Maintenance in the winter quarters

Regularly check to see if potted plants in the winter quarters have been infested with pests. Spider mites can develop at temperatures from 5°C to 15°C and damage the plants. Effectively combat them with BugFree Bug and Larvae Killer+.

BugFree Bug and Larvae Killer+ also helps to keep scale insects and mealybugs at bay. Regularly remove fallen parts of the plant as these may contain plant diseases. Only give the plants a little water as they do not require as much in the wintertime. Air the winter quarters on warm days.

Feed the birds

You can watch lots of birds in winter from the comfort of your living room if you have a birdhouse. Only feed them the appropriate food if you really want to do them some good. Fresh fruit makes a suitable alternative to commercial dry food. Please remember only to fill the birdhouses when there is severe frost or heavy snow as birds are able to fend for themselves in mild weather and naturally eat pests in the garden. Birdhouses need to be cleaned on a regular basis to avoid infecting the birds.

Start thinking about balcony plants now

If you want to grow your own balcony plants, then start sowing seeds on the windowsill by the end of February. Suitable plants are busy Lizzies, geraniums, lobelia, snapdragons, petunias, semperflorens begonias, verbenas and many others. But remember as the plants can only be planted outside in May, you will need to have enough space on a bright windowsill. Use a peat-free soil specially designed for sowing and growing young plants and cuttings and for cultivating herbs.