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Your winter planting calendar | Great British Food Magazine


Your winter planting calendar

It may be freezing right now, but spring is just around the corner, so get your kitchen garden ready with our handy planting calendar from the experts at Dobies garden centres


This is the time when your garden will likely experience some of the harshest weather of the year. While the first signs of spring may peek through, frost and snow are still likely in February, so vulnerable plants will still need protecting. A gardener’s patience will be rewarded in the months to come.


*Plant bare-root trees and bushes, as long as the soil isn’t frozen.

*Use a mild area of the garden to sow broad beans.

*Start sowing seeds indoors for early crops — cabbage, cauliflowers, lettuce, salad onions, spinach and turnip are all great for this.

*Use a heated propagator to sow onion seeds.

*Prune all of the following:


Autumn raspberries






*Harvest any citrus fruits, as long as they are mature.

*Lift rhubarb crowns up using compost and transfer them to a cool greenhouse.

*Plant garlic cloves in pots.

*Plant fruit trees, bushes, canes and vines, as long as the soil isn’t frozen.

*Chit potato tubers, with the plan to plant them out around six weeks after.

*Sow cucumber and tomato seeds from the middle of the month, ready for them to start growing in a greenhouse.

*Plant out garlic and shallots but only in light soils at the moment.

*Early beetroot, broad beans, bulb onions, carrots, lettuce, parsnips, peas, spinach and summer cabbages can be sowed outside under cloches this month, if you have light soil and live in a mild area of the UK.

*Plant Jerusalem artichoke tubers.

*Use a garden fleece to cover strawberry plant so to encourage early fruiting.

*Plant summer-fruiting raspberries.

*Harvest Brussels sprouts, leeks and sprouting broccoli.



The beginning of spring also represents the start of sowing in your garden. Just be aware of the unpredictable British weather — everything should be covered in fleece if you hear severe weather forecasts, to prevent your early spring work being undone.

Checklist for growing your own in March:

*Plant bare-root fruit trees — it’s the last chance to do so in the calendar year.

*Prune any hardy fruit trees present in your garden.

*If you want to have a fruit garden, plant cranberries, lingonberries and cold-stored strawberry runners. Seeds of alpine strawberries should also be sowed.

*When it comes to growing vegetables, plant asparagus crowns, garlic sets, Jerusalem artichoke tubers, onions and shallots.

*Chit any early and maincrop potatoes.

*Outdoors, all of the following seeds should be sowed but only in mild areas of the garden that have light soil:


Broad beans


Kohl rabi







Salad leaves


Summer cabbage

Summer cauliflower

Swiss chard


*Indoors, all of the following seeds should be sowed:




Globe artichokes


Sweet peppers


*If you’re growing cherries, cooking apples, pears and plums, you should apply a standard nitrogen feed. A high nitrogen feed is recommended for blackcurrants.

*All citrus trees should have a summer feed applied.

*Feed any crops that have been standing in your garden throughout the winter months.

For more ideas and advice visit