Bee-and-SnowdropsFebruary is an interesting month, where winter still holds its grip on the garden with hoar frosts and blustery weather, but warmth and new shoots are also breaking through. If you’ve been holed-up inside for weeks, then you might start to feel the pull of the garden on your conscience; it starts to look…promising! Schemes and plans begin to pop into your head until before you know it – you’re out there weeding in the cold, muddy ground with a cup of tea and a smile on your face.

Where to start?

Cut cornus and salix back to near ground level to promote new growth, as the younger stems hold more vivid colour.

Trim hedges before birds begin nesting in them. nest in hedge

Prune wisteria to control growth and ensure a rich display of flowers. See the RHS link for more information. www.rhs.org.uk/advicewisteria

Pot on or plant out hard wood cuttings taken last year and pot on rooted cuttings of tender perennials too.

Plant bare root roses, lillies and alliums this month for summer displays. Lift and divide snowdrops ‘in the green’ that haven’t flowered yet if you want to create more plants.

Now is the time to move deciduous shrubs or trees as the frosts ease and the ground is workable, but the sap hasn’t started to rise.

Prune viburnum, winter jasmin and mahonia once their flowers have gone over.

Fruits and Veggies

apricot protectorStart sowing leeks, onions and celeriac under cover now. Prepare veg beds by weeding, adding mulch and digging it in. Chit potatoes ready to plant out later on.

Cut autumn raspberries down to the ground to promote new growth.

Protect apricot, nectarine and peach blossom now to protect their flowers from the last frosts.

Other little jobs to potter about with…

Make sure your sheds, greenhouses, tools and mowers are cleaned and serviced, ready for the busy months ahead.