Gardening Jobs for February

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Redmink's picture
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Joined: 2009-08-07

Here's some good tips from TOFA ... there's always something to do!

Re-invigorate your houseplants by removing the top 1/4 inch of soil and top-dressing with fresh potting soil.

Spider mites are apt to thrive in warm, dry houses. Frequent misting under the leaves of houseplants will discourage them. A solution of 1 cup flour, 1/4 cup buttermilk, and a gallon of cool water, applied in a mist, is a good organic deterrent.

Houseplants will be sensitive to overfeeding at this time of year. Provide lots of sunlight, fresh air, and frequent bathing for plants that seem a little worse for the winter.

Forced paper-white narcissus will bloom more quickly now than earlier in the season.

Shop early for seeds from catalogs and garden stores. The early shopper gets the best choice of seed varieties.

Want colorful salads this summer? Order seeds now for red iceberg lettuce, ruby Swiss chard, and purple pod beans.

Plan some window boxes. Good choices for plants: zinnias, nasturtiums petunias, geraniums, begonia. Edible choices: cherry tomatoes, lettuce, kale, and herbs.

Test the germination of last year's surplus seeds before ordering new ones. Place ten seeds between damp paper towels. Keep them consistently damp and in a dark place. Check germination rates to determine how many seeds to use for your real planting.

Take an inventory of your preserved foods--in the freezer, in cans, or the root cellars. This should help you decide your seed order for the upcoming season.

Spread wood ashes around lilacs to benefit growth and bloom in the spring.

Test buds of peaches and other sensitive fruits for freeze damage. Bring in a few twigs cut from the trees and place them in a vase of water. If the twigs bloom in a week or two, expect blossoms in the spring and a crop next fall.

Set up birch branches that may have been bent by snow or ice, as soon as possible. If neglected, the branches will permanently adopt their leaning position.

Cut poles for peas, beans, and other climbers now. Peel off the bark and set them in a dry area until they are needed.

Keep this in mind while pruning. Fruit usually grows on the horizontal branches, rather than the vertical ones. Vertical branches may be trained to become horizontal by weighting them down for a few weeks. This may also be done in the summer.

A barrel or other covering placed over rhubarb plants will hasten the spring crop.

Start onions from seed now. They'll be ready for setting out in April. Onions from seed are generally firmer and longer lasting than from sets.

Start parsley indoors now. You may think you have successfully wintered over the plant, but it is a biennial and will soon go to seed.

Take cuttings of wintered-over lantana, coleus, fuchsia, and begonia for plants to be set in May or June.

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Joined: 2009-08-07
Whew!

That's a lot to remember :exmark:

My gardening chore for the month is reading the book I read last winter, The No Work Garden, similar to the book I read last winter, The Lazy Gardener.

The books have the methods for doing all kinds of gardening chores with the least amount of work that can be done effectively.

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Joined: 2009-08-17
Gardening jobs fr Feb??? How

Gardening jobs fr Feb??? How about trying to walk thru the snow drifts inside your garden! LOLOL At this rate.. I won't have to water all season!
deb

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Joined: 2009-08-07
RE: ,,,snow drifts inside your garden,,,

I thought the snow drifts were finally melted enough that I thought I could dig down through the hay I put down over the Jerusalem Artichokes to see if the ground was still thawed to get some out to cook,,,,the hay was a solid block of ice!

I heard the weather man say this mourning that we my be near our record of 126 days with snow on the ground this year!

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Joined: 2010-02-16
Well, here in California...

All the trees are blooming early and plants are sprouting. We received a lot of extra rain early, the desert is going to bloom like crazy this year! Last year my orange tree bloomed three times! Things are wacky when the weather in San Diego is nice most of the time.

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