Ready for February Planting?

This is a great time of year for gardeners in Travis County. Each day brings more light and warmer temperatures. Winter here is a lot like some people’s late spring! February is a key month for planting and now is the time to start making plans.

Start with a list of all the things you’d like to eat this year. Look up the best times to plant (click here) and then read your seed packages to estimate how much space the plants will take up and how long the plants will take to mature.

To maximize the use of small spaces, some gardeners like to sketch out a plan for the whole year. It isn’t too early to think about where you will eventually put in the heat lovers and big plants like tomatoes and squash. Instead of leaving the space empty until the soil warms up consider growing quick crops like radishes, peas and transplants of broccoli or Chinese cabbage in those reserved spaces.

Continue to pay attention to weather forecasts and protect tender plants when necessary. Happily, our last freeze date is approaching. Any time after February 17 is a good bet but if you want some certainty there is only a 10% chance of super cold weather around Spring Break/SxSW in March.

Ever read the back of a seed package and seen something like ‘”start indoors 6-8 weeks before your last freeze date?” This is the time to start plants like tomatoes and peppers inside for transplanting later.

What are your tips for the late winter garden? Leave a comment under the title.