You can’t go wrong by staying inside.
Browse through our old articles on the website. Download some e-books from the library. Ok, seriously though even though it’s darn cold out there you can still get cracking. Here is the list for February 2014:
Plant some seeds. Even better try out some sprouts. They are fast, healthy and you don’t have to go outside to do it. You can also get cracking on seeding the tomatoes too. If you haven’t planted from seed before, we have some seed starting workshops coming up later this month and March.
You can also browse and shop for seeds in our new online store: http://shop.artsnursery.com
You can plan out your garden bed or a container garden. There are some great websites out there…Pinterest and Houzz to name a few…I’ve wiled away many an hour on those sites.
Bring some inspiration inside. There is some glorious winter colour out there; Witch hazel, Pink Dawn Viburnum, Red Twig Dogwood etc. You can even try your hand a forcing flowering Cherries or Forsythia. Build a bouquet and get inspired.
Winter pruning – now is the time. Actually wait a week so that you won’t freeze off your fingers and compact the soil with your trampling feet on the frozen ground. Remember never to remove more than 1/3 of the tree or shrub. Sound like a broken record, don’t I.
If you need some tips keep your eyes open for pruning classes in your neck of the woods or you can come by the nursery and talk to Karin. There are also some good you tube videos out there. If it’s more than you can or want to handle, call a Certified Arborist…they won’t bite.
If you prune fruit trees at this time it will speed up growth, if you summer prune (end of July beginning of August) you will slow the growth. Choose wisely. If you are thinking about grafting up an apple tree, now is the time to collect scion wood (6-8 inches long, pencil width or as close to that as you can, from the growing tips). Place in a sealed zip lock with a moist paper towel and place in the fridge. I start my grafting in March and end by the end of April. If you want to learn how to graft your own apple tree we’ll have a class on April 5th.
You can possibly think about liming by end of Feb or early March. I’ll be ready to talk lawns by then.
Give your stored bulbs a shake. Toss any that are rotten. Mist the shavings or peat moss.
Give your tools a quick inspection…might be a good time to take your lawnmower blades in to be sharpened and any other tools you want sharpened. You can beat the rush.
If you have fish in your pond make sure you’ve got a section of it free from ice for gas exchange. You do not need to clear the entire pond…the ice will actually insulate it. There are pond heaters or bubblers that will keep a small section thawed, or you can just cut a hole in the ice and try to make sure it doesn’t freeze over for more than a couple of days. Make sure you don’t disturb the water layers…the fish are on the bottom of the pond where the water is actually warmer. There is some excellent reading on the web for this.
If you want to try out your new warm winter coat and enjoy the sunshine…even though it’s minus something out there, try taking a walk through a local botanical garden to check out that glorious winter colour and even fragrance!!
A few fragrant winter plants include Witchhazels, Sarcococca and Hyacinths.
See you next month!