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 Click here
for February 2012 diary entry  

February vegetable sowing schedule
February flower sowing schedule

Details of what was sown in February

Seed germination

Click here
For February 2013 weather summary

February harvesting schedule
Details of our February harvest

Archive for previous years' diaries dating from 2007 can be accessed by clicking here

1 February
Our third lot of seeds arrived today from Plants of Distinction.

3 February
The second lot of lettuce seedlings have now begun to germinate.

The snowdrops are in bud beaten into flower my mini iris Katherine Hodgkins which are flowering in the front harden although not yet round the back.

The hellebore niger are only just starting to flower despite their common name - Christmas rose. Read more on my blog here.

16 February
We haven’t managed to get to the plot for almost a fortnight so I was interested to have a good look round to see how everything was doing.

The most disappointing sight was of our winter brassicas, They had produced great plants and we were full of hope for a good crop but unfortunately the pigeons had other ideas and had decimated the plants.

In previous years snow has accumulated on netting covering the brassicas and as a result the netting has suddenly collapsed flattening the plants beneath. This year we removed the netting as usually the pigeons leave the plants once they grow to a reasonable size but not this winter. Everyone on the site is complaining. The pigeons have even eaten away the sprout tops but fortunately have left the sprouts and the autumn cabbages - maybe they can’t deal with tight balls.

The garlic is growing steadily but is not as advanced as that growing in the cold greenhouse in the garden. That is the ordinary garlic - the elephant garlic is growing better on the plot!.

Many of the clumps of rhubarb are starting into growth - some far in advance of others but as we have various varieties this can be put down to whether the variety is an early or later producer. Hopefully though we are set for a good rhubarb harvest.

Having shunned animal manure since our problems with contamination and the things I read about manure during my research, last year we decided to try green manure. The results so far are looking promising. Some of the green manure that was planted for over winter has died down. This was the earliest lot sown so whether this was frost damage or the plant died naturally I’m not sure but some of the same type is still green. Two types of green manure were sown to over winter - phaecelia and winter tares.

The main reason for the plot visit was to harvest and replenish our vegetable stocks so we arrived with fingers crossed and were not disappointed.

I’m not sure how much longer we are going to be able to harvest the roots and leeks but the sprouts were showing signs that they are starting to blow. The beetroot was a surprise - we had expected it to have been frosted but the straw covering seems to have done its job.

Looking round the plot one thing that is for certain is that we need to start on some tidying up soon even though the ground is still very soggy.

Things are bursting into life in the garden. The hellebores are still strutting their stuff and shortly the snowdrops flowers will open to add to the display.

The bulbs are now growing away quickly and the daphne is beginning to open its flower buds. The sap is rising and spring is just around the corner - I hope.

17 &18 February
The potatoes have been moved out of the garage and into the greenhouse where they have been set out in trays to chit. Some had already started to form tiny shoots.. As there is still the chance of fairly keen frost the seed potatoes have been given the protection of a fw layers of fleece.

We have also planted some of our onion and shallot sets in modules to give them a start before they can be planted on the plot. We will have to make sure the sets don’t  become root bound before planting in open ground but this method has worked for us in the past.

19 February
As the weather stayed fair we decided to spend a little time tidying up the garden.

Last year one of the climbing roses had to be chopped back hard to make way for the erection of the summerhouse. It responded really well by putting on the healthiest growth ever and so this year I have given both our climbing roses the same treatment. The buddleias have also been cut back to about 30 centimetres (1 foot). It is important to be severe when pruning buddleia if you are to avoid them becoming straggly. The late flowering clematis have also been cut back to almost ground level.

The first seeds for the new growing season - onions, celeriac and celery - were sown. We usually avoid sowing seeds so early but these crops need a long growing season and so have been sown in quarter trays and placed under the indoor grow light.

28 February
The seedlings planted on the 19 February have now germinated - I just wonder whether these will go on to produce any sort of crop this year?

The bulbs in the garden are also beginning to flower so I’m hoping that this is a sign that spring is on it’s way.

February Gardening blog posts

February Gardener’s Weather Diary posts

February 2013

Some activities are described in more detail on our blogs - links below