Get ready for greener gardening days as wintertime winds down

February is an ideal time to prune many woody plants.

February is an great time to prune several woody crops.

With the to start with frosts of the yr at the rear of us and some freezing nighttime temperatures, it at last feels like wintertime is below. Even so, as the calendar flips above to February, we can be expecting the quick and moderate Florida winter season to come to an close shortly. This thirty day period is a time to put together for greener times ahead.

Time to prune?

This thirty day period is a person of the very best to prune a lot of of our trees and shrubs, major the pruning period to be nicknamed, the “St. Valentine’s Massacre” by some of our Master Gardener Volunteers. Proper now, trees are dormant building them much less pressured right after cuts and we are even now a few months away from when they commence pushing drinking water and sugars up to the branches, which can make them seep sap. Mid-February is the most effective time to prune crape myrtles, but make certain to do it correctly without having committing “crape murder.” Really substantially any woody tree or shrub can use structural pruning this time of yr, besides for those that bloom on outdated wooden these types of as azaleas.

Waiting around for restoration

With recent frosts and freezes, many of your perennials, tender crops, and even your garden may possibly look a very little rough but don’t act way too speedily.

Most crops go dormant in the wintertime, dropping considerably of their green coloration and will continue to be that way until finally April. Do not attempt to proper troubles with chemical sprays or fertilizer as they will probable not enhance the problem of your crops, will stop up washing away into waterways or groundwater, and if they do spur refreshing progress, we may well continue to see more cold weather forward and this will be ruined. A less than environmentally friendly garden is fully normal now and any extensive-phrase hurt very likely can not be assessed until eventually spring.

As for plants that have been killed back again from the chilly, wait to prune until eventually at minimum mid-March when the threat of frost is past. This lifeless substance can essentially support protect the base of the plant.

Time for lawn weed manage

Did you know the ideal time to command once-a-year, heat period weeds in your lawn for the summer time is in the thirty day period of February? Preemergent herbicides are applied and supply a barrier of chemical compounds that will destroy weeds as they get started to improve in the spring. Utilize a preemergent product or service labeled for turf use and the species your implementing it to (i.e., St. Augustine grass, Bahia grass, and so forth.) to cease awful once-a-year weeds like doveweed and crabgrass when daytime temperatures increase above 65 degrees for 4-5 days. This day is typically in mid to late February. If you wait for a longer period into the spring, the weeds will by now be increasing and then the product or service will not operate.

Some basic safety safety measures should be taken to defend your garden, on your own, and the natural environment so be confident to read the label before making use of the merchandise and abide by all instructions. Also, under no circumstances utilize preemergent items to regions that have been lately sodded, will be sodded shortly, or have been/will be seeded. There are also products accessible that can be employed as preemergents in landscape beds as properly.

Vegetable back garden preparations

Whilst you can nevertheless plant quite a few awesome time vegetables in February, spring veggies are suitable all around the corner. This is a excellent time of 12 months to get your soil tested, amend the backyard garden soil, and set up any infrastructure these kinds of as irrigation or lifted beds though temperatures stay pleasant. System out your yard, purchase seeds, and if starting up crops for transplant, think about the appropriate occasions to get them heading so you can get them in ground as before long as suggested. For additional information on vegetable gardening in Florida, see

Issues to plant in February:

Vegetables: Broccoli, cabbage, collards, lettuce, mustard, green onions, parsley, peppers, potatoes, Swiss chard and turnips.

Annuals: Baby’s breath, calendula, carnation, dusty miller, Marguerite daisy, pansy, petunia, snapdragon and statice.

Bulbs, tubers or rhizomes: Agapanthus, Aztec lily, caladium, canna lily, crinum lily, dahlia, gloriosa lily, ixia, kaffir lily, strolling Iris, African lily, spider lily, yritonia, tuberose, voodoo lily and Zephyr lily.

Wayne Hobbs is an extension agent in environmental horticulture for Clay County.

This short article at first appeared on Florida Times-Union: Yard Assistance: Put together for greener gardening times as wintertime winds down

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