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Arizona Garden in February

Arizona Garden in February

Low Desert Arizona Garden in February


Keep reading for garden inspiration, a February garden checklist, and a list of vegetables, herbs, and flowers to plant in your low desert Arizona garden in February.

Low desert includes elevations below 3500 ft in the Southwest, such as the Phoenix and Tucson metro areas.


Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. See my disclosure policy for more information.


Arizona garden in February The low desert of Arizona includes cities in and around Phoenix, including Glendale, Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Mesa, Tempe, Chandler, Gilbert, Peoria, Apache Junction, Buckeye, Fountain Hills, Tolleson, Surprise, Sun City, Queen Creek, and Goodyear.

“The February sunshine steeps your boughs and tints the buds and swells the leaves within.” — William C. Bryant


What to Grow and Plant Arizona Garden #arizonagarden #arizona #garden #garden The low desert of Arizona includes cities in and around Phoenix, including Glendale, Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Mesa, Tempe, Chandler, Gilbert, Peoria, Apache Junction, Buckeye, Fountain Hills, Tolleson, Surprise, Sun City, Queen Creek, and Goodyear.

Vegetables growing in the low desert Arizona garden in February


Another name for your low desert Arizona garden in February is “Plant your tomatoes and peppers now” month. Our upcoming summer heat shortens the growing season for these garden favorites.

Arizona Garden in February

Planting as early as possible after the danger of frost has passed gives the greatest chance for a successful season.

Arizona Garden in February

Harvests from fall planting continue throughout February, even as you are planting your spring garden and making plans for your summer garden


Arizona Garden in February Arizona Vegetable Garden Checklist #arizonagarden #gardenchecklist #thismonthinthegarden #garden
  • When the cauliflower head is about 6 inches across, and the buds are tight and unopened, it is time to harvest. Cut off below the head with a sharp knife.
  • Unlike broccoli, cauliflower doesn’t produce side stems after the main head is harvested, so remove the remaining plant from the bed. Cauliflower will store for several weeks in the refrigerator.

Arizona Garden in February Arizona Vegetable Garden Checklist #arizonagarden #gardenchecklist #thismonthinthegarden #garden
  • Harvest cabbage when heads are about the size of a softball and firm. Give cabbages plenty of room to spread out. Keep plants evenly moist. Feed cabbages with compost tea or compost throughout the season.
  • Warmer temperatures mean many brassicas will bolt and flower. Allow them to flower to attract pollinators, or remove to make room for spring planting

Arizona Garden in February Arizona Vegetable Garden Checklist #arizonagarden #gardenchecklist #thismonthinthegarden #garden
  • February in the Arizona garden is all about tomatoes. If we had a mild winter, tomatoes planted back in July are ripening and doing well this month.
  • February is also the best time to plant tomatoes in your Arizona garden. If temperatures are unseasonably cold, wait a bit or cover new plants.
  • Plant seedlings deeply and choose early-season varieties. I recommend Pearson and Early Girl.
  • Look for varieties with 60-90 days to maturity from date of transplant. For more tips read my blog post, “10 Tips for Growing Tomatoes“. 

  • For the best flavor, water celery well the day before picking. Use a knife to harvest a single stalk from the outside of the plant when it reaches the desired height. Harvest stalks continuously as needed.

What to Grow and Plant Arizona Garden #arizonagarden #arizona #garden #garden

Tips for growing flowers in the low desert Arizona garden in February


Arizona Garden in February Arizona Vegetable Garden Checklist #arizonagarden #gardenchecklist #thismonthinthegarden #garden
  • Aphids and other pests may appear this month. They like the cooler temperatures and new growth that happens in February. 
  • Genista caterpillars often appear on Texas Mountain Laurel (pictured here) this month. The caterpillars form loose webbing on the foliage and feed on leaves. Normally there is no significant damage done to the plant. Still, if control is needed, Bt (or Bacillus thuringiensis), available on Amazon, can be used when caterpillars are small and feed on leaves. 

  • Fertilize container annuals every other week this month. For annuals in the ground, fertilize once this month. Water well before and after fertilizing plants.
  • Decide where you are going to plant warm-season annuals. Begin planting seeds outdoors this month.  

