With fewer jobs to do in the garden itself, Winter is a good time to clean, tidy and organise your greenhouses and sheds. It may seem obvious, but putting the effort in now will maximise the light levels in your greenhouse, save you valuable time later on when you’re busier in the garden, and ensure that you set yourself up with an ordered working environment in preparation for the seasons ahead.
Below is our quick guide to tasks for your greenhouses and sheds…
Clean & tidy your greenhouse…
To properly clean and tidy your greenhouse, you’ll need…
- a broom
- a bucket
- glass cleaner
- long-handled sponge
- scouring sponge
Firstly, if you’re over-wintering tender plants, choose a mild spell so that you can move the plants outside (and cover them) or store them temporarily in a conservatory or porch. Then empty your greenhouse of all your pots etc, then brush down the framework and any shelving, and then sweep the floor.
Next you’ll need to clean your glass panels on both the inside and outside so fill your bucket with a solution of glass cleaner. Use your sponges to thoroughly wipe every pane so that you soak and scrub off the dirt. Then check your gutters if you have them, removing any leaves and debris and empty your water butt to clean out any dirt which has accumulated at the bottom.
Finally, wipe down your work surfaces with the scouring sponge, and then wash your pots and seeds trays with disinfectant before rinsing thoroughly.
Now you’re ready to return all of your pots and plants, taking the opportunity not to put back anything that’s broken or that you know you won’t use – and your greenhouse is ready for the year ahead!
Prepare to propagate…
Once your greenhouse is clean and tidy, it’s time to prepare for the growing year ahead by…
- checking your fruit, vegetable and flower seeds – maximise your chances of propagation by discarding any seeds which are out of date, and then make a shopping list of seeds you’ll need.
- checking seed trays, compost and pots – check that you have enough seed trays and compost to plant up your seeds, and then make sure you have enough pots for potting on.
- ensuring you have a lightweight aerating media such as vermiculite or perlite to mix with your compost to enable your seedlings to germinate more rapidly, and then use them as a mulch to retain moisture and maintain compost temperature .
Clean & tidy your shed…
It’s probably fair to say that sheds are often just somewhere to store your tools and gardening equipment, and sometimes they become a bit of a dumping ground too! But tidying doesn’t take long and can usually be achieved in just a few hours – and once you’re organised, you can bask in the glow of knowing that your tools are safely stored and that you’ll be able to find them easily when you need them!
First, if you have enough space then empty the shed completely, as this will also allow you to see if any maintenance needs to be carried out on the building itself. Next thoroughly sweep the floor and clean any work surfaces, and then clean the inside of the windows with warm, soapy water to remove any dirt or mould. Once your shed is clean, you can then set about organising the contents.
Then identify any broken power tools and other broken or unwanted items which can be recycled and put them to one side.
Next consider how often you use each item and think about where is best to store it – for example, you may want your mower by the door so that it’s easy to get to, and your tools fixed to the wall so that they are easy to reach. When you know how you want to organise your things, make sure you have adequate storage – now is a great time to add in new storage boxes, shelves or hanging hooks or pegs if you need them – and then you’re ready to refill your shed!
Remember, when you’re replacing your tools and equipment, take the opportunity to look over each item carefully, so that you can:
- remove any rust with a wire brush, and then wipe over with an oily rag (general purpose oil)
- carefully sharpen the blades of knives and secateurs using a sharpening stone
- oil wooden handles with boiled linseed oil to prevent drying out and splintering
- check the plugs and cables of power tools to ensure that they are in good order
- check the blades of your mower and if they are chipped or blunt, have them sharpened professionally
We have all the equipment you’ll need to make your greenhouses and sheds spick, span and organised for the seasons ahead in-store NOW – plus everything you’ll need to get your propagation off to a great start too!