Gardener’s Checklist: 5 Things to Do Midwinter

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 Winter is a good time to set gardening goals for the year. One might be to share time and knowledge in the garden with loved ones, or volunteer for garden-related community projects.

Winter is a good time to set gardening goals for the year. One might be to share time and knowledge in the garden with loved ones, or volunteer for garden-related community projects.

The garden may sleep through winter, but there’s no need for the gardener to do the same. With fewer chores and maintenance to perform outdoors, you may find yourself with some spare time. Here are a few ways to put that time to good use, so that this becomes your best gardening year yet.

1. Assess the garden’s backbone.
With summer’s lush greenery and flowers out of the way, take a look at the trees, shrubs and hardscape that make up the foundation of your garden. Where could you add something to improve the winter view and provide a better backdrop in other seasons, too?

2. Connect with other gardeners.
Often, garden clubs are most active from September through May, and public gardens and shops are offering events to draw visitors during this “off season.” Join a club or search for classes or lectures to attend at local botanical garden or nursery.

3. Make garden resolutions.
It could be to try a new plant or technique, abstain from pesticides, volunteer in a garden-related way, take a class…the sky’s the limit. Think about how you yourself want to grow this year and write down how you’ll accomplish it.

4. Get organized.
Is there a portion of your gardening life that’s cluttered or confusing? Spend a few hours one week sorting through your shed or garage, organizing your tools and materials. Or set up a three-ring binder or a system on your computer to keep track of plants, supplies and tasks.

5. Plan, plan, plan.
Most likely this is already part of your winter routine, but it bears repeating because it’s so much fun. Sketch new garden areas, revisions to current beds or container-planting ideas. Spring will arrive before you know it!

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