February in the Garden

Please come visit us at The Natural Gardener for the most comprehensive advice, plants, and organic gardening supplies appropriate to our area and the current season.

SEEDS in season

VegetablesStart tomato & pepper seeds indoors!
Arugula Beets Carrots Endive Kale Kohlrabi Lettuce Mustard Greens Parsnips Peas (English, snow, & snap) Radishes Rutabaga Spinach Turnips Swiss Chard

Herbs – Start basil indoors!
Chives  Cilantro Dill Fennel Parsley

Alyssum Calendula Coreopsis Echinacea Nasturtium Sweet Peas

things to TRANSPLANT

Asparagus Leeks Lettuce Onion Sets Seed Potatoes Spinach Strawberries
Tomatoes (tomatoes are cold tender and must be protected!)

Apples Blackberries Blueberries Figs Grapes Olives Peaches Pears Pecans Persimmons Plums Pomegranates

Chives Cilantro Dill Fennel Lavender Lemon Balm Oregano Parsley Rosemary Sage Savory Sorrel Thyme

African Daisies Alyssum Calendula Bluebonnets Delphinium Dianthus Dusty Miller English Daisies Larkspur Poppies Snapdragons Stock

Blackfoot Daisy Four Nerve Daisy Echinacea Hymenoxys Ruellia Salvia Greggi Skeleton Leaf Golden Eye Turk’s Cap Yarrow Zexmenia

Winter is a great time to plant hardy evergreen and deciduous trees, as well as shrubs, groundcovers, and vines.

Continue to protect tender plants, especially new seedlings, before a freeze!

Soil Life

A good garden starts with good soil.  Early in the month, work 1-2″ of compost, an organic, solid high-nitrogen fertilizer, and a source of trace minerals to vegetable and flower beds so you’ll be ready when the planting fever hits.  For best results, mix the compost and trace minerals in about 6″ deep, then scratch the fertilizer into the top 2″ of the soil.  Whether your bed is new or established, give your plants a boost with beneficial mycorrhizal fungi, and inoculate your soil with a dose of our home-brewed aerobic compost tea.

Tastier Fruits & Veggies

Be sure to feed new and existing plants with your favorite organic fertilizer.  Leafy greens benefit from nitrogen, while flowering and fruiting plants need more phosphorus.

Prune immature fruit trees if needed.  Spray apples, peaches, pears, and plums with an all-natural fungicide when the buds begin to swell.  Also spray for plum curculio with dormant oil.  Rarely, if ever, do we recommend spraying pesticides or fungicides as a preventative measure except in the case of these non-native fruit trees.  Ask our Info Desk for more details.

More Birds, Bees, & Butterflies

Shear evergreen hedges and hardy herbs (oregano, rosemary, savory, thyme, etc.) to achieve a better shape and more blooms.  Cut woody perennials such as Esperanza and Firebush down to 12″ segments.  When new growth appears at the base, cut the old stems nearly to the ground to eliminate unsightly dead sticks.

Valentine’s Day means it’s time to prune roses! Sometime during the middle of February, shape your rosebushes and give them some TLC in the form of compost and a high-phosphorus fertilizer to promote blooms.

Conserve Our Water

Plants use water more slowly when temperatures are cool, so be careful not to overwater.  For plants that need supplemental water: always water deeply before freezes.  Dry plants are more likely to suffer freeze damage than well-watered ones.

We often wish we had a rain barrel when we’re finally getting rain in the middle of the hot summer.  Do your future self a favor and install one now so you can reap the benefits.