February Gardening Tips
It’s time to plan your lawn care for this year. Come in to ask us about the ferti•lome 5-Step Do-It-Yourself Lawn Care Program with a year’s worth of products specifically suited for the needs of your lawn. When you buy the program, you’ll save money and be sure you are applying the right product at the right time.
- The standard first step for cool-season lawns like fescue, bluegrass or rye, is ferti•lome For All Seasons II Lawn Food Plus Crabgrass & Weed Preventer, a long-lasting pre-emergent which can be applied in the winter or early spring months for season-long control of grassy weeds while it feeds your lawn. This product allows for more freedom in timing the first application.
- For warm-season grasses like bermuda, buffalo and zoysia, Hi-Yield Turf and Ornamental Weed & Grass Stopper as a first step in spring will prevent crabgrass without the unneeded fertilizer.
- If you need to seed this spring, we can substitute ferti•lome New Lawn Starter as the first application.
If you’re not sure what you need, come in and let us help you design a full year of lawn care specifically for your grass and conditions. The 5-Step Do-It-Yourself Lawn Care Program is tailored to your pocketbook and your lawn’s needs. We’ll even loan you a spreader when it’s time to apply. We also offer delivery of your Lawn Care Program to your door for only $20 more (Wichita Metro area). See store for more details.
Now you can also order your program online at www.johnsonsgarden.com and pick up in-store!
Feed the Birds
Bird feeders are a great way to bring wildlife up close. When our outdoor activities are limited by weather we can watch activity abound at feeders and bird baths. A simple platform feeder stocked with black oil sunflower seed or Johnson’s Gardener’s Choice is universally appealing to many desirable birds as well as squirrels. There are many other specialty feeders and seeds to help you attract woodpeckers,
finches and chickadees, as well as feeders to deter squirrels or specifically feed squirrels, depending on your preference.
All wildlife is drawn to unfrozen water in winter when water is sometimes scarce. You can accomplish this by using a bird bath de-icer to keep water thawed and available.
Be sure to get new houses up, or clean out your old house to be ready for the martin scouts when they arrive in early to mid March. Monitor the birds’ progress towards Kansas by visiting the purple martin
web site at www.purplemartin.org.
Winter Tree Care
Late this winter or early spring, fertilize trees with ferti•lome Tree & Shrub Food to encourage good new growth this spring. A preventative application of ferti•lome Tree & Shrub Systemic Insect Drench might
also be a good idea for borer-susceptible trees like birch, maple and cottonwood. If we haven’t had snow or other moisture, be sure to water.
Vegetable plants that can be planted outdoors in March and early April should be started indoors. Start broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower and onions from seed now. Sow tomato and pepper seeds in late February to plant outdoors the first of May.
Some annual flowers that need an eight week head start are ageratum, seed geraniums, begonias, impatiens, lobelia, petunias, rose moss, verbena and vinca. Most perennials will also need to be started
Seed Starting Tips:
• Use a sterile soilless seed starting medium like ferti•lome Seed & Cutting Mix.
• Keep soil moist. After the initial watering, mist the soil to keep it damp without dislodging the seeds.
• A dome or plastic bag over the plant flat will help with soil moisture and maintain humidity.
• A seedling heat mat will promote better and quicker germination by providing bottom warmth.
• Once the seedlings are up, fertilize once a week with a 1/4 strength solution of ferti•lome Blooming and Rooting Plant Food.
Once plants have sprouted, remove the dome and heat mat. For stocky, healthier plants, give them more light and cooler temperatures. If you don’t have enough natural sunlight, supplement with grow
lights. A week or ten days before you want to plant them outside, start hardening them off. This is done by putting seedlings outdoors in a protected spot during the day, providing the weather isn’t too cold, or
using a cold frame structure to shelter them. We have a great selection of seeds and starting supplies so you can get a jump on spring.