New year, new garden! January is the most opportune time to prepare your garden for the year.
Planting in January can help you achieve the early spring garden goals.
It’s the perfect month to start the cool season plants.
There is a long list of green vegetables, landscape shrubs, cold-resistant annuals, and slow germinating perennials to grow in January.
I’m sharing my top picks in this article for a flourishing winter and spring garden.
- 1 What to Plant in January?
- 2 Best Houseplants to Grow in Cold Weather
- 2.1 Vegetables for January Planting
- 2.2 Flowers for January Planting
- 2.3 Fruits for January Planting
- 2.4 Bulbs for January Planting
- 3 Key Facts about Gardening in January
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions About What To Plant In January
What to Plant in January?
Start your January garden with edible plants like beans, carrots, spinach, potatoes, cabbage, peas, and herbs. You can also plant Hellebore, amaryllis, daffodils, pansies, and violas to bring joy and color to your winter garden. In terms of fruits, berries, pears, and apples are the most common fruit for January.
Best Houseplants to Grow in Cold Weather
Vegetables for January Planting
Beans are one of the simplest crops to grow for new gardeners.
Plant your beans indoors anytime in January so that they are strong enough to be move outside once the weather starts changing.
One precaution about growing beans early is that they should be sown in biodegradable containers. This way, you won’t disturb the root system while transplanting them.
Even in January, you have to give them bright light for best growth.
Make sure the soil medium is acidic and filled with organic matter.
If you want to enjoy juicy carrots that are jammed pack with flavor, sow them in the first month of the year. They can be planted in the middle or end of the month.
Make sure you provide loose sandy soil and adequate cold temperature for them.
Mulching is also great for these root vegetables as it will increase the rate of germination, lock the moisture in the soil and protect the roots from sun damage.
This Persian vegetable is rich in nutrients and tops the list of healthy green vegetables.
This simple leafy vegetable can add greenery to your gloomy winter garden.
This cool-weather lover also needs fertile soil and good sunlight for fast seedling growth.
Irish potatoes planted in mid or late January will be ready for harvest in spring. They like to be planted deep in the soil (about 8-10 inches).
Mulching plays an important role in the growth of winter planted potatoes.
As the mulch decays due to rain or snow, it starts generating heat in the soil which triggers root growth for Irish Potatoes.
If you grow asparagus regularly, you know that it’s the first vegetable in your spring garden. This plant loves growing in cooler regions that experience long winters.
The asparagus is not only a beautiful plant but also rich in vitamins and iron.
Beets are a famous winter crop in areas with mild winters.
This biennial vegetable can overwinter once the root clump has developed.
Make sure to keep the temperature at the 50-degree Fahrenheit mark.
Peas need cool weather to reach maturity, which makes them an ideal candidate in the January plants list.
You should try growing the frost-hardy pea varieties for better chances of success with January planting.
They need lots of sun and well-draining soil for optimum growth.
The most popular varieties for home gardening are snow peas, sweet peas, and snap peas.
One simple trick to hasten the germination process is to soak the pea seeds before planting.
If you want to eat the most delicious homegrown cabbage, start it in the early months of the year. Winter grown cabbage has excellent taste and becomes cold or frost tolerant.
There are several late-season varieties available in the market that are sold as Winter Cabbage.
However, the top requirement for this leafy vegetable is full sun for six hours.
They require less moisture compared to summer plants; therefore, overwatering can result in split heads.
Winter is the perfect season to create a windowsill herb garden. Several herb varieties thrive in January if you manage to provide enough sunlight for it.
Flowers for January Planting
These colorful rose-like flowers are cold-resistant, so they are my top choice in the category of January flowers.
The blooms can be enjoyed in both spring and winter. I would recommend planting different varieties together for multicolored blooms.
Just remember that this plant needs adequate sunlight to start flowering.
Pansies and Violas
If given the right care, these winter hardy flowers can repeatedly bloom for the whole season.
