January 2 –January 8
1. Think strawberry shortcake and fresh strawberry jam. Plant dormant strawberries now for spring harvest. Consider planting in a raised bed, hanging basket, a barrel or attractive strawberry jar.
2. Prune your dormant trees, especially fruit trees this month but wait to prune spring-flowering trees or shrubs until they have bloomed.
3. It’s not too late for the first application of spray on dormant plants or to follow up with a second or third shot to kill insect and fungus pests before spring.
4. Move houseplants that need high light closer to light source while days are short.
January 9–January 15
1. Prepare your planting beds for roses, fruit and shade trees, cane berries and deciduous shrubs now available in dormant form.
2. Select your camellias now because they are at their blooming peak. They bloom best when planted in spots sheltered from strong sun and dry winds. Add several inches of mulch around the new planting. Keep mulch away from the trunk of the plant so it can breathe.
3. Rake up leaves and debris from lawn so overwintering spores and diseases won’t infect the grass.
4. Don’t forget to feed winter flowering plants along with your lawn and garden. Choose primroses, iceland poppies, pansies, violas, cinerarias, stocks and snapdragon for great early color.
January 16 – January 22
1. Plant artichokes now. Fill a hole with one part humus and two parts soil. Plant with buds at surface and add mulch after growth starts.
2. If your lawn has a tendency toward crabgrass in the summer this is the proper time to control it. Give your lawn a combination high-nitrogen feeding containing a pre-emergence material to combat crabgrass. Check with a California Certified Nursery Professional for the best recommendation for your area.
3. Prune your roses this month. Leave only the most vigorous and healthiest canes. If you aren’t sure what the proper procedure is, check with a California Certified Nursery Professional for advice.
4. Spray peaches now and again when the flowers are in popcorn or pink bud stage. This spraying will help prevent peach leaf curl. Ask for the proper materials to use at a California Assoc. of Nurserymen member nursery.
January 23 – January 29
1. Early blooming shrubs to plant now are forsythia, wisterias, daphnes and flowering quince.
2. Check those plants under eaves, in containers and in protected areas for moisture. It’s easy to forget that Mother Nature can’t reach into protected corners.
3. Make your first planting of gladiolus this month and follow up with additional plantings at 15 to 25-day intervals until July for color from spring to early fall.
4. Slugs and snails begin working as temperatures rise. Keep your cool by using a good snail bait. Ask a California Certified Nursery Professional for a recommendation.