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Now it really is getting chilly, winter woolies and waterproofs are back out again! We’re all thinking about doing our best to save energy and keep ourselves warm. Slow cookers, air fryers and heated clothes airers to name a few.
It’s time to start making Christmas wreaths, something I have done for many years. Growing up on my family’s nursery and market garden I always helped my dad make wreaths every year. He made them to sell on their market stall in York and sold some to wholesale, hundreds each year.
I always use a wire ring so I can reuse it, I use responsibly sourced moss and secure it with binding wire. Once the base is nice and firm, I use stub wire to pin on the conifer so it fans outwards leaving the centre of the wreath open so you can see the hole.
I gather a range of fresh greenery and dried flowers that I collect in the summer months. Some like to make bundles and use stub wire to tie them together and pin through the moss to secure, or you can use individual pieces, however you choose to build and layer, it’s your creation so go with it.
I like to add some holly with berries, a few teasels, dried hydrangea, dried orange slices and some pine cones. Finishing with a lovely ribbon.
I love to have a home made wreath that’s a one off. If you want to keep going, why not use the same principle to make a centrepiece for your dining table to set a candle in.
There’s still work to be done outdoors, keep raking leaves to make leafmould. Finish any pruning and mulch borders. Move anything tender into the greenhouse or wrap in horticultural fleece and put into a sheltered position.
Make sure your greenhouse has had a clear-out and is sterile for the next growing season. It’s good to have indoor jobs like this to keep busy. Cleaning glass, greenhouse floors and making sure pots and trays that are to be reused are thoroughly cleaned.
It’s so important to look after your tools and equipment. After investing in good quality items they will last a long time if looked after. Always clean after using, brush off any soil and make sure they are dry. I like to use an oily rag to rub over blades and moving parts. Use grease to lubricate tools and keep them in good working order. Tighten nuts, sharpen blades.
Make sure mowers, hedge cutters and strimmers are well-serviced. Check pull cords and replace if necessary. Clean spark plugs and replace worn or loose belts. If needed, book them into a local machinery workshop for a service. Find your local Mountfield dealer here.
You may have already brought your garden furniture in for the winter, I see so many that get forgotten and neglected as soon as the summer fades. Again, we invest a lot into nice garden furniture and it deserves to be well-treated.
Try to store it over winter. Rub down wooden furniture and treat with oil, paint or varnish, whatever Is required. Keep cushions indoors so they don't get damp and spoil. Before you know it, the warm days sitting out will be here again and you will be glad to have invested the time.
Have a wonderful Christmas! I look forward to walking you through 2023 with more gardening tips and advice.