Jobs to do this month
Water deeply during dry periods. Use soil wetters to encourage moisture to penetrate into the soil. Weed and feed plants. Plant evergreens.
Flowers and Shrubs
Prune flowering shrubs after they have finished blooming. Remove dead flowers from dahlias. Spray plants for powdery mildew. Buy new season’s bulbs and put cold climate bulbs into the fridge eg. tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, crocus. Chill them for at least six weeks. Plant pots of Freesias and jonquils. Prune Christmas bush lightly when flowers have finished. Prune fuchsias. Take cuttings off evergreen plants including natives. Stake dahlias and chrysanthemums to prevent wind damage. Add dolomite to soil ready for planting sweet peas. Prune lavender by 1/3. Prune hydrangeas
Fruit trees and vegetables
Feed fruit trees with citrus plant food or mulched small trees with cow manure, keeping clear of trunk. Control citrus leaf miner and treat collar rot. Collect and destroy fallen fruit from fruit trees.
Mow lawn regularly to prevent weeds from seeding. Treat moss in the lawn.
What to sow this month
Bellis perennis, Flanders poppy, Iceland poppy, marigold, sweet pea, wallflower, lobelia.
Beetroot, cabbage, carrots, dwarf beans, peas, lettuce, mustard, onions, radish, silver beet, spinach, swedes, turnips.
Birth flowers for February
Traditional - Iris or violet
Faith, humility, valour, hope,, and wisdom. In ancient times iris roots were used in perfume and medicine. Several legends tell of violets springing up on the graves of virgins and saints. A garland of violets worn about the head prevents dizziness.
Romans would decorate banquet tables with violets in the belief that the flowers could prevent drunkenness.
Australian - Brachyscome (Brachyscome multifida)
A perennial useful in cottage gardens. Bright blue daisy-like flowers that enjoy sunny, well drained positions.
Quote of the month