Monthly Garden Schedule by Zone

Febuary Garden Chores for All USDA Grow Zones

Febuary Garden Chores for All USDA Grow Zones

Planting by USDA Zone is a good starting point to get a handle on what you should be thinking of planting and when. If you pair this overview of gardening tasks by zone with experience, local knowledge and good year on year note taking then you will be well on your way to a successful and confident gardener in no time! 

ZONE 4

  • Start stratifying perennial seeds that need this treatment.
  • Give your tools a good cleaning and sharpening.
  • Get your seed orders in if you haven’t already to ensure you get what you want.
  • Collect all of your seed starting equipment together so you’ll be ready to go. You will need lights, heat mats, sterile medium, and your preferred pot type.
  • Start your first seeds inside: onions! You can also start inside flowers and herbs that have a long germination period, like rosemary, impatience, and begonias.
  • If you aren’t a carpenter, now is a good time to try a straw bale cold frame.

ZONE 5

  • Give your tools a good cleaning and sharpening.
  • Get your seed orders in if you haven’t already to ensure you get what you want. This year plan to grow at least one new vegetable that you've never grown before; it may be better than what you are already growing.
  • Resist the urge to work in the garden! Warm spring days can be deceiving, and unpacking perennials too early can spell disaster when the weather inevitably turns again.
  • Collect all of your seed starting equipment together so you’ll be ready to go. You will need lights, heat mats, sterile medium, and your preferred pot type.
  • Start your first seeds inside for broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, eggplant, head lettuce, onions, and parsley. Most perennial flowers should be started inside by the end of the month as well. You can also start inside flowers and herbs that have a long germination period, like rosemary, snapdragons, and begonias.
  • If you aren’t a carpenter, now is a good time to try a straw bale cold frame.
  • When deciding on landscape plants, consider ordering trees and shrubs which provide cover and small fruits for our feathered friends. Consider species such as crabapple and hawthorn which can help lure hungry birds from cultivated fruits, if planted on the opposite side of the yard.

ZONE 6

  • Give your tools a good cleaning and sharpening.
  • Get your seed orders in if you haven’t already to ensure you get what you want.
  • Collect all of your seed starting equipment together so you’ll be ready to go. You will need lights, heat mats, sterile medium, and your preferred pot type.
  • Wash and sterilize seed-starting containers.
  • Start your first seeds inside for broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, eggplant, head lettuce, onions, and parsley. Most perennial flowers should be started inside by the end of the month as well. You can also start inside flowers and herbs that have a long germination period, like rosemary, snapdragons, and begonias.
  • If you aren’t a carpenter, now is a good time to try a straw bale cold frame.
  • If you have the space, plan to grow an extra row of food to share with those less fortunate in your area.
  • Give your Valentine a plant or a gift certificate for garden supplies.

ZONE 7

  • Give your tools a good cleaning and sharpening.
  • Get your seed final orders in if you haven’t already to ensure you get what you want.
  • Plant peas, potatoes and parsley towards the end of the month directly in the garden.
  • Direct sow outdoors seeds like Nigella, Poppy, and Larkspur so they get a few weeks of cold temps which will aid in their germination.
  • Avoid the spring rush and take your lawn mower and any other mechanized tools you use in for service.
  • If you haven’t already, now is a great time to prune your fruit trees, berry bushes, and other woody ornamentals on your property. You want to complete this while still dormant and before spring growth begins.
  • Harden off ready brassica seedlings outdoors in a coldframe. Towards the end of the month plant them in the garden beneath cloches or a plastic low tunnel.
  • On nice days, turn your compost pile. Or start one!
  • .If you have the space, plan to grow an extra row of food to share with those less fortunate in your area.
  • Give your Valentine a plant or a gift certificate for garden supplies.
  • Mow winter cover crops and turn them under if the soil is dry enough to cultivate.
  • Spread compost over beds that you will plant next month.

ZONE 8

  • Give your tools a good cleaning and sharpening.
  • Get your seed final orders in if you haven’t already to ensure you get what you want.
  • Direct sow carrots, Swiss chard, peas, collards, kale, kohlrabi, leaf lettuce, onions, parsley, parsnips, beets, leaf lettuce, radishes, salsify and spinach as soil and weather conditions permit.
  • Direct sow outdoors seeds like Nigella, Poppy, and Larkspur so they get a few weeks of cold temps which will aid in their germination.
  • Avoid the spring rush and take your lawn mower and any other mechanized tools you use in for service.
  • If you haven’t already, now is a great time to prune your fruit trees, berry bushes, and other woody ornamentals on your property. You want to complete this while still dormant and before spring growth begins.
  • Harden off ready brassica seedlings outdoors in a cold frame. Towards the end of the month plant them in the garden beneath cloches or a plastic low tunnel.
  • On nice days, turn your compost pile. Or start one!
  • .If you have the space, plan to grow an extra row of food to share with those less fortunate in your area.
  • Give your Valentine a plant or a gift certificate for garden supplies.
  • Mow winter cover crops and turn them under if the soil is dry enough to cultivate.
  • Get a soil test if you haven’t already done so.
  • Spread compost over beds that you will plant next month.

ZONE 9

  • Plants that perform better in the cooler months include petunia, pansy, verbena, dianthus, strawflower, and lobelia. Protect from frosts and freezing temperatures.
  • Many bulbs can be planted now. Provide adequate water for establishment and protect from cold weather with mulch. Some examples include Amazon lily, crinum, and agapanthus.
  • Numerous warm- and cool-season vegetables can be planted this month. Protect cold-tender veggies if a frost or freeze is predicted.
  • Give cold-damaged palm trees proper care to encourage their recovery.
  • Check citrus trees for scab disease. Apply a copper fungicide when new leaves appear and again when two-thirds of the flower blossoms have fallen.
  • Prune roses this month to remove damaged canes and improve the overall form. After pruning, fertilize and apply a fresh layer of mulch. Blooming will begin 8–9 weeks after pruning.
  • Fertilize fruit trees now if not done in January. Frequency and amount of fertilization depend on the age of the tree.
  • Consider replacing areas of grass with drought-tolerant, low-maintenance groundcovers.

ZONE 10

  • Plants that perform better in the cooler months include petunia, pansy, verbena, dianthus, strawflower, and lobelia. Protect from frosts and freezing temperatures.
  • Good performers for annual bedding plants in the Deep South’s mild winter include impatiens, verbena, dianthus, strawflower, and lobelia.
  • Many bulbs can be planted now. Divide large, crowded clumps. Provide adequate water for establishment. Some examples include Amazon lily, crinum, and agapanthus.
  • Consider replacing areas of grass with drought-tolerant, low-maintenance groundcovers.
  • Winter vegetable gardening is in full swing. Last month to plant cantaloupes, cucumbers, eggplant, lettuce, peppers, spinach, and tomatoes for a late spring harvest. Protect crops in the unlikely event of a frost or freeze.
  • Prune roses this month to remove damaged canes and improve the overall form. After pruning, fertilize and apply a fresh layer of mulch. Blooming will begin 8–9 weeks after pruning.
  • Fertilize shrubs and palms by spreading fertilizer evenly over the soil surface and watering it in. Follow with a fresh layer of mulch to conserve moisture and reduce weeds. Delay pruning any cold-damaged branches until new growth starts.
  • Disease-susceptible varieties of avocado and mango may require applications of copper fungicide.
  • Fertilize citrus trees now if not done in January. Frequency and amount of fertilization depend on the age of the tree.