December Gardening Tips 2022 - Squires Garden Centres

December Gardening Tips 2022

Can it really be December already? It has been so mild that I, for one, have hardly thought about preparing for Christmas yet. But with less than four weeks to go, I had better start making lists.

I am always tempted to bringing living plants into my home for the festive period and beyond, and of course houseplants make great gifts. Poinsettias are the traditional Christmas choice. I am rather a fan of some of the cream and pink varieties that are now available. They make a nice change from the red we all know and love. Poinsettias are tender and love a warm space. They hate draughts, so always make sure they are well wrapped up leaving the shop and do not leave them locked up in a cold car.

For scent, pick a basket of  bulbs on the point of flowering, which can be planted out in the garden when they have finished.  Jasmin and Stephanotis are both highly fragrant and carry pretty white flowers. Azaleas and Cyclamen prefer a cooler spot in the home. Alternatively, there are so many foliage houseplants which will give you colour, texture and movement for a long time to come and so represent great value.

It wouldn’t be December without mentioning real Christmas trees. I love the scent and movement of a real tree. When you get your real tree home, always cut a piece off the stem before immersing the bottom of the stem in a bucket of water.  Do keep your tree cool outside until you are ready to bring it inside to decorate. Use a tree stand that holds water and keep your tree watered, as you would a vase of flowers, and away from a radiator or other heat source to prolong needle retention. We source Christmas trees grown in Scotland because they are good quality and don’t have to travel as far as trees from the continent. Grown as a crop, more trees are consistently being planted on land which is usually unsuitable for other forms of farming or horticulture.

Outside, as a result of the mild autumn, we have yet to mow for the last time this year because the grass is still growing! And, in our garden, not all the deciduous trees and shrubs have totally shed their leaves. I know they will as soon as we get the first really chilly spell. Don’t waste those leaves. They make a great addition to your compost heap well mixed with household peelings, lawn cuttings, tea bags and other plant based detritus. Leaf mould is a fantastic soil improver, a great way to introduce additional organic matter when you mulch, but the leaves must be properly broken down/composted first.


It is also a good time to check your pots, raise them up on bricks or pot feet to help prevent them becoming waterlogged which can cause roots to rot or pots to fracture due to frost damage.

Autumn planting and caring for container pots

Our feathered friends are well worth cosseting a bit at this time of year and throughout the winter, with a good supply of quality bird food, fat balls and any apples that may be just past their best in the fruit bowl (remove the pips if possible). Don’t forget a supply of clean fresh water. I always feel repaid many times over by the sight of beautiful birds in the garden from tiny blue tits and festive robins to more haughty woodpeckers.

On behalf of all the Squire’s team may I wish you and your families a Christmas full of light, joy and hope and a peaceful New Year.


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