February may well be the toughest gardening month. Thank goodness it's short. Gardeners in warm climates don't know what kind of weather to expect from day to day or from day to night. Gardeners in cold climates have put the holidays behind them and just want to see the sun shine again.
But that doesn't stop the true gardener from working on his garden. February is for planning and for seeing the first signs that spring is around the corner.
And it is especially for pruning. So take advantage of those rare sunny days and get back in your garden.
Here are some regional tips for gardening in February. However since February weather is so unpredictable, you'll have to use some judgment.
- Finish up your catalog shopping and get your seed and plant orders in
- Keep an eye on houseplant pests
- Get your garden tools in order
Warmer Regions (Zone 8 and Higher)
- Watch out for cold snaps and be ready to protect tender plants
- Start to rejuvenate annual flower beds
- Keep watering, unless there are restrictions
- Propagate some new plants from cuttings
- Continue planting cool season vegetables like: broccoli, cabbage, kale, lettuce, onions
- Harvest winter crops before they bolt
- Plant out cold hard annuals like: pansies and Icelandic poppies
- Start seeds of warm season vegetables and flowers
- Begin dividing perennials
- Plant bare root roses and fruit trees
- Finish pruning roses and fruit trees
- Use dormant spray on roses and fruit trees and shrubs
- Plant regional bulbs like: amayllis, crinums and calla lilies
- Pot up saved tubers and corms like: begonias and cannas
- Weather permitting, you can start dividing perennials
Cold Regions (USDA Hardiness Zone 7 and Lower)
- Prune trees and shrubs, both ornamentals and fruit
- Check flower beds for plants that may have heaved
- Replace mulch as needed
- Check outside plants and trees for animal damage
- Cut some branches for forcing indoors
- Rejuvenate holly bushes with a hard pruning
- Check evergreens for sign of desiccation
- Start seeds of cool season vegetables and flowers