Garden jobs for February

Garden jobs for February

Making plans for your garden now and having a small garden tidy up on clear days can make all the difference for the planting season ahead.

Spending a cold or wet February in the garden may not seem like the most thrilling idea. Especially for those of us who spend the winter hibernating in warm jumpers whilst waiting for the growing season to come around again. It's still not really gardening season yet, but spring is just around the corner and it's time to start getting your garden ready.

The coldest month is already behind you, but there is still a big chance you'll get some frost before the year becomes warmer so be careful not to start planting too early. Be sure to check typical frost dates for your area so that you're not caught out.

It's a good time to think about what types of plants you want to see and the kinds of colours and varieties that you want to grow. It's also your last chance to plan any landscaping changes before all the green starts to grow back.
Garden planting displays for spring

Garden planting displays for spring

Start planning your garden and the planting you want to do now. You can create all sorts of great displays with spring varieties, particularly with container planting recipes.

Pick colours that you like, choosing similar shades together such as yellows and oranges for bursts of complementing colours throughout the garden.

If you like the sound of something more dramatic choose contrasting varieties in romantic reds and whites, or cool blues and pinks.

Feed the birds

Natural foods such as seeds are still scarce at this time of year. Don't forget to put out what you can to help any birds in your area make it through the winter. If it's a frosty day put out some fresh water so that animals have a source to drink from.

How to do a garden tidy up in February

February is the last time to prepare your garden before all the lush green grows back. To help get your garden ready for the year try these garden tips.

Remove leaves from plant beds and containers. If you don't they can start to rot and may cause disease. If you have a compost heap you can add what you collect.

Perennial plants, the ones that tend to die back over winter unlike evergreens, (which, not surprisingly, stay green all year) may leave branches and seed heads behind.

Many people leave them without trimming them back to help wildlife find protection from the elements in the winter . The seeds can also be a source of food.

If you have left them, now is the time to cut them back as this will help improve their appearance and flowering. Cut down any remaining growth on perennials as close to the base as possible. If you grow any Fuchsias, such as ShadowDancers, wait until the very end of February, then trim them down and place in a sheltered spot. This will encourage new growth.

Keep an eye out for weeds and deal with them as soon as possible. Leaving weeds, even in colder months, means they can spread their seeds. If the weather is mild you may see weeds like nettles coming through. It's a good idea to remove them whilst they are still small.

If you have any cleaning up left to do such as tidying and cleaning greenhouses and sheds, make sure you do this before things start to grow. Having a deep clean can help prevent pests and diseases spreading into the new gardening season.

If we get a warm February, you could need to mow the lawn already. Just make sure it's dry when you do. Try not to cut it back too short just yet by using the highest setting on your lawnmower.

Mulching involves covering your soil in some sort of organic material such as bark chippings and compost. It can help give your plants more nutrients, hold in moisture, insulate and protect against weeds. Normally mulching is left until slightly later in the spring but you may need to work in a bit of mulch around plants that are already starting to come through the top of the soil. Composted leaves from the autumn are good for this. Try not to do this on wet days or when the ground is frozen.

Ideas box
Plant a warm and textured autumn container with this recipe.

Plant a warm and textured autumn container with this recipe.

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