It’s February! Although this is the month when we seem to get our craziest winter weather and worst ice storms, it is also the month when things start to transition from winter into spring.
Many of our resident cavity nesting songbirds will be starting to look for potential nesting spots. Sometime this month we’ll likely get a warm spell when the red maples will bloom. Elms and some of our willows won’t be far behind. Our early breeding salamanders and frogs will also be breeding in the vernal pools this month. Not to mention, the male skunks are on the move and looking for additional mating opportunities. (That’s why you always smell more skunks dead on the roads in February.)
There was a time when I used to take February for granted and count it as “just another winter month,” but not anymore. Now I look forward to February and all the exciting changes it brings related to pollinators, wildlife, and our native plants.
February Gardening Tasks for Pollinators and Wildlife
- Make sure any birdhouses you have up have been cleaned out and are in good working order. Here is an article that I wrote several years ago about cleaning and repairing birdhouses.
- If you are planning to put up any new birdhouses this year, then now is the time to get them up. The birds won’t start nesting in them yet, but they will be checking out and evaluating different options. Here is another article I wrote a while back about choosing the right type of birdhouse.
- Walk around your house, garage, and any other structures paying careful attention to the siding, eaves, soffit vents, and attic vents.
- If there are gaps, openings, or tears in the screens, repair those as soon as possible to reduce the likelihood of critters deciding that your home would make a nice place to raise their babies in this spring.
- Preventive exclusion is the cheapest and most effective manner of dealing with this type of potential human / wildlife conflict.
- Keep an eye out for all the early signs of spring that will begin popping up this month.
Anthony started several nut producing tree and shrub species in the fall. Saplings started like this usually germinate, grow for a bit, go dormant, and can be moved outside to come out of dormancy in the spring. However, sometimes they refuse to go into dormancy and will grow all winter, so you essentially get a year and a half’s worth of growth before they go dormant in the fall after their first full year. Every single one of his saplings decided to take the second route this year.
We now have a small forest of saplings invading the house because we need the space they were growing in so we can start planting all the other seeds that we are growing for the 2022 season. Despite the periodic winter weather we are likely to get over the next month or so, planting season is in full swing for us.
We anticipate having between 60 and 75 species of native wildflowers / herbaceous forbs, vines, shrubs, and trees available this year. Several of these will be brand new species for us to offer, including Anthony’s nut producing trees and shrubs. We are also trying to germinate several harder-to-grow species which take longer to develop and will hopefully be available next year.
My monthly winter deliveries will continue through April.
My February deliveries will be:
- Friday, February 11, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.
- Beaver Trail Park parking lot
- Bowling Green
- Saturday, February 12, 2022 at 10:00 a.m.
- Parking lot of the WKU Small Business Development Center (a.k.a. old mall)
This month I will have:
- Honey from my bees in Barren County
- 13 oz glass jar for $15
- Beeswax from my bees in Barren County
- 1 oz block for $3, tax included
- Gift certificates
- You choose the amount.
- No expiration date.
- Good for any of my products or services.
- Plants Honey Bees Use in the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys
- $32 tax included
- Let me know if you want your book signed
How to Order:
If you are interested in ordering anything, please contact me and let me know what you would like. The deadline to send in your orders is noon on Thursday, February 10.
Busy Bee Nursery and Consulting
Helping you create the pollinator and wildlife habitat of your dreams, so you can enjoy your land and care for the plants and animals that also call your property home.