Jessica Damiano's award-winning garden blog gets to the root of things.
This week in the garden
This weather makes it easy to take care of all the February garden chores. But it looks like we might be getting a storm on Sunday, so get out there before then.
The first thing you should do is assess your trees and shrubs. February is pruning time. If you need to know which plants to prune and how it should be done, check my complete guide to pruning trees and shrubs.
Then bring in some of the branches you cut off -- a few stems of forsythia, pear, pussy willow or quince -- and stick them in a vase of water. They'll bloom sooner than those in the garden and bring you an early taste of spring indoors.
If you're pruning away diseased rose canes, be sure to disinfect pruners between cuts with a 10-percent bleach solution, or disinfectant spray, or the pathogen will spread to your other plants.
It's also time to plant lavender and thyme seeds for transplanting outdoors in spring. Put them on a sunny windowsill.
Finally, keep an eye out for yellow winter aconites and white snowdrops in the garden; they should be blooming anytime now. My pansies have been blooming on and off all winter. What about yours?