For a beautiful garden come spring and summer, preparation is key. Frost and snow may not make your garden the most welcome of places but the promise of Spring and the return of warmer days gives you plenty to be doing. This is also a time of year where our wildlife relies most heavily on the food we supply as natural reserves would have run dry by now so you should give all the help you can t see your local wildlife thrive. Read below for some key February garden jobs.
Check garden equipment – this is a prime opportunity to check over your garden equipment. Does any of it need fixing or replacing? Every gardener should have at least a good quality spade and a few handheld tools such as a trowel to tackle various projects.
Feed wildlife – this time of year, at the very end of winter, natural food sources will be at there most depleted. This is a difficult time for many birds and mammals so putting food out can really help wildlife through to spring.
Apply organic fertilisers – a slow release of nutrients is perfect for moving between winter and the warmer days to come. Applying a good quality organic fertiliser around plants in February will help retain moisture and add nutrition for better growth come spring.
Plant bare-root – the dormant season of trees runs from around November to march so bare roots can be planted at any point in this period. Bear in mind that the further into this period you plant the less time the plant has to develop strong roots before its efforts go into the growth above the soil.
Prune overgrown hedges – Now is an excellent time to heavily prune your overgrown hedges. This will keep them healthy and help maintain a more pleasing shape.
Plant Dahlia tubers – Dahlias bring some excitement to February gardening with their beautiful variety. Start planting Dahlias that can provide good cuttings to be potted up come summer. Place them in a tray of soil in good light and spray occasionally with water to encourage the buds to grow.
Snowdrops – a quintessential symbol of springs arrival, snowdrops can be planted now to bloom in their beautiful white bells in early spring
Plant shallots – the perfect time to plant shallots in preparation for spring and summer. Plant in rows with plenty of organic fertilizer.
Sow peas – peas can be sown in a piece of plastic guttering with drainage holes drilled into the base. Keeping them warm will assist germination. Once they begin to sprout they can be transferred to a trench in your garden and covered with a cloche for protection from frost.
Mulch fruit trees – this is a great way to prevent weeds from sprouting around your trees and also to retain moisture in the roots of the tree. This will help cut down the amount of watering you’ll need to give the tree come summer.
Heat your greenhouse – there’s still plenty of time for frost and snow so a keyFebruary gardening job would be to keep your greenhouse heated with an electric or gas heater will help maintain a steady temperature.
Start a citrus tree – with a greenhouse heater providing the warmth you could start your own lemon tree. Cut open a lemon and remove the seeds, plant several of these in a pot about a 1cm deep, place in a warm spot and water well. Once seedlings begin to emerge pot them up and keep them warm.
Grow peppers – you can also take advantage of the steady warm temperature in a greenhouse to grow your own peppers. These can be transplanted outside when warm weather returns or kept inside the greenhouse.
Feed birds – this is a difficult time of year for birds when natural sources fo food are depleted. Help out the birds in your garden by providing a variety of foods or putting out food that’s specific to the diet for the birds you see.
Food for squirrels – squirrels will be having their first litters of kits. Parents will need more food to help sustain them as they wean their babies until 6 weeks when the baby can move onto solid foods.
Prep for a wildflower meadow – now is a great time to prepare your soil for some wildflower planting. Break down large clumps of soil, rake over and cover with mulch.
Install a pond – a garden pond is one of the best ways to help garden wildlife and now is an excellent time to start a pond. You may get the years first frog spawn and you can support toads coming out of hibernation.
Scott is a copywriter currently making content for the Primrose site and blog. When at his desk he’s thinking of new ways to describe a garden bench. Away from his desk he’s either looking at photos of dogs or worrying about the environment. He does nothing else, just those two things.