Well, I’m looking round my garden and the violets are safely tucked up in their
winter home, a bunch of cold frames and all along the benches in my greenhouses.
The pots have all been cleaned up; weeds removed as well as dead and
dying leaves, and the surface compost has been stirred to break it up.
With the cold days of winter fast closing in we now have to watch our
prized plants and give them a little cosseting. When there are dry mild days,
it is advisable to open up the lights on the frames and the vents on the greenhouses to
let some fresh air circulate and help prevent mildew and other serious conditions.
Remember though that at the end of the day you should make sure those vents are shut down
tight, and if frost or snow are forecast make sure you cover the frames with matting
or use bubbly plastic stuff which is great for insulation, even in the greenhouse.
All through the depths of winter our violets will need tending, so on those mild
days, do take the trouble to remove any dead or yellowing foliage and gently
stir the top soil and if necessary, give them a little water, but not too much,
and remember not to get water on the leaves.
There aren’t all that many pests around in the depths of winter, but it
pays to keep an eye open just in case. Remember, there will still be a load
of hungry critters around looking for food, and violets are real tasty to a raccoon,
squirrel or mouse.
I hope in future newsletters to talk to you about all the pests and so
forth that can cause problems for violet growers, and about some of the favorite
violets that we enjoy growing. Also, how to create a violet bed to provide
seedlings, and maybe get some new violets all of your own.