10 Tips for the February Gardener

house plant-Oregon1. Visit our booth at the 2014 CT Flower and Garden Show, Feb 20-23 in Hartford. Bring ½ cup of soil for a free pH test and your garden questions for free advice.

2. When buying houseplants in winter, be sure to wrap them well for the trip home and, if possible warm up the car. This prevents the foliage from freezing and protects tropicals from drafts.

3. Provide houseplants with increased humidity; mist often or place plants over a tray of moist pebbles.

4. Continue to clean leaves of large and smooth leaved houseplants like dracaena, philodendron, ficus etc.

5. Clean clay pots by soaking overnight in a solution of 1-gallon water and 1 cup of vinegar. Scrub to remove deposits. Repeat if necessary.

6. Avoid the use of sodium salts to melt snow, as it is toxic to most plants. Use sawdust, sand or cat litter instead.

7. Keep bird feeders filled throughout winter.

8. Check on winter plant protection; add mulch and adjust plant stakes as necessary.

9. Check your stored plants such as fuchsias and geraniums. Usually they need a light watering once a week depending on their storage temperature.

10. If you grow currants, remove all trunks that are over 3 years old on a mild day.