Veggie Garden Preparation: February Chores

by Tammy Taylor~

 

Well spring is coming y’all, but just because it’s still cold outside doesn’t mean there’s not lots to be done to prepare for a successful garden.  Gardeners know that gardening starts way before planting time, and during the cold months of winter is when I’m able to start making plans and taking steps to assure a bountiful harvest this year.  Come on, let’s see what we’re up to…

FEBRUARY GARDEN CHORES: Gardening starts way before planting time. During the winter months I'm able to take steps to assure a bountiful harvest #TaylorMadeHomestead

Here in NE Texas I’m in planting zone 8 so I typically plant my garden around Easter weekend each year when the danger of frost is typically gone for our area.  But while the cold winter wind blows I’ve been busy mapping out what I’m going to plant this year.  Soon I’ll be bringing out my planting supplies and dropping some heirloom seeds into peat pots to get a jump start on the gardening season using what I call my ‘Indoor Greenhouse’.

FEBRUARY GARDEN CHORES: Gardening starts way before planting time. During the winter months I'm able to take steps to assure a bountiful harvest #TaylorMadeHomestead

In the meantime RancherMan is busy preparing the garden area outside. We’re planning to change things up in our veggie garden this year.  Although this area is fenced in, we’ll split it with a fence & add a coop so we can integrate part of this area into our chicken headquarters.  They’ll be able to keep the bermuda grass scratched away from entering from that side, and they’ll be able to eat all the grasshoppers that attempt to infiltrate my garden.  Win/win on both accounts!  So several weeks ago RancherMan pulled up all the raised beds and we’ve been tilling the area we’ll be planting – leaving the chicken run grassy for now.  Last month RancherMan tilled the section to be planted so that the tiller would dig up the dang bermuda grass runners.  He gave it a week or so and tilled it again to chop everything up finely.

But now that we’re getting closer to planting time he wants to run the tiller a few more times to get those bermuda grass runners chopped & dead.  DANGIT we’re going to get  rid of this bermuda grass this year, come what may!!  But as a bonus, my sister recently came for a visit and brought a very exciting surprise for me:  Three MAMMOTH lawn bags filled with leaves!  (thank you sister!)

FEBRUARY GARDEN CHORES: Gardening starts way before planting time. During the winter months I'm able to take steps to assure a bountiful harvest #TaylorMadeHomestead

So RancherMan took advantage of an unseasonably warm February day & brought out the tiller to till across the garden area again, of course with a light touch to only go very shallowly.  We don’t want to go down too deep, heck we’d just be bringing up weed seeds to sprout!  After he ran the tiller across the ground I brought out two of the three huge bags of leaves and we spread them out across the ground, and he shallowly tilled again to mix the leaves in with the dirt.  I’m saving that last bag of leaves, we’ll either go ahead & till ’em in next time or even better – I’d LOVE to save them to use as mulch once I plant.  We’ll see…

FEBRUARY GARDEN CHORES: Gardening starts way before planting time. During the winter months I'm able to take steps to assure a bountiful harvest #TaylorMadeHomesteadSo now I’m busying myself with planting those seeds indoors and dreaming of warmer weather.  How about you – how do you placate yourself about spring gardening when it’s still cold outside?

~TMH~

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18 thoughts on “Veggie Garden Preparation: February Chores

  1. Nina Conrad

    Great tips! I just finished with the preparation of my the seed starters and I found some more ideas for my garden. Thanks for the helpful information you’ve shared. Definitely recommending your post to some friends too. Greets!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Awesome Nina – I’m so anxious to get things into the soil! Thanks for stopping by today. ~TMH~

      Reply
  2. Rosemary @anitalianinmykitchen.com

    Nothing better then getting ready for veggie season. Thanks for sharing at the Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      I’ll be planting my indoor greenhouse this week Rosemary. I can’t wait to get into the garden! ~TMH~

      Reply
  3. Courtney @The Kitchen Garten

    This is my first time stopping by, and I’m so glad I found your site. I absolutely love to garden, and though I live in the city, I’m using every spare inch I have. I live in zone 7, so I’m just going to start this weekend by putting some compost in the beds to get them ready. I’m excited to see what you plant!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      How exciting Courtney, I know you’re ready to get started! I’ll be planting up my indoor greenhouse this coming week so I’ll have seedlings to drop in the soil when the time comes. OMGosh I can’t wait until planting time! ~TMH~

