February : Get Ready For Spring

February is a transition month here in East Tennessee.  We’re still in the middle of Winter, but Spring is just around the corner.  Cold nights, maybe some snowy or icy days yet to come, but every now and then a hint of warmer weather gives us hope and inspiration.  So let’s get Ready for Spring.

February 2nd is Groundhog Day.  The first official Groundhog Day was celebrated at Gobbler’s Knob in Punxsutawney, Penn. on Feb. 2 1887.  Since then every year on Feb. 2 a groundhog named Punxsutawney Phil is observed coming out of his hole.  Legend has it, that if he sees his shadow there will be six more weeks of Winter.  If he doesn’t, there will be an early Spring.  Now Phil is in Pennsylvania, We’re here in East Tennessee so we can’t really rely on Phil’s  predictions.  We do know that it is still Winter but Spring is coming.  Here are some things that can be done in the garden before the Spring season explodes its glorious bounty.

Things You Can Do
  • Clean out any existing bluebird houses or buy a new Bluebird house.  February is the month that they will be nesting.  Make sure to place your Bluebird house within 50 feet of a tree or tall shrub.  Also face the hole towards the tree or shrub so that the young can fly to it on their first flight from the box.
  • Trim any grasses and late season blooming trees and shrubs.  The grasses can be trimmed nearly to the ground.  The trees and shrubs can be trimmed according to the shape and size desired.  Make sure not to prune any early Spring blooming trees and shrubs.
  • Plant or transplant trees, shrubs or perennials.  February will give us some good planting weather.  There will also be rain or snow, so there won’t be as much hand watering to be done.
  • Spray those nasty cool season weeds, such as chickweed and oxalis.  They will be showing their ugly heads this time of year.  Killing them now will minimize their chances of spreading and reduce the headaches they cause in the future.  At Willow Ridge we use Bonide Chickweed, Clover and Oxalis Killer.  You can also control moss now with Scotts Moss Control Granules.
  • Apply Dormant Oil Spray this time of year to control a variety of insects, such as scale, aphids and mealy bugs.  This oil also controls overwintering Fungi, such as Powdery Mildew and Rust.   You can use this on fruit trees, shade trees, ornamentals, shrubs, roses and vegetables.

So this February, let’s get ready for Spring rather than worrying about old man Winter.  Check out our blog page to find out more info on all the things I mentioned.  Better yet, come in and talk to one of our professionals today about what to do in February.