Brie's Gardening Ideas for February

Brie Arthur
Brie Arthur is a Soil3 team member and author of "The Foodscape Revolution" and "Gardening With Grains." With a background in ornamental plant production, Brie is revolutionizing the backyard gardening movement by her work across the US and the globe promoting sustainability and community gardening in urban Foodscapes. Brie's website: https://www.briegrows.com/
February 16, 2021 2 minute read

Winter greetings y’all! Are you ready for some spring weather? ME TOO! This chilly, WET winter has gotten me way off schedule as far as getting ready for the new growing season, which is why I am creating monthly to-do lists to help you stay on top of everything that needs to get done in the garden.

To make things easier to plan, I have broken down the February “chores” into simple categories. I've also included a series of three short videos about my broccoli growing experiment.

General Maintenance

February is a great month to get your space ready for the warmer days ahead.
  • Cut back perennials and grasses before they start to grow
  • Remove winter weeds while they are small: chickweed, vetch, henbit, geranium
  • Prune deciduous trees and shrubs
  • Mulch bare areas of landscape
  • Topdress open areas of your landscape with Soil³ to prep for planting again
  • Treat broadleaf evergreens for scale with dormant oil and a proper sprayer

Planting

  • Divide and transplant existing perennials, trees, and shrubs and plant new trees, shrubs, and perennials for easier establishment before it gets hot and dry
  • Refresh winter interest containers and annual plantings with cool season flowers and veggies

  • Refresh your knowledge of what to plant and when by reviewing this Planting Calendar
  • Plant potatoes
  • Sow cool season heading veggies such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and other cool season vegetables to harvest this spring

Here are three videos showing a broccoli sowing experiment I'm conducting. 

Video 1: Sowing broccoli seeds to compare a flat kept indoors and the other outdoors.

 

Video 2: Comparison made 5 days later.

 

Video 3: Comparison made 3 weeks later.

 

Planning

If you haven’t already, evaluate what worked and what didn’t in last year’s garden. Now is the time to make a plan for improving all the areas that didn’t wow you. Here is a link to my 2020 summer review: Summer Evaluations - The Best and Worst of Summer 2020

Try something new! The best way to feel engaged is to stretch your limits. Make 2021 the year you grow something different. For example, I have some big plans for garden renovations that include adding Daphne bushes in containers, because hope springs eternal and I am ready to try again! Time will tell if they land on my success or failure list.

Buy seeds for the warm season. This is especially important this year as seed companies are running out of supplies! Here are a few of my favorite seed suppliers:

Get your Soil³ ordered! You can never have enough quality compost on hand, and you can save $25 per bag by ordering before March 15!

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Flowering Now

Despite the wintery weather there are a few plants that are in their peak through the month of February. If you have room to add a few things, these are what I suggest:

  • Flowering Apricot (Prunus mume) - a shrub
  • Witch Hazel (Hamamelis x intermedia) - a small flowering tree, pictured below
  • Winter Iris (Iris unguicularirs) - an herbaceous perennial
  • Oregon Grape (Mahonia sp.) - a shrub
  • Winter Camellias (Camellia japonica) - a large, evergreen shrub

Want to learn more about each of these? I post daily plant profiles in my Instagram and the Brie Grows Facebook page.

 

February is the shortest month of the year and it will be over in a flash! Take advantage of any dry, sunny days by spending quality time in your garden getting ready for the spring. And I will be back in your inboxes with a fresh list of ideas for March so stay tuned!

Happy gardening,
Brie

 

Brie's Gardening Ideas for February

 

Did this help you out? Have any questions for clarity? Leave a comment below!