Last Updated on: 25th February 2024, 08:05 am
February: It’s time to stock up on your gardening and lawn care supplies before the warmer weather.
February is the perfect time for gardeners and lawn care enthusiasts in zones 7b and 8a of North Carolina to stock up on essential supplies for the upcoming gardening season. By planning and ordering the right tools and materials, you can ensure a smooth and successful start to your gardening journey.
Here’s a detailed guide on what to order, complete with Amazon links for easy purchasing:
Invest in Seeds and Pre-Chilled Bulbs in February
When selecting seeds to purchase in February, focus on varieties that benefit from an early start, especially those with a longer growing season or that can tolerate cooler spring temperatures.
- Tomatoes: Start these indoors as they have a more extended growing season. Choose varieties like ‘Brandywine’ for heirlooms or ‘Celebrity’ for disease resistance. Buy Tomato Seeds
- Peppers: Like tomatoes, peppers need a longer growing season. Varieties such as ‘California Wonder’ (bell pepper) and ‘Jalapeño’ are popular. Buy Pepper Seeds
- Eggplants: Another warm-season crop that benefits from an early start. Try ‘Black Beauty’ for a classic choice. Buy Eggplant Seeds
- Leafy Greens: Spinach, lettuce, and kale can be started early as they can tolerate cooler weather. They are ideal for a continuous harvest. Buy Leafy Green Seeds
- Herbs: Start herbs like basil, cilantro, and parsley indoors. They are essential for your kitchen garden and can be transplanted outside when the weather warms. Buy Herb Seeds
- Flowers: Consider starting some annual flowers indoors, like marigolds or petunias. They’ll add color to your garden earlier in the season. Buy Flower Seeds
Pre-chilled bulbs have been exposed to cold temperatures, mimicking winter conditions. This chilling period is necessary for many spring-blooming bulbs to break dormancy and initiate flowering. Since zones 7b and 8a have milder winters, some bulbs may not get enough natural chilling to perform their best. That’s where pre-chilled bulbs come in handy.
- Tulips: A classic spring flower, tulips require a chilling period to bloom. Look for varieties like ‘Queen of Night’ (a deep purple) or ‘Golden Apeldoorn’ (bright yellow). Buy Pre-Chilled Tulip Bulbs
- Daffodils: These bulb flowers are hardy and often do well, but pre-chilled bulbs ensure a robust bloom. Varieties like ‘Dutch Master’ or ‘Mount Hood’ are excellent choices. Buy Pre-Chilled Daffodil Bulbs
- Hyacinths: Known for their fragrance and vibrant colors, try ‘Blue Jacket’ or ‘Pink Pearl’ for a splash of color.
- Crocuses: These early bloomers can bring the first sign of spring to your garden. Varieties like ‘Giant Mixed’ offer a range of colors.
By selecting these specific seeds and pre-chilled bulbs, you set yourself up for a smooth start when the warmer weather arrives. Starting seeds like tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants early gives them the head start they need for a complete and productive growing season. Meanwhile, pre-chilled bulbs are a smart choice for ensuring vibrant and timely blooms in your spring garden, especially in the milder climates of zones 7b and 8a.
Purchase Any Necessary Gardening Tools in February
By ensuring your existing tools are well-maintained and investing in new, quality tools, you’ll make your gardening work more manageable and contribute positively to your garden’s overall health and success.
Maintaining your gardening tools is about prolonging their life and ensuring your plants’ health and success. Sharp, well-maintained tools make cleaner cuts, reducing the risk of plant diseases and damage.
- Pruners and Shears: Dull blades can crush plant tissues instead of cutting them cleanly, harming plants and leaving them vulnerable to disease. A good tool sharpening kit can keep your pruners and shears in top condition. Buy Tool Sharpening Kit
- Cleaning and Oiling: Regular cleaning and oiling of tools prevent rust and ensure smooth operation. Consider a maintenance kit with oil and cleaning supplies.
- Tool Storage: Proper storage of tools can significantly extend their life. Look for tool organizers or storage spaces to keep your tools dry and organized. Buy Tool Storage Solutions
Investing in New Tools:
Investing in new, high-quality tools can make gardening more efficient and enjoyable. Quality tools are designed to last longer and provide better results, leading to a healthier garden.
- Garden Hose: A durable garden hose with adjustable settings can ensure that you provide your plants the right amount of water, promoting healthy growth. Buy Garden Hose
- Ergonomic Tools: Ergonomic spades, hoes, and rakes reduce strain on your body, allowing you to work more efficiently and comfortably in the garden.
- Wheelbarrow: A sturdy wheelbarrow is essential for transporting soil, compost, and other materials around your garden, minimizing the disturbance to your plants and soil structure. Buy Wheelbarrow
- Soil Testing Kit: Healthy plants start with healthy soil. A soil testing kit can help you understand your soil’s needs, leading to better plant health and growth. Buy Soil Testing Kit
Quality tools lead to efficient work, less plant stress, and a thriving garden.
Buy Fertilizers, Soil Amendments, and Mulch in February
By carefully selecting and applying the right fertilizers, soil amendments, and mulch, you can create a fertile and healthy environment for your plants. Organic matter like compost and worm castings enriches the soil, while specialized fertilizers ensure each plant gets the nutrients it needs.
