Bare root stock, berries, fruit and shade trees, grapes, ornamental shrubs and roses and perennial vegetables like asparagus, horseradish and rhubarb can be planted when the soil is workable. If you can't plant right away, keep the roots from drying out by heeling in plants: place them on their sides in a shallow trench and cover with moist sawdust or soil.
Hardy perennials such as Columbine, Delphinium, Hellebore, Veronica and Violas can be started from seed in green houses or cold frames. Set plants outside when they develop one or two true sets of leaves, but not more than a month before the last frost.
Prune Fruit trees on a day when temperatures are well above freezing. Use sharp bladed tools to make clean cuts. Spray dormant oils on over wintering insects.
We often have cold dry weather in January along with drying winds. Plants need water in winter as well as in summer. Remember to water, the colder the weather the more moisture it sucks out of the air and the ground. Protect more tender shrubs with some kind of wrapping during cold snaps, some stakes and a sheet or other type of cover can keep the plant from suffering from the drying winds and cold temperatures. Remember to remove the covers as soon as the weather warms and don't use plastic unless you plan to remove it during the sunny days.
Start your campaign against slugs now. Whenever it's warm slugs wake up and start nibbling. Put out Sluggo, Worry Free or other brands of slug bait that contain Iron Phosphate. These new slug baits are safe for birds, pets and children. Place near rocks, large pots, pavers, along house foundations and in dense ground covers as well as the edge of the lawn.
Washington State University Extension Master Gardener volunteers
provide non-biased, research-based information on home horticulture and
environmental stewardship in Grays Harbor and Pacific Counties,
Washington. The purpose of this non-profit foundation is educational:
to enhance the Washington State University Master Gardener outreach
program and to make our homes and communities as healthy and beautiful