It’s the start of the year, and you may be looking at the next project in your yard. If you are looking for a guide, UF/IFAS has an excellent publication called the North Florida Gardening Calendar. Let us walk through some of the suggestions provided in the calendar.
Let’s start with what should be planted in January. During this month, we are still in the cold, dry season. Consider installing annual cold-season plants like pansies, petunias, and geraniums. It’s also a great time to start planting bulbs like the crinum lily, gloriosa lily, and daylilies. January is also the time to install your camellias. If you are adventurous, install a couple of Camellia sinensis. The new leaves can be dried to make your own tea. Finally, continue with winter crops like broccoli, kale, and lettuce in your vegetable garden, but don’t forget to get your potatoes into the ground. Don’t forget, it is an excellent time to plant fruit trees.
Let’s now move to landscape maintenance. Be watchful of any freeze warnings and be ready to cover any frost-tender plants. Remember that Florida grass and turf go dormant during the cold season, so minimal irrigation is needed. Prune trees and shrubs that do not bloom in the spring. Remove the seed pods and any branches that touch each other on your crape myrtle. January is also an excellent time to prune and fertilize your fruit trees. Scout your trees and shrubs for potential insect problems.
Finally, don’t forget to celebrate Florida Arbor Day. Several events occur around the county. Consider planting a tree in your yard, and if you need suggestions, please call the Extension office, and I would be happy to provide some guidance.