Flower & plant growing guide for January
24th January 2022
While winter is well and truly among us, that doesn’t mean you have to forsake your garden or that you can’t start growing new flowers and plants. In the month of January, you can get cracking with all sorts of jobs; sowing seeds for a range of flowers - whether on a sunny windowsill or under a heated propagator - bringing colour to your current garden with winter bedding plants, and even planting deciduous hedges. To give you a few ideas for what to be getting on with at the start of the year, we have put together this helpful flower and plant growing guide. So, take a look and see what you fancy.
Sweet peas tend to flower from May/June to August, but you can start sowing them in January in the right conditions. Sweet peas are a flowering plant of the Lathyrus genus, hailing from Sicily and the south of Italy. They are a beautiful option, flowering in shades of pinks and purples, and can grow up to a height of 1-2 metres with the right support. You can start sweet peas off on a sunny windowsill indoors if you have one available or in an unheated greenhouse. The minimum temperature you are looking for is 12°C. They can be sown in tubes or pots at 7cm deep and 6cm deep respectively. Germination will take about 10-14 days.
Melissa, from the gardening blog Empress of Dirt, loves sweet peas, sharing: “Who doesn’t love sweet pea flowers? They are enchanting in the garden and have been a favourite flower for decades.” For more info on this flower, you can take a look at her tips for growing sweet peas.
Geraniums are popular bedding plants for the garden, but they are also a flower that works wonderfully indoors or in a hanging basket. Geraniums are a species of perennial plant and can bloom in all sorts of wonderfully vibrant colours. They are known as one of Britain’s best-loved flowers and emit a lovely scent, making them a great choice for the garden. This summer bedding plant flowers between June and October, but it can be sown in January in a heated propagator at 24°C. Germination takes between 3-12 days and should be sown in small trays just beneath the soil. When the weather starts improving and the frosts are gone, they can be taken outside – a sunny balcony would be a good step before planting in the garden for the summer.
The Back Garden blog shares this advice regarding Geraniums: “There are a few species that can survive an easy frost, but if you want to enjoy these plants during the winter, you have to plant them in a flowerpot, keep them indoors, and place them close to a window to receive enough light from the sun.” For more information on geraniums, take a look at their how to grow geraniums guide.
Dahlias are a tuberous and bushy plant native to Mexico that can bring the most wonderful and vibrant colours to your garden. Dahlias flower between July and November and are often grown from tubers but can be seeded in January under the right conditions. Indoors or under a heated propagator, dahlias can be sown at a minimum temperature of 18 to 21°C in small pots of compost with 10 percent vermiculite. Germination for dahlias takes about 5-20 days and should not be planted outdoors until the danger of frost has passed.
Jennifer, from the blog The Flowering Farmhouse, is a big fan of dahlias and shares this advice about sowing them: “Once you decide to grow dahlias from seed, you will want to start your dahlia seeds indoors. Start your seeds indoors 6-8 weeks prior to your last frost date. This will give your dahlia flower seeds enough time to get growing so that they can flower in the summer months. It takes about 100-120 days for the seeds to produce flowers.” For more tips, read Jennifer’s guide to growing dahlias from seed.
READ ALSO: Fruit & vegetable growing guide for December
Snapdragons, or Antirrhinum, are a summer bedding plant that can be sown in a propagator in January, paving the way for a lovely addition to your garden after a few months. They are native to Europe, North America, and North Africa, and are an easy to grow cottage-garden plant that the local bee population will quickly fall in love with. Flowering in a range of different colours and growing to various heights, they are truly versatile. They require a long period of growth so sowing them in January is ideal, planting the seeds in a tray before transporting them to a heated propagator at 20 to 25°C. Germination takes about 10 to 21 days.
Once the seedlings are large enough to handle, they can be potted up and introduced to cooler conditions gradually before planting outside once the frosts have passed.
Flowers aren’t the only plants that can be grown in January, as the first month of the year is also a great time to get planting deciduous hedges. If you have been looking to create structure, privacy, or provide a great environment for local wildlife, deciduous hedges are an ideal choice. You can plant them in January in your garden as long as the ground isn’t frozen, and each plant should be soaked in water for an hour beforehand. Plant them in your trench – about a spade depth deep – water well and admire your new hedge once spring and summer come around.
Frosts Garden Centre share some of the virtues of these hedges: “Deciduous hedging plants often have beautiful flowers and berries that attract wildlife to the garden, contributing to biodiversity. Many shrubs have fabulous autumn foliage, too.” You can read about some of the different types of deciduous hedges in Frosts Garden Centre’s deciduous hedge planting guide.
Winter bedding plants
If you want to kickstart your garden right now and bring some colour to your space, you can always invest in some winter bedding plants. For some, the process of growing a plant from seed might not be for them, or you might not have the space indoors for sowing, so instead, head down to your local garden centre and pick up a few winter bedding plants that you can plant in your garden right now.
Catherine, from the blog Growing Family, shares a few ideas to consider: “Pansies, violas, cyclamen, ivy and heather are all great options for creating a colourful winter display. Consider also using evergreen grasses to bulk up containers and provide foliage, texture and height.”
Some other winter bedding options include wallflowers, primroses, violas, and forget-me-nots.
READ ALSO: Flower & plant growing guide for October
Flowers and plants to grow in January
- Sweet Peas
- Deciduous hedges
- Winter bedding plants
If you have limited mobility, perhaps using a stair lift at home, but want to get your garden ready for spring and summer, then hopefully some of these plants and flowers will make great additions to your beds and pots. If you are out in the garden, make sure to take care in winter conditions and leave any tricky jobs for more appropriate weather.
For more tips, guides, and advice, make sure to visit our news page.
This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.