Here are some things to do in the garden in January...
Try sun-loving combinations of ornamental grasses, gazanias or dwarf orange marigolds; mauve angelonia with purple petunias and lobelia; Browallia “Jingle Bells” and mauve ageratum with neon-pink vinca. Complement bright pink petunias and red-purple verbena with silver-grey santolina, and lime-green nicotiana with pink mini petunias and nutmeg pelargonium.
Try sun-loving combinations of ornamental grasses, gazanias or dwarf orange marigolds.
To attract a variety of butterflies to your garden, plant scabious, buddleja, pentas, verbena, daisies and cosmos and make sure there are a couple of shallow mud puddles and sun-baked rocks. Herbs that supply food for butterflies include pennyroyal, lavender, catmint and thyme.
Known as the spider plant because of the shape of its narrow white and pink petals and long seed pods, cleome is an elegant choice for the back of a border. The cup-shaped pink and white flowers of lavatera contrast well with the flowers of cleome.
If you wish to make a small garden appear larger and more interesting, an archway or sections of trellis can be used to divide one part from another.
Annuals have a natural tendency to set seed and stop blooming. By deadheading and fertilising flowering plants once a month you encourage them to continue flowering.
Give chrysanthemums a final pinch back to encourage them to bush and produce more flowers in autumn.
A garden diary is useful for recording planting, flowering and harvesting times throughout the year. It is also interesting to keep a record of the daily maximum and minimum temperature and rainfall. - Weekend Argus