Are you ready for Spring? We are so excited, we want to start our gardens now! It may still be cold in the mornings and cool during the day but there are still things you can do in your garden to get ready for Spring!
1. Plant Annuals
Once the frosts are done, you can plant cold-hardy annuals outdoors. Select annuals that can take a light frost such as pansy, dianthus, sweet alyssum, dusty miller, sweet pea, osteospermum, and calendula. If there is a cold snap, cover your plants with a sheet until it warms back up. Make sure to water the soil around your plants thoroughly. Wet soil holds the heat better than dry soil and will help warm the air close to the soil surface.
2. Check on your Houseplants
Make sure to keep indoor plant pests at bay. They thrive in the dry winter air and can ruin your favorite plants. Control pests with insecticidal soap or houseplant insecticide. Spray your plants weekly to help wash off invading insect pests and to increase the humidity around the plant. The more humid your plants home the happier your plant will be.
5. Plant Seeds
You can start many flowers and vegetables indoors in February. You can use grow lights to germinate begonia, geranium, coleus, eggplant, and peppers. Make sure to use a soilless seed-starting mix and place grow lights just a few inches over the top of the plants. Keep the lights on for about half the day to keep the plants warm. After your seedlings are up and growing, give them a bit of diluted liquid fertilizer when you water. Do not to start your plants too early. You want to read the seed pack to find out how many weeks it will take for your plants to develop into the proper size for the garden.
7. Prune Roses
February is a great time to prune your roses. Trim dead branches and any bloom stalks leftover from last year. You want to cut back your rose bushes by about a third each year so that they will keep their form. If you have climbers you may want to trim stray branches. You also want to make sure there is air circulation between the plants. This helps prevent common fungal problems such as black spot disease.
9. Plant Bulbs
Once the frosts are done, you can also plant bulbs outdoors. Summer bulbs such as crinum, agapanthus, dahlia, gloriosa, gladiolus, and canna can be planted while it is still cold. Place them where they will receive at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight a day. Make sure that the soil is well-drained and not wet and soggy after heavy rains. Mulch the bulbs to keep them warm in case of an unexpected cold snap and to minimize weeds. You can also purchase pre-sprouted plants at your local garden center. Bulbs are simple to grow, but some take a while to break dormancy, so potted plants will jumpstart the color show.