Gardening Tasks for February

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Gardening Tasks for February

Tasks for the hottest month in the garden!

February is usually the hottest, driest month of the year – a hat and sunblock are a must before you head out into the garden and keep fluids up.

Houseplants

Most problems with houseplants are caused by overwatering or underwatering, so it’s vital to monitor the amount you provide. Misting the foliage, even a few times a day helps promote healthy plant growth. Check older houseplants to ensure they are not becoming "rootbound". If there are signs this is happening (roots appear through drainage holes or there is stunted growth etc), plan to re-pot in March when plant growth slows down.

Vegetable garden

This is the month when quite a few vegetable gardens are ‘abandoned’ until late March/April when preparation for the planting of a winter vegetable garden begins. However, with some care and attention, the vegetable garden should be prolific throughout February, producing quantities of eggplants, beans (climbers and dwarf), beetroot, courgettes, cucumbers, lettuce, sweetcorn, peppers, radishes, tomatoes, and pumpkins. Continue ‘topping up’ existing soil with fresh Daltons Garden Time Compost.

Flowering annuals

Continue to remove finished flowers (deadhead). Note which flowering annuals are most successful during the very hot, dry months as this is useful information for the next early summer plantings. Probably the most reliable summer annuals are alyssum, calendulas, nemesias, lobelia, pansies, petunias, salvias, portulacas, and zinnias. Marigolds, which are possibly the hardiest summer flowering annual are available in a wide range of colours and sizes.

Time for bulb shopping!  

Towards the end of the month garden centres begin stocking a wide range of bulbs including anemones, crocus, daffodils, freesias, hyacinth, iris, lachenalias, nerines, ranunculus, tulips, and watsonias. As most bulbs will be a permanent feature in your garden, consider carefully where to position them. Prepare planting sites thoroughly with Daltons Premium Bulb Mix, as many of the bulbs will not be disturbed for several years. Also add compost prior to planting to ensure the areas are well-drained.

Fruit tree harvesting

It’s harvest time for the last of the peaches and plums, and for the first apples and pears. At the same time, prune any excess growth as it may be stopping the sun reaching ripening fruit and/or reducing air movement through the fruiting trees. Water deeply and mulch trees planted last winter to encourage vigorous growth over the last months of summer.

Rose care

The last of the difficult months for rose growers, February care involves regular deadheading, removing any dead wood from plants and fallen leaves and petals from the ground. This helps to minimise the occurrence of black spot and rust. Observe which varieties do best in your garden and in local gardens - this helps when selecting new roses for your garden.

Lawns

February is essentially a holding exercise when it comes to lawns. Invariably the driest month of the year unless you can irrigate regularly, lawns will suffer. However, in the months ahead the grass will recover. Do not apply lawn fertiliser until the temperatures drop and rainfall returns.

Harvesting herbs

It’s time to harvest and dry herbs if you want your own home-grown dried herbs to cook with. Once dry, ensure they are stored in a container that is free of moisture. Remove flowers from basil, thyme, and chives as they impact the flavour of the herbs.

Newly planted trees and shrubs

For new specimens that were planted last winter, mulch over the dry summer months to help with water retention. Water regularly and deeply to encourage a strong root system.

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