It’s around this time of year that I start getting that urge to head back up to the allotment when it’s not snowing, sleeting or blowing a gale anyway.
If you are anything like me, you might think of making your way back to your plot too.
So with that in mind, here are some allotment jobs you can do in February.
There are quite a few seeds you can get started in February if you have the right set-up.
- Broad beans
These are just a few ideas, and there is much more you can get going. Find out more in my what veg to sow in February guide.
If you have a supply of homemade compost, then now is a great time to spread some of it around your beds.
I like to spread a couple of centimetres of compost on all my beds. I don’t dig it in, I just leave it on the surface and let the worms do the rest.
This adds some life back into my soil just in time for spring and also works as a mulch to kill off any weeds that have popped up over winter.
Warm up Seedbeds
If you want a head start with your seedbeds, start warming them up now.
This is easy to do. Cover the seedbed with plastic sheeting or fleece. This will then warm up the soil in the sun.
Warming up your seed beds like this can allow sowing seeds weeks earlier than you would otherwise be able to.
Another really simple job that you want to be on with by now is chitting your potatoes.
If you are unfamiliar with chitting potatoes, it is just getting them sprouted before you plant them outside.
Place them in a tray or egg box on a windowsill and wait for shoots to appear.
Once your seed potatoes are well-chitted, you can move them out onto the allotment.
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Prune Apple & Pear Trees
This is as late as you want to leave it to prune apple and pear trees. So if you haven’t already pruned them, then do it now.
Soon the sap will start rising again in these fruit trees as they prepare for spring. Once that happens, your pruning window has shut.
Raspberries can be pruned ready for springtime growth. How you prune them will depend on whether they are summer or autumn fruiting types.
Summer raspberries fruit on last year’s growth, so you don’t want to do too much pruning. Just get rid of anything growing out of control, and remove the branches that fruited last year if you haven’t already.
Autumn raspberries which fruit on this year’s growth, can be cut all the way back to the ground, ready for them to burst into life in spring.
Prune Current & Gooseberry Bushes
If you haven’t already, then you can prune these fruit brushes. The same rules that apply to fruit trees also apply here.
Remove any dead or diseased branches. Then think about opening the bush’s centre up a little to allow good airflow.
Also, remove any branches that are rubbing against each other.
Cover rhubarb crowns to force them into an early crop.
This is commonly done by covering them with an upturned terracotta pot, but anything that will keep the crown in darkness will work.