Continue to deadhead winter-flowering pansies and other winter bedding. Pansies will carry on into the spring and even to early summer, if attended to frequently.
Improve soil by spreading compost or manure over beds and forking in.
Dig deeply areas where you’ll be planting new roses, shrubs or perennials.
Check whether containers need watering. Even at this time of year, they can dry out. Pots that are sheltered by eaves or balconies can miss out on any rainfall. If in doubt, check the compost at a hand’s depth to see if it feels dry. Aim to keep pots moist, but not wet.
Spread a thick mulch of bark over the crown of tender plants, such as fuchsias, dahlias and cannas.
Prune summer-flowering clematis, cutting stems back to emerging buds close to soil level.
If snow falls, knock it off the branches of evergreen shrubs and conifers to prevent branches breaking under its weight.
Consider purchasing water butts (available in many sizes here at Poplar) now ready for the summer. Rainwater is particularly useful for watering acid-loving, ericaceous plants (tap water is often slightly alkaline).