As a cool-season plant, they are known to thrive in chilly weather, so they are a safe choice for January plantation.
With their bright yellow flowers, Daffodils are a must-have for dull winter months. They can give you warm, spring vibes on any cold day.
You can either start them before frost arrives or force the bulbs to bloom indoors by planting in January.
The cold winter temperature allows the plant to start early blooming.
Once the right temperature is maintained, they will start blooming within 5-8 weeks of planting.
You can use the forcing bulbs technique to start them early in the year. Those planted in early or mid-January will start blooming in February.
Begonia is a statement flower with fluffy petals.
Although the flowering season is from July to October, you can sow them in January for early blooming.
The seeds for this flowering plant germinate quite slowly, taking about 15 to 60 days.
But you can help it germinate faster by providing light (using grow lights) and maintaining temperature between 66 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit (19 to 24 degrees Celsius).
Fruits for January Planting
Everybody loves homegrown raspberries and blueberries. So why not start them early in the year as bare roots and enjoy more fruit throughout the year.
The blueberries planted outdoors can tolerate frost but remember, a frost-free period of 140 days is required to produce the fruit.
Pears need a cold spell to start flowering and fruiting. It’s one of the highly recommended winter fruits as it can survive in USDA hardiness zone 3 to 8.
Although it can handle the cold January weather well, you still need to provide full sun and well-draining soil.
Honeycrisp apples can survive in USDA hardiness zones 3-6.
They produce pink, red, or off-white colored fruit, but they require direct sunlight for maximum fruit yield.
Bulbs for January Planting
Tulip bulbs can be successfully planted in January if the soil has not frozen. These bulbs prefer being exposed to a cool period for flowering.
I prefer growing Tulips indoors by burying them in a well-draining, all-purpose potting mixture.
The ideal temperature for these bulbs is between 25 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit (-3 to 7 degrees Celsius).
You have to maintain this temperature for a period of 6 to 10 weeks to help the Tulips start blooming.
To have early blooms, you can start the Lily bulbs in January.
But you need to provide full sun to help the plant produce magnificent flowers.
Key Facts about Gardening in January
- To protect your January plants from frost or cold temperatures, cover them with plastic wrap or cloth during the night.
- If you are wondering what is the most important thing for a successful winter garden is, it’s watering. Because even in winter, your plants will thrive only in moist soil.
- If you live in an extremely cold area, you can start the plants indoors or in a greenhouse and transplant them to the outdoor garden once spring arrives.
- January suits most cool-season vegetables because, unlike tropical plants, cold temperature is helpful for them as it encourages blooming.
- Most plants, vegetables, or fruits planted in January are ready for harvest in early spring. This means you can enjoy your favorite edible plants before any insects start feeding on them since the majority of pests attack the plants in spring.
- Certain flowers need a minimum temperature to start blooming. If this condition is not met, your plant will develop leaves but no flowers.
- Always use clean pots and seedling trays; otherwise, your seeds might fail to germinate. I always recommend cleaning the gardening tools with a soap solution to kill any bacteria or fungus that might be present.
- Before planting anything indoors in January, consider the light levels within your house. If you do not have adequate natural sunlight, buy some artificial or fluorescent lights to help, the plants survive the cold months.
Frequently Asked Questions About What To Plant In January
Can I sow the January plants directly in the outdoor garden soil?
If the weather permits and there is no risk of frost damage in your area, you can definitely start the January plants in the outdoor garden. But if it’s still too cold, sow the seeds inside and transfer them to the garden when the weather is slightly warmer.
How can I ensure a warm temperature for my seeds or seedlings in January?
You can buy heat mats to provide warmth to the seeds and baby plants. Maintaining the right temperature for the seeds is important because it helps in germination.
Marcel runs the place around here. He has a deep passion for houseplants & gardening and is constantly on the lookout for yet another special plant to add to his arsenal of houseplants, succulents & cacti.
Marcel is also the founder of Iseli International Commerce, a sole proprietorship company that publishes a variety of websites and online magazines.