December?! When did that happen? Well, folks, whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just getting started, December can be a busier month than you might expect. After all, preparing for your best growing season yet takes plenty of work and preparation. That’s why in this week’s blog, we’re here to share a handy to-do list to keep you busy this December.
Lawn & Pond
If you run your pond pump during the winter, raise it on to a ledge in the pond to recirculate only the top layer of water.
Watch water levels, as ice can cause overflow and cause damage to surrounding fixtures or plants.
There are two key elements when it comes to helping your pond fish survive the winter. The first is to ensure your fish don’t freeze and the second is to ensure they’re getting adequate oxygen. To do this, you’re going to want to have a Pond Aerator or Aqua Jet Pump. Both will create a more stable environment for your fish by increasing air circulation which will prevent your pond from freezing and provide your fish with the oxygen they need to survive while preventing unwanted gas build-up.
Add cold-water beneficial bacteria.
If keeping your pond running during the winter, add pond de-icer.
Due to their natural ability to hibernate, you must not feed your fish during the winter months. To survive such cold temperatures their bodies adapt by lowering their metabolisms and using their energy to stay moving, instead of digesting. Feeding your fish during this process is likely to cause damage or death by choking or toxicity.
If your pond is already frozen, do not break the ice. Breaking into a frozen pond could be deadly for fish either by striking them or stunning them from the vibrations.
To prevent damages, turn off any water fixtures like waterfalls.
Watch for the first Christmas rose (Helleborus niger) blossoms outdoor and Chinese witch hazel (Hamamelis Mollis) branches can be brought indoors for fragrant blooms.
Poinsettia care: Remember the 3 M’s. Moderate bright light, moderate watering and moderate temperature. Avoid access to hot or cold areas.
Protect fragile plants by staking, wrapping and mulching. Such as dahlias, trees, azaleas and rhododendrons.
With proper care, a real Christmas tree should last 5 weeks or longer, making the first week of December the perfect time to put up a real Christmas tree. Remember to water the root ball and spray the branches with “wilt proof” to prevent excess drying. If the weather is severely cold after Christmas, acclimatize the tree by hardening off in stages.
Do not cut holly while the weather is freezing. This will make the berries black. Fresh evergreen boughs can be cut anytime to maintain a fresh supply indoors. Spruce, balsam and cedar boughs will last the longest.
The best selection of spring bulbs is available now. Wildwood Outdoor Living has the largest selection around, online and in-store! Be sure to plan out your garden ahead of your visit to make sure you have the right growing conditions for your bulb choices.
Clear gutters of all debris to prevent damage and ensure proper drainage for spring.
Keep feeding birds to help them during harsh winters.
Continue composting, everything you save now with warm up in no time in the spring.
Remove heavy snow fall from branches as the weight can cause damage which will invite unwanted pests and disease.
Looking for more to do this December? Check out the latest episode of Get Up and Grow with our President, Gord Nickel for a little bit of indoor inspiration, below.
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