While December brings below
freezing temperatures to many parts of the country, it is an opportunity for
southern California gardeners to finish up on fall planting and undertake
garden maintenance projects.
Plant Artichokes: Buying artichokes at the market can be
expensive so planting these perennials can be a smart decision. Planted now,
they can begin producing in summer. Don't be surprised, however, if the first
crop is disappointing or non-existent. It may take two growing cycles for the
plants to mature to the point of growing sizable artichokes.
Get Creative With Your Garden: Think outside the box and plant vegetables that
don’t get the most attention. These include such cool weather vegetables as
asparagus, beets, Brussel sprouts, cabbage and celery.
Ignore Roses: Trim off flowers and then let your roses "harden" for winter. No need to fertilize.
Buy (Or Rent) A Living Christmas Tree: Many
families make it a tradition to purchase living Christmas trees and then plant
them in their yard once the holidays are over. When purchasing a living tree to
later plant, research the type of tree that would best fit your yard. Pine
trees are messy, have large root systems and can grow to 40 feet or higher.
They also need a significant amount of water. Pine trees that do well in the
region are Afghan pine, Aleppo pine, Coast redwood and Deodar cedar. Do not keep a
live tree indoors more than two weeks or it will begin to drop its needles. For
another environmentally healthy alternative to purchasing a cut Christmas tree,
in some parts of southern California, live Christmas trees are available for rent
Living Christmas Company.
Plants: Place container plants next to south or west-facing
walls so they will absorb reflected daytime heat and stay shielded from wind. Move
cacti, succulents and potted trees under cover for protection from cold and
Attend To Fruit Trees: Spray horticulture oils or lime-sulfur onto deciduous
fruit trees. This will control diseases such as leaf curl caused by insects.
Leaf curl can reduce the amount of fruit that is produced so spraying now will
help summer production. You can also prune deciduous fruit trees this month.
Keep Lawns Healthy In Winter: Fill in bare spots with seeds, followed by soil
amendment and plenty of water. Rake leaves from lawns. Mow as needed.
Labels: healthy winter lawns, plant artichokes; winter vegetables, rent a Christmas tree, Southern California winter gardens, what to plant in winter