Late Winter Gardening To-Do List
Its February, that means spring is just around the corner and there is a ton of stuff to do in your garden. Like most of us, we take time off from the garden and may even ignore it for a few months all together.
Normally about this time of year, I have the garden all cleaned up. But this past winter has been a lot colder and even more snow/ice than usual. Between a crazy work schedule and the weather, I keep putting the yard work on hold. Image Source: flickr
Yesterday, I was out in the yard scratching my head and figuring out my late winter gardening to-do list. I realized that there are a few things I can do to get the garden ready for the new growing seasons. So today I will share with you some things you can do get started with your late winter gardening check list.
There are a few things on the list that you can do in the fall or anytime throughout the winter, but it should they be done before the growing season starts. So for today’s article, I will share with you a handy little list of things you can do in your garden. Not everything you need to do in the winter for your garden is listed here and some of them may not apply to your garden zone. Do a little research or contact us, we can see about finding out what’s best for your area or direct you to someone/site that can help you.
Late Winter Gardening To-Do List
- Cut back your roses, trees, and plants that die back in the winter months. Depending on where you are at, cutting back your roses in late winter will promote new growth and the overall health of your roses. Just don’t cut them back to early it might cause them to bud out.
- Pull up any weeds, vines, and unwanted plants that you might have missed from your final summer/fall garden clean up.
- Fluff your mulch bed and add a little more mulch to pile if it’s a little low. Over the winter months, heavy rains and snow can flatten your mulched flower beds. You may even lose some of it. Fluffing and adding extra mulch will keep the roots of your plants warm for those last few weeks of cold weather.
- Get your cool weather crops ready to plant. Make sure to get your onions in the ground now if you are in the DFW. February is almost to late for a spring crop. Once the weather gets warmer, the onion sets won’t do as well. They like a cool beginning and warm season for harvest.
- Prep your garden beds. Once your weeds and unwanted plants are removed, its time to get your beds ready for the spring growing season. For new and empty beds, add compost and other organic materials. Then till in or mix in with your shovel. If you are planning on adding irrigation, this the perfect time to get the pipes and sprinklers set. Once your beds are prepped, add a layer of mulch to the bed.
- Check your irrigation system. During the winter months, your system is probably shut down or on limited use. During this time, if something fails in your system, you won’t know until you turn it on.
- Plan and build your new flower beds. In the warmer months of the south, I hate working on flower beds. Hauling loads of soil, building retaining walls, and adding irrigation is painful in 105+ degree weather. In the DFW area, February and early March is great time to get your spring vegetable / flower beds built. If you are planning on the beds being for summer plantings. Its still a great time to get your beds ready by spring, but you can push it out to late March to late April before the temperatures start rising.
- Check and maintain your power tools. This little project should have already been done, but if you haven’t, its time to pull out your lawn mowers, string trimmers, chain saws and the rest of your garden tools. Since they weren’t put away for the winter, drain the fuel/oils from the equipment and inspect your power tools. I’m not a big fan of leaving power tools empty. This can lead to gumming up your equipment. To avoid this, add a little fresh gas and add STA-BIL to stabilize your fuel. While you are at it, add some to your fuel storage tanks if you still have gas from last season. As for the rest of your hand tools, clean them up, inspect the blades, sharpen as needed, and add a little WD-40 to the raw metals.
- Its time to add pre emergent to your lawn and flower beds. Twice a year you can add pre emergent to prevent weed seeds (and wanted seeds) from germinating. You want to add pre emergent to the needed areas of your garden in the fall and late winter. Getting your pre emergent out in February will prevent those early spring weeds from coming up and its one less thing to worry about during your spring garden prep.
Please note: This is just a list that I find useful in the DFW area. Not everything on this list works for your garden or is right for your area. If you would like to add your tips, please submit a guest article request or add your tips in the comments area. This is a growing list and we will try and add them to the list.