Now is the time to think about cutting back the dead growth from perennials and grass that last season has left over and to start feeding those early spring bulbs such as Crocus.
To make sure you get the most out of your garden come Spring, Colin Dale who is head plant buyer and expert at Notcutts, has revealed his top garden jobs to crack on with this February.
Get rid of the old stuff
February is the perfect time to dig out winter weeds from your borders and add them to the compost heap. Make sure you rake out dead leaves and apply plenty of the homemade compost around the base of shrubs and perennials.
Cut back last season’s dead growth on perennials and grasses and add it to your compost heap too. Take care not to damage new shoots that will be just below the soil surface though.
Look after the early bulbs
Feed early spring bulbs such as Crocus and Winter Aconites as soon as they have finished flowering with a sprinkling of bone meal. You want to water this into the soil if the weather is dry.
Please take care when you're working on borders not to damage spring bulb shoots and flower buds. Continue to remove the spent flower heads from winter Pansies to encourage more blooms and feed them with half strength liquid fertilizer when it gets towards the end of the month. Make sure that containers of spring bulbs such as Tulips and Daffodils don't go short of water now that the pots are full of roots.
Get on with pruning
There is still plenty of colour you want to make the most of around this time of year.
Shrubs like coloured stemmed Dog Woods, Willows and Elderberries could do with a hard prune to keep them in bounds and produce more young shoots that have the best colour. Buddleja can be pruned hard (down to 60cm) towards the end of the month too.
Prune Clematis that flower after June by removing all of the previous year’s growth to within 15cm from the ground. Don’t worry if the plants are shooting – they will grow back with even more vigour!
Grape vines, whether they're ornamental and fruiting should be pruned back to their basic framework as soon as possible this month before the sap rises and the plants ‘bleed’ when they're cut.
Care for your crops
Continue to harvest your winter crops from the vegetable garden (they will go great for your spring culinary creations) and carry on with winter digging if you've not yet finished it.
Set potato ‘seed’ in egg trays and place them in a cool, frost free and light place to encourage shoots to start forming. It's also worth giving your greenhouse a pre-spring cleanand start to harden off any plants that have overwintered there by moving them outside on warmer days and back in at night.
- There's more garden tips and ideas in every issue of Yours magazine, out every fortnight on a Tuesday.