February Gardening tip
Prune late flowering shrubs and during warmer days keep watch for pests.
Slugs are now active and will decimate new shoots on bulbs and herbaceous. Sprinkling fire ash around these tender plants will stop the slugs without environmental damage. You will need to reapply after rainfall but please be advised you do not want to get large amounts of ash close to the centre of the new shoots as this can scorch. Ideally you want to achieve a doughnut effect.
In my own garden, on my larger herbaceous beds, I do one continuous line of fire ash around the edges. Later on when you are hoeing this will help improve the condition and lift potassium levels in the soil which will help retain moisture through the year.
Fire ash is alkaline and should not be put around azaleas, camellias and other alkaline hating shrubs.
Do not put near your edible plants as pollutants absorbed in the original tree can then be taken up into your crop. Never put fire ash on your allotment.