I am always thinking about my gardens—the ones I have and the ones I am going to have. Any day that is not too bitterly cold or windy will find me near my gardens, notebook and camera in hand. I will pick up fallen leaves from the crabapple to add to the yard waste bag standing at the ready in the garage, reminding me that soon real gardening will be possible. I will cut back the irises and daylilies that I didn’t get to last fall and tend any other plants that would benefit from some tidying up.

I will look for signs of chewing on my roses and shrubs and spray with a repellent wherever it is suspected. There is a plethora of sprays on the market, but a homemade recipe is to mix a bottle of hot sauce in a gallon of water with a squeeze of dish soap (I keep a bottle of one without dyes or perfume handy to use on plants) to help it stick to the plants. If I notice any broken branches on my roses, shrubs or trees, I will remove them—or have Kent or Matt help me.

Winter also is a good time to take a good, long look at our trees and decide if it’s time to call a certified arborist to prune them. I will look for spaces where something new could be planted and refer to previous notes in my garden journal to help me start a plant list so I will be ready to shop when spring comes.

But mostly, January is a good time to curl up under a blanket and peruse the gardening catalogs or books and dream of the most beautiful gardens that are sure to come.

Thanks to all who attended our Cup of Cheer™ House Walk, Holiday Market and Tea in December. Your support makes it possible for the Naperville Garden Club to provide scholarships to local students (seven students received financial assistance for the 2018-19 school year), to provide plants and trees to the Naperville community and to encourage amateur gardeners. Thank you!

Remember that next year the Holiday Market and Tea will be at the Judd Kendall VFW Post on West Jackson Avenue where there’s plenty of parking.