February in the Midwest is still bringing us some cold weather; although we have had a few days where the snow is melting off, leading us to thoughts of our spring garden. You will find facts and information on tasks for your yard and garden for the month of February. This will include lawn care, flower care, vegetables and fruits, houseplants, and trees and shrubs.
- Rake fallen leaves to prevent lawn suffocation.
- Review lawn service contracts and make changes.
- Get a jump on the season and tune up and repair lawn mowers.
- Avoid injury to the grass; keep foot traffic to a minimum when the soil is frozen.
- Dormant seed when about 1 inch of snow is on the ground as melting, freezing and thawing will help move the grass seeds into the soil.
- Start seeds for transplanting
- Check fall planted perennials and water if needed.
- Watch for frost heaving of tender perennials and cover them.
- Replenish winter mulch around grafted tea roses and other plants/
- Check bulbs in storage for decay and discard.
- Prepare orders for mailing.
- Obtain a soil test and make needed improvements.
FEBRUARY VEGETABLES and FRUITS
- Make garden layouts to assist with planning process.
- Order seeds.
- Soil test testing is conducted at all Extension offices in metro areas.
- Start broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage transplants.
- Prune fruit trees- apples, pears, and cherries.
- Prune peach and nectarines just prior to bloom time.
- Select varieties and order new fruit trees.
- Check for rabbit and rodent damage on fruit trees.
- Apply manure or compost to garden areas and incorporate for soil improvement.
- Prepare garden soil for early planting on warm days.
- Do not work soil when wet.
- Check stored seeds and discard old supply.
- Prune grapes, raspberries and blackberries.
FEBRUARY TREES and SHRUBS
- Check for rabbit damage on young trees and shrubs. Water fall-planted trees and shrubs.
- Apply dormant oil for control of scale and mites.
- Take advantage of warm days and begin spring pruning.
- Delay pruning spring flowering trees and shrubs until after bloom.
- Twigs and branches of spring shrubs cut and brought indoors add a splash of color.
- Carefully remove snow from limbs with a broom.
- Water evergreens if soil is dry and not frozen.
- Rotate plants to produce a balanced plant.
- Withhold fertilization until spring light arrives.
- Check plants for insects, mites and other problems.
- Remove dust from plants by placing in the shower under room temperature water.
- Give a plant to a friend for a winter pick-me-up.
- Repot root bound plants in a 1-inch larger pot.
- Take cuttings of plants to make new ones for friends.
- Shape plants for spring growth to produce a more balanced and attractive plant.
*Information gathered from Johnson County K-State Research and Extension. They offer free information fact sheets, and can be visited at www.johnson.ksu.edu.