With temperatures starting to rise and the need to stay at home this month, now is the time to get started on producing your own home compost. Not only will this provide you with nutrient-rich compost for your pots and garden but will also reduce greenhouse gases. Here is how you do it:
Mix equal volume quantities of ‘greens’ and ‘browns’ in one go for quick composting. Greens are grass clippings, vegetable peelings, young plants/weeds. Browns are shredded paper/cardboard, small twigs/branches, dried leaves. In between are crushed eggshells, vacuum contents, tea leaves.
Add mix to compost bin and cover. It will start to warm up. In two weeks turn and mix again, add water if needed, cover. Leave to decompose. It will take about 12 weeks.
As winter recedes spring arrives and there is plenty to be doing indoors as well as in the garden this time of year.
Take control of bamboo and thin out cutting at ground level.
Prune roses to outward facing buds and mulch with manure.
If growing your own fruit and vegetables is on the agenda, now is the time to start sowing seeds such as potatoes, onions, broccoli, leeks and broad beans. Salad such as tomatoes, lettuce and cucumbers can also be sown but for a head start, best to start off indoors.
Invigorate plants in pots by removing 10cm of the old compost and topping up with new fresh compost.
Reduce size of culinary Sage to prevent it getting leggy.
February is the perfect time to take a stroll around some of the many gardens showcasing winter displays of snowdrops, hellebores and crocuses; Easton Lodge, Beth Chatto, Anglesey Abbey, Gibberd Gardens and Marks Hall, amongst many others.
There is still time to plant bare-root hedges before temperatures rise.
While dormant, prune Cotinus, Sambucus and Wisteria shrubs.
Cut back late/autumn flowering Clematis and deciduous ornamental grasses.
Renovate deciduous hedges before birds start nesting.