of tender shrubs such as azaleas and rhododendrons.

Prune branches of junipers, pines, hollies, and other plants to use as holiday decorations.


Start planning for next year by making notes and preparing orders.
 Turn compost pile to encourage winter breakdown.


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