What Should I Be Doing In My Garden In February?

Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:47 pm

The garden in February – with snow or without: Now trees and shrubs are cut, the vegetable patch is prepared and the first plants are pulled forward. We have a checklist for you so that you know what work is coming up this month.


General gardening in February

  • Plan the garden: if you have not yet drawn up plans or sketches, you can still use the time in February. Pick out appropriate plants and seeds for the coming gardening season. Where there is extra sun, you can also plant winter-blooming woody plants and some hardy perennials now.
  • Transplant and transplant plants: If the soil is no longer too moist, you can plant evergreens and leaf-loss plants in the garden now, in February. Be careful not to let the root balls dry out during light frosts. Hardy plants and shrubs that lose leaves can be transplanted now. Tip: You will improve your sandy and clay soil by spreading mulch over the surface.
  • Maintain lawn: Actually, you can still take your time with lawn care. However, in areas of the lawn where puddles form, you will need to provide drainage for the water. To do this, prick the ground with a fork so that the water can then drain away. Tip: Iron sulfate (moss killer) can be used to remove moss from the lawn. Sprinkled thinly over it, the moss will turn completely black and die after two weeks.
  • Cover compost: Cover your finished compost with a tight plastic tarp to prevent moisture from getting to it. Too much moisture will interfere with the rotting process and cause rotting.
  • Maintain garden tools: If you haven’t already repaired and maintained your tools before the winter break, now is the time to do it. Now is the best time to do it, because the new gardening season hasn’t really started yet. Clean the tools and then rub linseed oil on the iron parts.

The flower and perennial garden in February

In February, individual spring heralds can already be seen in the garden, enlivening the landscape and setting colorful accents.

What Should I Be Doing In My Garden In February?

Plant bulbs and fertilize: Lily bulbs, which bloom magnificently in summer, must be planted in the garden in February. The hole in the ground should be deep enough, with the bulbs about 15 to 20 centimeters below ground, so they can develop. “Winter frost can not harm the bulbs, but their flaky surface tends to dry out in the air. That’s why you should plant them in January and February,” explains Carlos van der Veek, Fluwel’s bulb specialist. Even now in February, you can still plant spring-flowering bulbs in the garden. However, they will then bloom later.

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Blumenzwiebeln in Körben

First fertilization: As soon as the first foliage appears on perennials, loosen the soil before planting and spread a little compost, then cover the shoot tips with brushwood. Tip: Fertilize the beds and shrubs also with dried horse manure.

Sow summer flowers: You can sow summer flowers such as busy lilies, petunias and geraniums in trays at the end of February. For the seedlings to grow healthy and robust, they need enough light. It is best to place the seedlings by the window in bright light, or you can help with artificial light for at least four hours a day.

Control perennials: If you planted perennials in the fall, check the seating of the young plants in February: If they sit too loosely in the ground, you need to press them down with your hands. If that is not enough, you should replant them again, then water thoroughly.

The fruit and vegetable garden in February

If the weather is relatively warm, you can get started in the fruit and vegetable garden right now.

Prepare vegetable beds: If you have not already taken action in the fall, you can dig up the garden in February and fill it with manure and humus. If the weather is dry and frost-free, you can already prepare the first beds with hoe and rake ready for sowing. Tip: During this process, remove the first weed roots, they are now still manageable.

Garten umgraben

Planting berry fruit: Berry bushes are good to plant now: Gooseberries and currants can be planted bare-root, i.e. without root balls, in the garden in February. To ensure that the shrubs grow robustly, you should shorten the root tips somewhat and cut back above-ground shoots by about half.

Advance rhubarb: Rhubarb makes its presence felt as early as February with red leaf shoots: If you can’t wait, now is the best time to advance the plant; it will be ready for harvest after four weeks. To do this, cover the plants with a perforated black film at a sufficient distance from the plant or put a bucket over it. When it reaches the foil, the rhubarb can be harvested. However, repeat this procedure only every two years, otherwise the plant will not be able to regenerate sufficiently.

Grow early vegetables: You can sow flower and pointed cabbage, savoy cabbage and lettuce as early as February on the windowsill or in the greenhouse. Tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers can also be grown in a heated greenhouse. However, make sure that the sowing is not too much exposed to the blazing sun. Initial outdoor sowings are also possible, including peas, cress, carrots and radishes, for example. Tip: Clear away all twigs and leaves that have served as frost protection so far.

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Gardening on balcony & terrace in February

Things are happening in the winter quarters: when the days get longer, pot and balcony plants also start to sprout and can hardly wait to get out into the fresh air again.

Balkon wartet auf wärmere Jahreszeit

Pruning shoots: February gardening includes checking plants that are housed in winter quarters for long and thin shoots. Cut the shoots completely, otherwise the plants will lose their shape. Continue to ventilate when the weather is not too cold, and water container plants regularly but sparingly. Tip: For many potted plants, February is a good time to repot.

Care for geraniums: Geraniums that have been overwintered want to be cared for now. Towards the end of the month, you should repot old plants in fresh soil. To help the plants grow into a compact shape, trim the shoots back to two to three leaf nodes. Put the summer flower in a bright window, then it will sprout faster. By the way, February is also the right month for propagation, respectively, to take cuttings.

Gardening in February: trees and shrubs

It can still take some time before spring really arrives. Therefore, in February, focus on tree work in the garden. Now is the best time to do it.

Maintain ornamental shrubs and trees: Regular watering is one of the essential gardening tasks, even in February. On frost-free days, with dry weather, water boxwood, rhododendron and conifers. Coat tree trunks with lime broth, so that the bark of the tree does not crack. This often affects trees during large temperature fluctuations.

Baum und Sträucher im Winter

Pruning woody plants: Prune your fruit trees in winter to encourage leaf and branch growth. However, only prune fruit trees during persistently frost-free days. You can also heavily thin out hedges, overly dense ornamental shrubs and shrub roses during this weather. Ornamental woody species, however, which already bloom in spring, are excluded from pruning.

Take care of tree wounds: Especially when pruning stronger branches, large wounds occur that must be treated afterwards. First, cut the edge smooth with a sharp knife and coat it with wound sealant. Tip: Dead leaf debris must also be removed now in any case.

Transplanting shrubs: Before shrubs sprout again in March/April, you can still move them to another place in the garden in February. However, make sure the weather remains frost-free here as well. Dig up the plant generously – don’t rip it out – and shorten the roots a bit. Place the plant in the new planting hole, fill it with excavated soil, plant debris and compost and tamp it down. After transplanting, you must always keep the plant moist so that the roots do not dry out.

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Pest control

Pests that are still active in February are pretty tough. Make sure plants that have survived the winter well so far have a good start to the new gardening season.

Check and remove glue rings: If you placed glue rings on the trunks of fruit trees in the fall, you should now check them regularly. Apply new glue or change the glue rings if the glue has become brittle. Check the trunk for pests even under and above the glue ring and brush them off with a wire brush.

Leimring kontollieren

Fend off red pustule disease: This fungal disease is particularly noticeable in deciduous trees after prolonged drought or frost damage. It mainly affects dead wood of maple, chestnut, ash and linden trees, and later also affects healthy wood. You can recognize the pest by wilting of the foliage and discoloration of the wood. In autumn spherical red and in spring cylindrical cream-colored fruiting bodies are noticeable. It is best to cut back the infested parts to the healthy wood.

Prevent curl disease: If you have a peach tree, you can treat it with tonics as early as February. The curl disease infects the trees even before the first leaf shoots. In this particularly mild weather, you effectively prevent the fungal disease with early and repeated care.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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