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December Gardening Chores
Red Bluff, North Sacramento Valley, California, USA
USDA Zone 9
December: Quotes, Poetry, Sayings, Lore
Yule and Winter Solstice Celebrations: Quotes, Poetry, Sayings, Lore
Pruning leafless trees and shrubs.
Adding compost and fertilizer to the vegetable and flower gardens.
Planting bare root trees and shrubs.
Pruning back grape vines.
Cleaning, sharpening, and storing tools.
Start taking cuttings from dormant vines and shrubs.
Reading seed and gardening catalogs.
Digging trenches for underground plastic pipe.
Making sure drainage systems are working.
Pruning evergreens for shape.
Moving tender potted plants to protected areas.
Burning large piles of cuttings and weeds.
Protect tender plants (e.g., citrus) from frosts.
Protect valuable garden tools and equipment from the rain and fog.
Tending winter vegetables: cabbage, lettuce, peas, spinach, brocoli, etc.
Putting some bulbs in the ground.
Plant onion and garlic sets.
Watering potted plants as needed if rain is insufficient.
Pruning back flowering plants, like mums.
Prepare new strawberry and berry vine beds.
Spraying some fruit trees (e.g., peaches) to prevent leaf curl.
Dividing dormant herbs.
Raking and composting leaves.
Setting out some color plants, e.g., calendulas.
Removing dead or dying branches or trees to burn pile.
"How like a winter hath my absence been
From thee, the pleasure of the fleeting year!
What freezings have I felt, what dark days seen!
What old December’s bareness every where!
And yet this time remov’d was summer’s time;
The teeming autumn, big with rich increase,
Bearing the wanton burden of the prime,
Like widow’d wombs after their lords’ decease:
Yet this abundant issue seem’d to me
But hope of orphans and unfather’d fruit;
For summer and his pleasures wait on thee,
And, thou away, the very birds are mute:
Or, if they sing, ’tis with so dull a cheer,
That leaves look pale, dreading the winter’s near."
- William Shakespeare, How Like a Winter Hath my Absence Been (Sonnet 97)