Pacific Northwest

February, 2012
Regional Report

Plant Peas

It's time to plant peas, both ornamental and edible varieties. "Peas by Presidents' Day," goes the old saying. You can also start spinach and other greens later this month, but wait to plant lettuce unless you have a cold frame or other means of protection.

Prune Fruit Tree

Prune fruit trees and grapes in late February or early March after the worst of the winter cold is passed, but before spring growth begins.

Fertilize Evergreens

Mid to late February is the time to fertilize shrubs and evergreens. Use an acid-type rhododendron fertilizer to feed evergreens, conifers, broad leaf evergreens, rhododendrons, azaleas, and camellias. Use an all-purpose fertilizer to feed roses and other deciduous trees and shrubs. If you use a dry granular fertilizer, be sure to water it in thoroughly.

Force Branches into Early Color

If you want a breath of spring, force branches into early bloom. Forsythia, cherry, quince, plum, eastern redbud, lilac, serviceberry and other early flowering trees and shrubs are good candidates. Place the cut branches in water in a bright, sunlit place to trigger early flowering.

Feed Houseplants

When houseplants begin noticing the longer days, they'll start to put out new growth. You can begin feeding them again, but use a dilute 50 percent fertilizer mix until the growth is robust.

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