The Ornamental Garden in December
Like last month, much of what can be done this month will be subject to weather and soil conditions.
If the the ground / soil becomes very wet or frozen, avoid walking on it, and delay the tasks in hand, till suitable conditions prevail.
Should your mail order plants arrive, and you find you can't plant them out, just remove them from their packaging, and place them in a spot sheltered from the worst of the weather.e.g. an unheated conservatory, garage, garden shed, unheated greenhouse or coldframe.
Week 49 - 1st Dec. to 7th Dec.
Continue to plant hardy Trees, Shrubs, and Rose bushes when weather and soil conditions are suitable.
Ensure that stored mail order plants do not dry out completely.
If needs be, place them en-mass, in a bucket/s and cover the root systems with moist compost as a temporary measure.
Mulch Helleborus niger (Christmas Rose) with bark chippings, treat the area with a proprietory slug killer to protect the young growth and flower buds from slugs and snails, then cover the plants with cloches.
Wrap tree guards around newly planted young trees to protect them from rabbits or deer.
Week 50 - 8th Dec. to 14th Dec.
Fetch potted Azaleas into a warmer environment for the winter if this has not been done previously.
Week 51 - 15th Dec. to 21st Dec.
Tender Containerised plants may suffer in freezing weather, so it is advisable to move them into a greenhouse, conservatory or storm porch until conditions improve.
If this is not practicle, place the containers in a spot that is sheltered from the worst of the weather and try to keep the compost as dry as possible.
Wrapping the container/s in plastic bubble sheeting or straw will help to insulate them from freezing conditions.