      Reply
  4. Rebecca

    I think February is the most exciting and the most frustrating month for gardening. Winter is ending, and I’m ready to get started outside. Planning what I’m going to do this year is my favorite part of gardening. Good luck with getting rid of your bermuda grass and your new chicken.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Yes Rebecca, me too! The garden area’s looking great, I’m really hopping that the addition of the chicken’s run will be a symbiotic garden/fowl relationship! ~TMH~

      Reply
  5. Connie

    Hi Tammy, this is my first visit . . . I love your farm and gardening is my new thing. I’m seventy years young and this year will be my third year to have a garden. Until three years ago we lived in a home in one of those communities where the houses are 15 feet apart and by 2:00 in the afternoon our backyard was in the shade. Two years ago this April we bought an old house on the outskirts of town setting on an acre of land. It feels huge to us and I have had so much fun gardening. I’ve even had surplus, where I have put out free boxes by the road and enjoyed watching people stop and take home produce 🙂 Last fall my husband asked if I would make him a big warm Christmas themed quilt for Christmas, then he asked want I would like. So, since I was making his gift I ask him to build me a potting shed. So, that is where I will be this spring, while waiting for warm weather. Our time to plant outside around here is the middle of May. I am so delighted to have found your blog and will be adding you to my sidebar favorites list. Your new blogging sister, Connie 🙂

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      OMGosh Connie – how exciting!! Love your new (old) house location & that you’re finally able to garden. And I absolutely love your ‘free produce’ box that you’re sharing with those around you. Love, love, LOVE! I’m so happy you’ve stopped by, and so tremendously happy to get to meet my new blogging sister. (hugs) ~TMH~

      Reply
  6. Sherry in Texas

    I envy you a little. But I’m glad you have such a great place! I’m planning my patio garden. Say a little prayer for me will ya! Last year I had a hard time with just flowers So its a real plunge to attempt a few veggies. I enjoyed your post. I always enjoy my visiting. Thanks for linking at The Art Of Homemaking!

    Reply
  7. ColleenB.~Texas

    Couldn’t have asked for better weather for working outside. I sure am enjoying it. With the nice warm temperatures the way they are; your seeds will get a nice jump start.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Yes ma’am Colleen. And the forecast looks like we’ll be spoiled with unseasonably warm weather for quite a few days. LOVE IT! ~TMH~

      Reply
  8. Cynthia D

    I live in zone 7 and I have started some cabbage and broccoli in the house. I plant in potting soil that I cook in the microwave and then put in paper cups. I have a heat mat that helps. I plant the cabbage and broccoli out in April, but don’t plant transplants like tomatoes and peppers until after Mother’s Day. Today we have had a high of 24 degrees and I see the picture of your husband in short sleeves. What a difference! We usually have some warm dry weather about this time of the year so we can turn our planting beds, but not so far. We have frozen puddles left from the last storm and snow is called for tomorrow. We do have Bermuda grass here and we have raised beds that so far I have kept it out of, so knock on wood.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Here in NE Texas we’ve been surprised at the unseasonably warm February temps we’ve enjoyed Cynthia, many days only require short sleeves or maybe a very light jacket. I was just telling RancherMan that I don’t think I’ve even worn a winter sweater yet this year! ~TMH~

      Reply
  9. Margy

    Bermuda grass is a tenacious plant. Having a tiller must really help working up the soil. Using pots and raised beds I don’t have as much trouble with weeds, but it does limit my growing space. I guess there are trade-offs. – Margy

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      We’re certainly hoping so Margy. We’re changing a few things in the garden this year such as adding the chicken run to a section of the garden and pulling down our raised beds and tilling into planting rows instead. In the past the bermuda grass runners have sneaked beneath the boards of my raised beds where I was forced to throw my hands up in defeat since the runners intentionally break if you try to pull them and digging them in the concrete-hard Texas summer soil was hopeless. We’d contemplated ripping up our lower raised beds and replacing them with much higher raised beds to attempt to thwart the dang runners but we figured we’d try this first since it was the path of least resistance. Fingers crossed! ~TMH~

      Reply

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