Gardening Tips Column February 2019
We didn’t have room to fit the regular Gardening Tips column into our February edition, so here the owner of Lichfield Garden Centre, Bryon Lewis, gives us his top gardening advice for a (very cold!) February:
“Early Spring marks the start of the gardening season, and there’s plenty to be done in your garden to get ready for the long summer days ahead…
Firstly keep a check on the weather – up to now we’ve not had any major snow (as I write this it’s just flippin’ miserable!), but do take care to wrap up any more tender shrubs such as Cordyline (Palm) and Camellias – frost and snow can damage Camellia flower buds, and if snow does settle in the tightly-knit blades of Cordyline it can start to rot the plant off. Also remove any snow from your greenhouse roof – the weight of any significant downfall can damage the frame!
It’s also time to take a look at the vegetable garden. Seed Potatoes will shortly be available – buy them early for the best selection and keep them somewhere warm and dark (like an airing cupboard). This will encourage small shoots – or chits, to grow. When these are around an inch long they will almost be ready for planting into the garden.
Out in the garden, and particularly in pots or window boxes, replace any tired looking patio plants with spring colour in the form of Primroses, Polyanthus and ready potted Spring Bulbs such as Crocus or Daffodils. These will be coming into flower now, through to late Spring.
* Handy tip – instead of properly planting potted bulbs into containers, just ‘plunge’ them in, pot and all. Once they have finished flowering, you can then remove them from their temporary home and put them straight into the garden, and fill the gap with something else in flower.
If you need to move shrubs around, now can be a good time to do it. As the plants are mainly dormant, they shouldn’t suffer too much if moved now. A few things to remember – dig the proposed hole first and enrich with some fresh compost and a little Bonemeal (a good root encourager). Then water the shrub you want to move, dig it out with as big a rootball as possible and pop it straight into the new planting hole.
I think now is the ideal time to put the kettle on and maybe dig out the sledge! See you all next month!”
Byron Lewis runs Lichfield Garden Centre, at Curborough Countryside Centre, Watery Lane, Lichfield.
Call 01543 254306, visit their website at: www.lichfieldgardencentre.co.uk and they can also be found on on Facebook and twitter.