Garden Update – December

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Plants in Flower Witch Hazel Indoors: Amaryllis, Cyclamen, Poinsettia Plants with Colorful Berries American Beautyberry, Burford Holly, Chinese Holly, Foster Holly, Nellie R. Stevens Holly, Nandina, Pyracantha, and Washington Hawthorn.


What to Fertilize

  • None needed on plants outside.
  • Use wood ashes on your vegetable garden, bulb beds, and lightly on your lawns if soil pH is below 6.0.
  • Fertilize house plants as needed.

What to Plant

  • After Christmas, plant live Christmas trees in the landscape.
  • Keep these trees indoors no more than 14 days.
  • Consider using LED lights to reduce heat on the tree.

What to Prune

  • Prune berry-producing plants if berries are desired in table arrangements over the holidays.
  • Remove “weed” or undesirable trees from your landscape.

Pest Outlook None

Lawn Care Keep tree leaves from collecting on your lawn.


  • Take leaf cuttings of your favorite house plants like African violets and begonia.
  • Hardwood cuttings of your landscape plants like forsythia (yellow bells), flowering quince, weigela, holly, and hydrangea can be taken this month.

Specific Chores

  • Put pine needles or wheat/barley straw over your strawberry plants.
  • Keep your living Christmas tree outside until you are ready to decorate.
  • White pine and Norway Spruce are living trees that will do well in much of North Carolina.
  • Make a list of needed repairs on garden tools and equipment.
  • Repair or have them repaired after the holidays.
  • Shop around for garden products for your favorite gardener.
  • Keep your cut Christmas tree in water throughout the holiday season.
  • Order fruit trees and grapevines for February or March planting, if not already done.
  • Visit the N.C. Cooperative Extension, Henderson County Center for information on the holiday house plants like poinsettia and amaryllis.