Frosty mornings and even a little bit of snow signify that winter is on its way.

December is a quiet month for gardening. There are still tasks to accomplish for the upcoming planting and growing season, though.

Indoor gardening

Growing plants indoors is a viable option this time of year. You can start an indoor vegetable garden, an indoor herb garden or both.

potted plants on windowsillThere are a number of herbs that thrive indoors, like chives, basil, parsley and mint. As long as you have a sunny location or the right artificial light, plus containers with drainage holes and the right potting medium, your indoor herb garden should be a success. Check out our how-to article to learn more about starting your indoor herb garden.

Related: November’s gardening to-do list

January’s gardening to-do list

More information about growing vegetables indoors over winter, such as fertilizer options and controlling pests, can be found here. Farm and Dairy online columnist Ivory Harlow also gives us two superfoods — microgreens and sprouts — that can be grown indoors during cold weather. They’re easy to grow and they’re nutritious.

Tend to houseplants

The plants that need to be taken care of during the winter, aside from vegetables and herbs grown indoors, are houseplants. Check out our tips for taking care of houseplants during the winter.

The indoor climate can be tricky for plants with dry conditions, cooler temperatures and less daylight than the summer months, but there are ways to keep houseplants healthy until spring arrives.

Poinsettia care

poinsettiaWith the upcoming Christmas holiday, garden centers are stocked with the infamous poinsettia. Poinsettias shouldn’t be placed too closely to windows or places where there will be cold breezes, and they shouldn’t be too close to heat vents. More poinsettia care tips, like watering, potting and dealing with pests can be found here.

Choosing seeds

Call it armchair gardening. Call it getting ahead on your to-do list. December is a great time to order seed catalogs and take a look at what you want to grow in the spring and summer.

Online columnist Ivory Harlow shares her tips for choosing heirloom or hybrid seeds, as well as tips for place, space and avoiding waste. You’ll be able to figure out just how much of a plant you want to grow, where it should be grown and when you should plant.

Clean tools

garden trowelIf you didn’t clean up your gardening tools and put them away at the end of summer, do it now. You’ll want to start fresh in the spring with tools that are free of dirt and plant matter and tools that are sharp and ready for use. Check out our guide to preparing garden tools for winter for tips. If you’re thinking ahead a few months, take a look at our guide to getting tools organized for spring.

Have any other gardening tips for December, or any questions? Let us know in the comments below.



We are glad you have chosen to leave a comment. Please keep in mind that comments are moderated according to our comment policy.

Receive emails as this discussion progresses.