Gardening in December

Tips for Gardening in December!

Gardening To Do List - December Guide

By Trees That Please Nursery

Garden in December? Yes, December!

Winter is the perfect time to evaluate, clean, prep your soil and even plant new trees and shrubs, so you can enjoy watching them ‘wake up’ the following Spring! While you may think there is no point in continuing the care and maintenance of your garden in the winter, you are wrong!

There is so much more to do with your garden in the winter than you may think.

December is the time to give your garden a little TLC without the struggle and frustration of working outside in the heat!

While many of you may believe you need to plant during the growing season, you can and should plant year-round, including the winter months. The only time you can’t plant a tree or shrub is if the ground is frozen solid, making it difficult to dig a hole. Contrary to popular belief the cold does not negatively impact your planting a tree or shrub, as long as it is deciduous.


Winter is also a great time to find great sales on gardening equipment and supplies!

December Garden Care - Quick Guide

 Fall leaves make a great free mulch place leaves in areas that need protection from frost.

 Clean, sharpen, and oil garden tools.

 Winterize your garden.

 Keep watering. A hard freeze can be very damaging to dry roots.

 Keep weeding. Even though weeds aren’t actively growing this time of year, winter is the perfect time to do this tedious work without the struggle of the heat!

 Plant roses, deciduous trees, and bulbs.

 Sow wildflower seeds and crop covers.

 Keep an eye out for insects, nests, eggs, slugs and snails.

 Water trees, shrubs, lawn, 2-3 times this month.

 Prune fruit trees, grapes, shade trees. Prune cactus using BBQ tongs.

 Rebuild water basins around trees and shrubs.

 Reapply organic mulch to your water basin, do not use rock.

 Clean the yard; rake up leaves and apply to garden or orchard soil, cover with mulch.

 Sit down and plan you garden or landscape.

 Research bare-root fruit trees and ask your local garden center about their spring availability!

 Plant trees and shrubs, no water stress!

 Cut Russian Sage plants back to 6” and cut old growth off clump grasses.

 Make sure to drain and store hoses when not in use!

It is not too late to plant bulbs!  Bulbs are a staple in any garden. They are easy to care for throughout the winter months and will pop up with a delightful surprise of color in the spring, making all your winter garden planning well worth it! Some bulbs like the Rijnveld’s Early Sensation Daffodil, even bloom when there is still snow on the ground!

Check out our bulb selection at our retail nursery or in our online store for more!

Even if you aren’t planning on doing any planting this winter, your list of tasks to keep and prepare your garden for the growing season doesn’t run short!

About Amanda Melendrez

Hi there! I'm Amanda Melendrez and I am crazy about plants and soil health! I am the daughter of the world renowned Horticulturist and Soil Scientist and the owner of Trees That Please and Soil Secrets, Michael M. Melendrez. Learn how to grow anything, no matter where you live. The mission of this blog is to spread the joy and knowledge of home gardening, agriculture and innovative soil health solutions.