GARDEN TIME with DOUG – February Gardening Checklist
FEBRUARY IS ONE MONTH CLOSER TO SPRING – YEAH!!
Now that January has passed we are getting closer to spring. The first day of Spring is Wednesday, March 20, which is only 48 days away. I have no real complaints about winter so far this year. We have had a more traditional winter with our highs and lows being closer to normal. Let’s hope this trend continues. February can be a transitional month from being cold and dreary to having warmer days that we see some shrubs, trees, and perennials beginning to come out of dormancy.
Because spring is here in less than 50 days, there are a few gardening chores that should be done during the month of February:
- If you haven’t done so already, now is the time to cut back your liriope “monkey grass” to the ground.
- Toward the end of February, in Central Virginia, be sure to apply a crabgrass pre-emergence to your lawn. This pre-emergence will keep crabgrass seed from germinating and growing.
- Don’t forget to pinch back and feed your winter pansies in February. By doing so, you will encourage branching and more bud formation which will lead to more beautiful flowers as we get into March and April.
- It is now time to cut back your ornamental grasses. Yes, I encourage waiting until now because of the winter interest they provide. But, it’s time to get ornamental grasses ready for the upcoming growing season. And, this is a good time to feed them.
- February can be viewed as a pruning month. Now is the time to trim back roses and fruit trees.
- Don’t forget the birds. Don’t stop feeding our feathered friends. They are dependent on our providing food for them in February.
- February is a good month to repair and paint window boxes, lawn furniture, and other items in preparation for outdoor gardening and recreational use.
- Now is a good time to make labels for your spring garden. One label trend is to use broken clay shards with permanent ink marker to write on them. Clay shards give a very natural , unique look to markers sitting in your garden.
- Let’s be sure to get outside on the warm, sunny days in February. Things in the garden and landscape are beginning to change. Spring bulbs are beginning to pop through the ground. Birds are more active.
- If you like to grow your own vegetables from seed, February is a good month to start your cole crop vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, collards, kale, cabbage, etc. because they love to grow in the ground in March when our soil temperature is still cool and the air temperature is still cool.
LET’S MAKE 2019 A HEALTHY NEW YEAR!!!!
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