Gardening jobs for February

garden jobs, garden design tasks, irish gardens, february gardening

Cleaning out perennial flower beds ready for planting

February can be a month of anticipation in the garden.  We are itching for the warmer weather and the burst of spring when our gardens really get going.  However, a little bit of basic work now can pay dividends by reducing the workload later and giving us a head start to the season, especially if the weather is mild like it has been in Ireland for much of the winter.  Here’s a bullet point summary of some of the gardening jobs that you can do in February:

  1. Try to get your bare-root planting completed this month.  This will give the roots time to “bed-in” before the plants energy goes in to leafing up next month.  Bare-root plants are available at low-cost at this time of year, are easy to plant; simply, the best way to plant new hedgerows and  woodland areas.
  2. It’s a great time to weed planting areas before weeds get established.  In Ireland, there has been little frost to check the growth of perennial weeds like thistle and dock.  Tweak out any young weeds before they get a chance to get established ensuring that as much root as possible is removed.
  3. Give your perennial flowering plants a haricut, removing any decayed stems.  Coarse grasses can be cut back now, but be wary as some softer grasses such as Stipa tenuissima Poneytail grass resent having the chop!
  4. Cut back woody stems of robust shrubs and trees that have become overgrown.  Trim from the base upwards leaving growth at the top where possible.  If you need to cut back top growth carefully remove selected stems rather than giving your shrubs a bowler haircut!
  5. You can start to “chit” your potatoes, that is place them in a light, cool area to allow the “eyes” of the potatoes to produce shoots.  This will give them a head-start when they are planted out in a few weeks time.
  6. It is a good time of year to browse seed catalogues and order your seeds of specialist or unusual plants.  Growing plants from seed can be a low cost and satisfying way of establishing a garden.
  7. On warm days, perennial plants can be lifted and divided.  This is a super way to generate new plant material for your garden on the cheap.  This will also put a new lease of life in to your existing plants by giving them new space for growth.
  8. You can sow annuals, such as geraniums, Begonias and Busy Lizzies indoors on a windowsill or in a propagator to transplant later on.
  9. It is a great time of year to review the evergreen and winter colour trees and shrubs in your garden.  Have you got enough winter colour, form and texture. Plan and plant now so that you have lashings of colour next winter.
  10. And don’t forget that now is the ideal to make a design plan for your garden.  Get ahead of the posse so that it is ready to implement in the next month or two.
    spring flowering plants, garden flowers, hellebores, garden plants, design your garden

    Hellebores are a wonderful plant for the spring garden

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