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19 January 2020
If the farmers have not been able to get on the land then best We gardeners don’t stamp all over our waterlogged lawns and damage our soil structure. 

Great to see new Agricultural bill talking about protecting our soil and potentially moving farming subsidies to how we work the land not just how much food we produce. So what can you do?

Complete your fruit tree pruning and throw the cuttings on the bonfire which you cannot light since it’s a soggy heap. I will leave less hardy shrubs such as roses and buddleia until late February so they are not burnt by hard frosts which are bound still to get. I now leave a lot of the herbaceous stems until March as they provide valuable wildlife cover, but cut down plants like sedum that have gone soggy and will flatten even more if we have snow.

I sow my tomatoes and chillies in a heated propagator in the greenhouse late February, so that provides an opportunity to prepare the pots and seedbeds in some comparative shelter. The ferrets have been in there so the whole place needs cleaning and tidying up. 

Moving plants
While keeping off the really sticky ground, with the wet soil and mild temperatures it’s a great time to move plants growing in the wrong place like foxgloves and some bulbs. I have too many seedlings in the kitchen garden and am often too sentimental (they look beautiful) to move them.

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