What to do in a Texas January Garden is “iffy” business. . . if we’ve had a hard freeze already, if we’ve had a dry winter so far, or if the warm weather has been stubbornly persistent.

1. Apply mulch over the roots and crowns of perennials to prevent cold damage.

2. Generally watering is unnecessary because of cool rainy weather and the doormant nature of perennials. However, be sure to water your vegetable beds if growing greens and other cold hearty veggies.

3. Cut back and remove old, dead upper portions of dormant perennials. Keep a few heads that have seed pods like your daisies and blackeyed suzans. Your birds will be grateful. Chop up the discarded material for your compost pile. Some perennials don’t go dormant until the first freeze hits.

4. Bring in patio plants for the winter, or cut back, mulch, and cover with blankets on the nights that temperatures drop below freezing.

Did you forget to winterize your garden?

All alone in an enchanted land

Where before me grandly stands

Crystal walls and glistening strands

In nature’s winter garden.

This secret beauty I have found

When morning sun came streaming down

A golden glow like a celestial crown

In nature’s winter garden.

John Porter

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