December Checklist

Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way! Depending on where you live, you may already be enjoying a winter wonderland (Yes, I admit - I love snow!). And just because your garden may be hiding underneath a blanket of snow doesn’t mean you can’t accomplish some very useful gardening tasks. In fact, this might be a great time to do some of things you don’t have time to do during warmer months when you’re busy working outside. For instance, have you ever wanted to take a class on growing your own garden? How about basic rose care? Or ideas for mixed containers? This is a great time to educate yourself so that you’re all ready to go in the spring. Ask your local gardening club for recommendations on classes or workshops. General Gardening Tasks
  • Check stored produce (like winter squash) and remove any damaged or rotten fruit.
  • Start thinking about plans for next year’s garden.
  • Clean gardening equipment (and sharpen any with blades) before storing.
  • Build garden structures you’ll need for the upcoming growing season.
  • Enroll in a gardening workshop or course.
  • Plan a vacation visit to a botanical garden. To find a botanical garden near you, visit
  • Avoid overwatering houseplants.
  • Open cold frames on warm days and close on cool nights.
  • On mild days, repair garden fences or lay a stone walkway.
Mountain States
  • Use branches or other pruning remnants to hold down mulch.
  • Clean up houseplants.
  • Sow seeds of hardy vegetables in frost-free areas.
  • Mulch your strawberry patch.
  • Prune trees.
  • Prune and shape conifers.
  • In warmer sections of the state, plant gladioli.
Pacific Northwest
  • Water evergreens before the ground freezes.
  • Stakes newly planted trees and shrubs.
See? All sorts of fun tasks to accomplish in the garden this month. So get out your winter coats and get to work!