Fertilizers and Soil Amendments:
The right fertilizers and soil amendments are crucial for nurturing healthy, productive plants. They provide essential nutrients and improve soil structure, fostering an ideal growing environment.
- Worm Castings: Worm castings are an excellent soil amendment known for improving soil aeration and drainage while providing a rich nutrient source. They are essentially worm manure and are considered a practical, nutrient-rich form of compost. Buy Worm Castings
- Specialized Fertilizers:
- Plant-Specific Formulations: Different plants have different nutritional needs. Fertilizers formulated for plants like roses or vegetables can significantly boost their growth and health.
- Slow-Release Options: Consider slow-release fertilizers for a steady supply of nutrients over time, reducing the risk of over-fertilization and promoting consistent plant growth.
Mulch is not just about weed control and moisture retention; it also plays a vital role in soil health and temperature regulation.
- Organic Mulch:
- Straw or Bark Chips: These organic mulches help retain soil moisture, and suppress weeds, and as they decompose, they add organic matter back into the soil, improving its quality. Buy Organic Mulch
- Benefits of Mulching: Mulching helps maintain an even soil temperature, protects soil from erosion, and can reduce the spread of soil-borne diseases. It also provides a habitat for beneficial insects and earthworms.
Mulching in March further enhances soil conditions, making your garden more resilient and productive. Grab the materials in February so they’re ready for application.
Pest and Disease Control Supplies and Plant Supports
Equipping your garden with the right pest and disease control supplies and plant supports can ensure that your plants grow healthy and strong.
Pest and Disease Control Supplies:
Effective pest and disease management is crucial for maintaining a healthy garden. The right supplies can help you prevent and tackle issues before they become significant problems.
- Eco-Friendly Pest Control:
- Neem Oil: An organic, versatile pest control solution that can deal with various garden pests and diseases. It’s safe for beneficial insects and doesn’t harm pets or humans. Buy Neem Oil
- Insecticidal Soaps: These are effective against soft-bodied pests like aphids and spider mites and are less harmful to beneficial insects. Buy Insecticidal Soap
- Disease-Resistant Plant Varieties: Opt for plant varieties known for their resistance to common diseases. This proactive approach can significantly reduce the need for chemical treatments.
- Barriers and Traps:
Order these materials in February to ensure you have them on hand once the warm temperature – and the insects – return for the long warm season.
Proper support is essential for the healthy growth of certain plants, especially those that climb or produce heavy fruits.
- Stakes and Trellises:
- Tomato Cages support tomato plants, keeping them upright and promoting better air circulation. Buy Tomato Cages
- Trellises: Ideal for climbing plants like cucumbers, peas, and certain flowers. Trellises help maximize garden space and keep plants off the ground, reducing disease exposure. Buy Trellises
- Support Accessories:
- Plant Ties and Soft Twine: These are gentle on plants and valuable for tying plants to supports without damaging them. AVOID METAL TIES: Wire or metal ties can be too rigid and may cut into the plant stems as they grow, potentially causing significant damage or even girdling the plant.
- Stakes: Wooden or bamboo stakes are versatile and can be used for various plants.
Eco-friendly pest control methods protect your garden’s ecosystem, while proper plant supports help manage plant growth and health effectively.
The Takeaway: February is the Best Time to Order Your Lawn and Garden Supplies
As we wrap up our comprehensive guide, it’s clear that February stands out as the ideal month for gardeners in zones 7b and 8a of North Carolina to get a head start on their lawn and garden preparations. This month offers the perfect opportunity to order all the necessary supplies, from seeds and bulbs to tools and fertilizers, ensuring you’re well-prepared for the upcoming gardening season:
- Early Planning: By ordering your supplies in February, you’re setting the stage for a successful and stress-free gardening season. It’s the time to think ahead, make informed choices, and get your hands on the best products before the rush of the spring season.
- Seasonal Advantage: With the right tools and materials at your disposal early on, you can take full advantage of the early spring weather, giving your plants the best possible start.
Tayloe’s Lawn Care Services: Your Year-Round Gardening Partner
- Expert Assistance: If you need professional lawn or garden help, remember that Tayloe’s Lawn Care Services is just a phone call away at 252.287.3376. Our team can provide expert advice and assistance, no matter the season.
- Winter Services: While our mowers are winterized, we remain active in February, offering garden bed cleanouts, shrub and hedge trimming, and routine tree care to keep your outdoor space in top condition.
- Stay Connected: For more gardening tips, updates, and content, don’t forget to follow Tayloe’s Lawn Care Services on Facebook. We’re here to help you every step of the way, ensuring your lawn and garden thrive throughout the year.
February is not just a time of waiting for spring; it’s a time of active preparation. By ordering your supplies now and calling us if you need help, you will be well on your way to a lush, vibrant, and healthy lawn and garden.
- Deborah Tayloe is the CEO and co-founder of Tayloe's Lawn Care Services, LLC. She has a B.S.Ed and holds certificates in soil and water management and herbology from accredited programs.
- Herb GardenFebruary 20, 2024Catnip Versus Catmint: They’re not the same herb
- Lawn CareFebruary 8, 2024February is the best time to order lawn and garden supplies
- Lawn CareJanuary 31, 2024Mint Comparison Guide: Peppermint, spearmint, and wintergreen
- BirdsJanuary 25, 2024Eastern Bluebird: North American songbirds in your backyard