Gardening in January

Apply dormant sprays on roses and fruit trees this month or next. Lime sulfur or copper fungicides help control diseases. Cleaning up leaf debris underneath the plant will also help.

Have your garden soil tested for the proper pH. If lime is needed, this month gives you time for correction if necessary. Avoid tilling soil if too wet.

If you plan to do grafting, this is a good time to take the cuttings. Take them now and store until spring when the host wood starts to sprout. Store the cuttings in a moist wrap in a cool location.

Seed racks are going up in your favorite garden center this month. It is time to start your planning now.

Watch for snow or ice build-up on trees and shrubs. Sometimes a good shake will save a prize plant. Upright evergreens like arborvitae can be tied into place.

Find a nice day to select primroses. These tough beauties are colorful and very winter-hardy. Plant in light shade or sun.

Slug populations are very low now, but will increase soon. Stop them early. Put bait out just before a sunny day for best results. Shield from pets and rain. Organic methods are also available.

Peach leaf curl protection goes on this month before leaf or bloom buds begin and during swelling. Genetic dwarf trees in large pots under shelter from rain are generally safe.

Remember the bulbs you planted in pots last fall? Crocus, early tulips, and narcissus showing any green shoots will show blooms quickly in a sunny window. Indoor flowers for an outdoor price!

Bare root roses and fruit trees arrive late this month. You will find these are less expensive or of better quality than those from mail order sources or in discount stores.

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