I’ll admit it’s just a bit cold and wet outside, but come February, there is quite a list of things you can do in your garden. It’s a good thing you got your beds all prepared during that dry spell. You did get them prepared, didn’t you? We just had the second warmest January on record, which gave you the chance to get out there.

Are you going to get your soil tested this year? This is a good time for it, as you can add amendments when you plant, or in some cases three or four weeks before. If your garden needs new (or just improved) irrigation equipment, a number of suppliers are running sales now. It’s also a great time to plan your garden. You may notice that all of the above things can be done with only a short time out in the weather.

Another thing in that category is pruning. The important part of pruning is studying the target plant to determine just what needs to go, and I find I can do that well looking out the window from my warm, dry house! Basically, if it is going to start growing next month, you better get it pruned this month. Mahonia, clematis, viburnum, fuschia, and salix are good targets for your nippers.

It’s also a reasonable time to plant lilies, allium bulbs, rhubarb crowns, and peas. If you didn’t get your beds prepared last month (I warned you!), do it now, and mix in some compost. You’ll be starting some seeds now in your greenhouse. You don’t have a greenhouse? Get one, and help out the economy! Ok, any warmish place will do if you can simulate the sun with some fluorescent lights. When you see Crocuses in your neighbor’s yard, be ready to plant out lettuce and cabbage starts. When the Daffodils bloom, you can put out turnips and spinach. It’s not just about vegies. Start seeds now for Snapdragons, Petunias, and many herbs. They won’t be ready to go into the ground for 8-10 weeks, but don’t worry, I’ll warn you! 

If you do everything I suggested, you’ll be way ahead. You won’t be ahead of every other diligent gardener, but you’ll be way ahead of me. I’m hoping to get all those things done, but me and "hoping" don't have a great track record.