Have you made any New Year resolutions yet? Here’s some gardening ones you might like to ponder as you sit cosily indoors with a cuppa…

1. Get fresh! Put your wellies and a warm coat on and get out into your garden. Then stop. Fill your lungs with fresh air. Have a wander around; really notice what is happening – you may be surprised at the number of colours, shapes and even scents of winter plants. If you haven’t got a garden, try a winter walk in your local park. Or visit RHS Harlow Carr near Harrogate, where you’ll find a wonderful winter heather display, and specially-planted winter borders, to enjoy. You’ll come back feeling fresher and more positive.


2. Try a little (more!) retail therapy. When the weather is bad, put your feet up indoors and dream a little about the new plants you want to grow this year. Maybe flowers – but what about fruit or vegetables, or even trees? Then take action – do some online research, or leaf through the garden catalogues – and get them ordered. We’re all a bit short of cash at this time of year, but most seeds are only a couple of pounds and you can raise thirty, fifty or even more plants from one packet. And just think how satisfying it will be to cut your own lettuce from the garden rather than picking it up at the supermarket!

3. Wonder at wildlife. We all now realise the value of green spaces for the birds, animals and insects we share our planet with. Whether you have a balcony, a couple of pots or a bigger garden, there will be something you can do for wildlife in your area in 2014. What about putting up a bird feeder or bat box, making a miniature pond with an old tub or sink, or planting nectar-rich flowers to suit butterflies and insects?

4. Make life easier for yourself. Make 2014 the year you redesign your garden space so that it really suits your needs. Stop the long haul each week with the wheelie bin; install a proper seating area where you can sit in the sun; screen out the ugly house opposite; good garden design improves the functionality of your garden and generally makes life easier and your garden more enjoyable! Look online for advice – for example there’s a straightforward guide at Garden design / RHS Gardening. Or get in touch with us and let us offer you some inspiration for your Garden.