The February full moon, the Snow Moon, was last week.
By historical averages, our last freeze of the winter should occur this week. That means it is time to plant for spring.
This winter has been quite warm and cool season vegetables like mustards, broccoli and lettuce are bolting or going from a vegetative to a flowering phase. Since cool season flowers and vegetables are having a short season, it is time to consider installing warm season crops.
After next week, we typically will not see any sustained cold fronts. If we do get a freeze, it is usually an overnight event with a quite warm up the following day. We may also have additional frost-laden mornings, so if you do plant early, have items at hand to protect your newly planted annual plants.
One reason why you may want to get a jump on planting is that the mild winter probably had minimal affects on pests in the garden. When pest populations start the year with high numbers they reach damaging levels earlier than normal. This is something that those of you trying to grow organically need to be cognizant of.
One item to look for at nurseries are blooming camellia and azalea bushes. Purchasing these plants while in bloom assures you of the flower type you are looking for. It can be quite frustrating to buy a mislabeled plant only to find out a year later it is not what you wanted.
Dormant fruit trees will become available in the market place. If you are looking for apple, peach, pear or plum trees, especially bare-root ones, you need to get them planted early before the heat sets in.
Spring is just around the corner. Get ready to go shopping for the latest and greatest new horticultural items at the garden center.