What about brightening your doorway with a container of winter blooming camellia? Choose one that meets the sun/shade conditions at your front door. With routine care it will last for years in the same pot.
Time to get out the grow light. Nurseries will be starting to feature spring seed, and the best selection is available now. The seed varieties most appropriate for our area — both vegetables and ornamentals—will be the first to disappear. When you're choosing quantity, remember seeds will remain viable for three years if stored properly.
Avoid planting or digging in your garden while soil is saturated.
Time to use dormant spray on orchard trees. Check with the Oregon State University extension for spray schedules for specific fruit varieties.
Protect tree bark in the landscape and orchard. Trunks can either be wrapped with burlap or the lower half painted with white latex paint, (exterior type). This will minimize sunscald and splitting during freeze/thaw cycles. Mix the paint one to one with water.
Clean bird feeders monthly at a minimum. An alcohol wipe can help minimize buildup between thorough cleanings.
Water is an important consideration for wild animals in cold weather. An unfrozen bird bath will get plenty of use, especially if winter rains dry up and nature supplies fewer shallow puddles. Heaters are available to break the ice.
Make sure you check pond filtration systems to keep water moving. Fish will stay in hibernation until the water temperature rises above 50 degrees.
Clean up leaves to prevent them from causing bare spots.
Check soil pH to see if it is below 6.0. Grass does best in a slightly alkaline soil, so add lime according to package directions. Winter rains will help deliver the mineral into the soil.
The winter hours for the plant clinic at the OSU extension center are Tuesdays and Thursdays between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. at 569 Hanley Road, Central Point. Call 541-776-7371. For additional information about Master Gardener programs, check online: http://extension.orst.edu/sorec/mg
Monday, Jan. 7
Fur and feathers
Bob Reynolds, OSU extension agent
CENTRAL POINT (664-1726)
Wednesday, Jan. 9
Creative containers and
vases for floral design