Typically February is the coldest month of the year. However, this year in the UK has been totally opposite of the norm. With temperatures bouncing between -4 and 12 degrees C, we don’t know where we are as far as gardening.
We have seen spring bulbs coming up in December, so even the plants are confused this year. But after the wet winter, there is still plenty to do outside in the garden. Time to get that digging done that you were unable to do with the ground was soaked.
It is a perfect time to repair any damage recent storms may have caused. Seed sowing can start in earnest which is what we have all been waiting for. Those little seeds are the promise of better things to come, but if you don’t sow now you can’t reap later.
When you get in from the garden, settle down and relax with a cuppa and Check out some of my YouTube videos to get you ready for the best season of your life.
Jobs To Do Now
Cut Clematis down to size
If you haven’t done so already, This will be one of the last chances you have to prune your Clematis. By next month buds will start to form and it will be too late to prune at that point. If you do not prune, Clematis can turn into a mass of tangled stems and look unsightly, It could also create too much weight for its support.
Do not step on spring bulbs
While you are working, It is very easy to forget there are bulbs under your feet. Check where you are walking so you do not tread on them while performing tasks around the garden. These should be popping their little fragile heads through the surface around now. A large foot will not help them.
Cut back dogwood
Dogwood is very easy to grow and gives us colour and structure through winter. Once it is established we should prune it back hard. Cut all the stems down to about 6 inches above ground level, just after where the plant begins to branch out at the base.
Once you have pruned, It is a good idea to mulch these plants. This will help to retain moisture and stop weeds growing that are taking advantage of the sunlight that is able to hit the soil surface now the dogwood is only 6 inches high.
Cut down faded grass
Grasses fall into two groups, evergreen and deciduous. Deciduous require to be cut back between January and March just as the new shoots are starting to appear like your lawn.
Deciduous grasses do not die when you cut them back, In fact, it can make the plants much healthier. If grasses shoots are starting to form, Just cut back the old growth to just above the new growth that is coming through.
Sow chillies, pepper, tomatoes, parsnip carrots
These plants species can take a long time to mature. Starting them now will ensure you have good sturdy plants right when you need them. Once the last frost has passed you can plant them out into their final spaces.
Finish cleaning seed trays and pots
This is a laborious task in the garden. It is often overlooked by a lot of gardeners. However, It is quite an important task as you are not only cleaning the pots so they look good. You are killing off damaging bacteria, fungus and other pathogens that will attack young seedling.
Forced or split Rhubarb
For early sweet-tasting Rhubarb, now is the time to force it. Simply cover the crowns with an upturned dustbin or large container of some sort. You will get pale stalks around 20-30cm that are perfect for cooking with early in the season
Take root cuttings
To increase your stocks of herbaceous perennials then taking root cuttings is an excellent and viable method. Now is the time to get this task completed. It saves you time and money, but also the new plants are stronger as they are already acclimatised to their environment.
Sow lettuce brassicas
Early Feb is perfect for sowing these crops. They prefer cold weather and can actually take freezing. Lettuce will be one of the first salad crops you can harvest If you’re not growing it throughout winter that is. ANd brassicas take a long time to establish. So get these sown now.
Pot up plug plants
Plug plants, or seed starts, whichever you decide to call them should be potted up as soon as they are ready. Whether you are growing your own from seed, or the seed companies are shipping them out it is important to get them into larger pots to develop good strong root systems.
Plant bare-root roses
This month will be the last chance you have to plant bare-root roses. These typically arrive via mail order. It is important to get them into the ground before they start budding. While the soil is moist, these plants will quickly establish a good strong root system and provide you with blooms for years to come.
Here is a list of more gardening jobs to do in February
- Keep off the frosty grass
- Place nest boxes for birds
- Clear away old climbers
- Look after your tools
- Check tree stakes for all your trees
- Get your cloche’s ready
- Prune fruit canes
- Feed trees with high potash fertiliser
- Chit your seed potatoes
- Make a hedgehog haven
- Prepare your greenhouse
- Set up lights for indoor growing
- Sow Leeks
- Mulch beds with manure
So many folks have asked about greenhouse heating. I have a complete blog on that and you can view it here. One of the biggest questions I receive is about heating them cheaply, or just heating a smaller space. Check out the video below where we show you how to build a 100-hour candle. These can be used to heat small space or additional candles used for larger greenhouses.
As you can see, there is lots to be doing in February. There is no need to be sat in the house wishing to be in the garden, and thinking there is nothing to do. I hope you got some value from this blog post. If you did, please consider subscribing to the blog so you don’t miss future posts. You can do this in the right-hand sidebar.