February in the Garden

February invites the first signs of spring into our gardens; days are lengthening, bulbs begin to emerge from the ground, and colour in the garden is just around the corner. This month is about cleansing (after the Latin word februum which means purification), and there’s no better time than now to give your garden a little TLC in preparation for spring.

Tidy Up

Flowers

  • Remove faded flowers, such as Winter Pansies and Violas, from containers to encourage them to flower more during spring and prevent from going to seed.
  • Deadhead early flowering plants such as Primulas regularly to encourage fresh flowers.
  • Remove any dead or decaying leaves from container plants to avoid encouraging slugs and snails in early spring.

Grasses

  • Deciduous grasses which have been left unpruned over winter should now be cut back to the ground.
  • Remove dead material from evergreen grasses to make space for new growth in the coming months.
  • Tidy up decaying material around perennials and remove any leaf litter to discourage the slugs and snails as they arrive in early spring.

Cutting Garden

  • Prepare your cut flower beds by removing any stubborn perennial weeds, such as brambles or bindweed, which may be hiding.
  • If the soil is particularly stony, it can be sieved and raked until the texture is nice and fine.
  • Borders can also be given a boost by adding organic feed such as chicken manure and seaweed.

Looking after your lawn:

  • Remember to keep off the grass when there’s a frost, as the blades are more susceptible to damage which could lead to lawn diseases and other problems.
  • Ensure you brush off any debris or leaves which have fallen onto your lawn, as they can smother and cause discolouration to the grass.
  • Towards the end of the month, if the grass has produced some growth, you may be able to give your lawn a light trim with the lawnmower.

Planting Summer Bulbs

There are many lovely late-spring and summer bulbs which although usually planted in the autumn, if you missed that slot, early spring provides another opportunity. Below are some beautiful bulbs suitable for planting this month.

Allium

Alliums are easy to grow and once established return reliably every year; if planted in February will flower in late spring and early summer.

Lilies

Lilies can be planted in February and March and make a great scented display. If your garden has wet, heavy soil they are better planted in containers.

Anemone

Anemone can be planted from February onwards. The best chance of ensuring summer bulbs flower the following year is to feed them during the growing season.

Crocosmia

Crocosmia can be planted in the spring for flowering in late summer and make a great display. They’re easy to grow and return reliably each year.

Prepare for your summer garden by shopping our New Spring 2020 range HERE!

Alternatively, you can request our Spring 2020 catalogue here.

January in the Garden

January may seem a little dull and grey in the garden, but in reality it is an exciting time for fresh starts, looking ahead, and planning a beautiful garden for the twelve months ahead. Jobs in the garden this month are mostly about keeping things trim and tidy in preparation for the year to come.

Christmas Trees

By now Christmas decorations are packed away and trees taken down. However, if your tree has been dumped in the garden for the past week or so, why not recycle it. Christmas trees can be shredded into mulch to help keep moisture in during winter and protect tender plants from frost damage.

Cut Backs

January calls for clean sweeps and clearing collapsed herbaceous plants is a must-task. Leave most stems on your plants to provide a home for insects but chop out the bent stems and pile them in a corner so the bugs can snooze until spring.

In the Flower Garden

  • Prune your Wisteria and Rose bushes
  • Cut back ornamental grasses
  • Tidy up perennials
  • Remove Hellebore leaves
  • Deadhead winter Pansies
  • Cut back Willows

Why not start thinking ahead and pre-order one of our NEW pre-planted hanging baskets? Click here to shop.

Frost Protection

Keep tender plants in the greenhouse or in a cold frame if not done so already. You should also raise any containers on feet and keep them grouped against a house wall to utilise the warmer temperature.

Any terracotta pots that aren’t frost proof should be moved indoors or in a shed, failing that wrapping in bubble wrap or fleece should prevent cracking.

Planting and Caring for Fruit Plants

We’ve been lucky to have a fairly mild winter so far, and as the soil isn’t frozen this year January is a perfect time to plant bare-rooted fruit trees and bushes. You can also crack on with pruning currants and gooseberry bushes.

Click here to browse our extensive range of fruit trees and plants.

Getting ready for Spring

  • Clean pots, tools, water butts and greenhouses in preparation for spring. this will set you up for a great growing season.
  • Start planning what you want to do with your garden in the months to come. Now is the time to order bulbs and plants from the comfort of your armchair.
  • Check your winter protection is still working for you – survey any stakes, supports and ties that might have been damaged in bad weather.
  • Continue looking after wildlife – put out food for hungry birds and continue to leave some areas of your garden uncut for shelter until the spring.

Pruning Apple and Pear Trees

How much:

  • Aim to take between 10-20% off the whole canopy in one winter. Work around the tree evenly and keep in mind that less is more – if you’re unsure, it’s better to come back to it next year and do some more then.

What to achieve:

  • The more you prune, the stronger the regrowth (if the tree is healthy). Your aim is to take out a bit of old wood each winter to stimulate new growth. The majority of fruiting wood should be quite young, one to four years old, as that fruits best.

We have a fantastic collection of Apple and Pear trees, available to buy now. Click here to view.

ALL throughout January we are running weekly giveaways!

For a chance to WIN our BLUEBERRY ALL SEASONS COLLECTION (worth £11.98), simply head to our Instagram page HERE or click the image below, and follow the instructions.

A WINNER will be chosen at random next Monday. Good luck!