Arizona Garden in February Arizona Vegetable Garden Checklist #arizonagarden #gardenchecklist #thismonthinthegarden #garden
  • Cool-season annual flowers planted from September through December, such as stock (pictured here) will bloom through March. As temperatures begin to climb into the 80’s, water annuals more often. 
  • Keep a garden journal of what flowers (in your yard or around the neighborhood) did well this season. 

Perpetual Flower Planting Calendar for Zone 9B

Flowers to Plant Outside & Seeds to Start Indoors Each Month in the Low Desert of Arizona.
PLANTING GUIDE: Each month lists annual flowers and bulbs to plant outside & seeds to start indoors.
BLOOMING GUIDE: Photos show what may be in bloom that month.


What to Grow and Plant Arizona Garden #arizonagarden #arizona #garden #garden

Fruit trees in the low desert Arizona garden in February


Arizona Garden in February Arizona Vegetable Garden Checklist #arizonagarden #gardenchecklist #thismonthinthegarden #garden

Arizona Garden in February Arizona Vegetable Garden Checklist #arizonagarden #gardenchecklist #thismonthinthegarden #garden
  • Prune deciduous fruit trees this month before bud break and blossoms appear if possible. Once blooming finishes, fertilize and water well.

  • Many different varieties of citrus are ripening this month. Best way to test for sweetness? Pick one and try it! Water established citrus once every 2-3 weeks in February. 


How to grow citrus in Arizona #arizonacitrus #citrus

What to Grow and Plant Arizona Garden #arizonagarden #arizona #garden #garden

Herbs in the low desert Arizona garden in February


Cilantro is a cool-weather loving herb. It grows quickly and should be harvested often to keep it from going to seed. Once it does seed and flower, the seed is called coriander. Learn more about how to grow cilantro here

Harvest and preserve cool-season herbs (I use my freeze dryer ). I also love adding chopped herbs and olive oil to herb freezer trays.  


Arizona Garden in February Arizona Vegetable Garden Checklist #arizonagarden #gardenchecklist #thismonthinthegarden #garden

Dill grows as an annual in our cool winters but will begin to bolt and flower as the weather warms. Harvest as needed. Dill is also a great trap crop for tomato hornworms and a host plant for caterpillars. Let it flower to attract pollinators. 

Learn more about how to grow dill in this blogpost


Arizona Garden in February
  • Rosemary is blooming this month. Harvest as needed. Let it flower to attract pollinators. This article shares more information about how to grow rosemary

Low Desert Arizona Garden February To-Do List


compost
  • Amend garden beds with compost
  • Begin spring planting. As long the forecast shows warming weather, plant tomatoes and peppers around the 15th of the month. (See list of other vegetables to plant below)
  • Look at your garden and make a plan for your summer garden. Research different varieties to see which do well in Arizona. A good rule of thumb is to look for short-season crops. Be sure to rotate where you plant each year. 
  • If you didn’t do it in January, start slips for planting sweet potatoes
  • February is a good time to propagate succulents
  • Plant spring flowering annuals this month. (See list below)
  • Plant trees, bushes, and perennials, and be sure to protect new plants from freezing temperatures. 
  • Bare-root roses are in-stock at local nurseries – it’s a great time to plant roses
  • Plant bare-root fruit trees and berries this month. Look for trees that have low chill hours (less than 400), mature early, and self-pollinate. For more information about choosing fruit trees, see my Fruit Planting Guide
  • Wait until mid-to-late February to plant frost-sensitive plants such as lantana and hibiscus.
  • Plant grapes and blackberries this month or next. 
tomatoes
Plant tomatoes after Feb. 15th in your Arizona vegetable garden
  • Trees and shrubs may not need supplemental watering if we get heavy rain. If not, water shrubs and trees no more than once every 14-28 days. Wateruseitwisely.com is a helpful resource for landscape watering guidelines.
  • As temperatures climb into the 80’s, water annuals more often. 
  • Check containers with a moisture meter or ensure the the top inch or so of soil has dried out before watering. 
  • Water established citrus trees once every 2-3 weeks. 
  • Water established fruit trees once every 10-14 days.


Pruning:


Pruning
  • Prune frost-tender plants such as hibiscus and lantana late in the month. When pruning frost-damaged plants, wait and prune after new growth begins.
  • If you didn’t prune roses in January, prune established roses this month. Clean up all fallen leaves and debris from around roses to discourage disease and insects.  
  • Prune dead branches out of trees and shrubs at the end of the month.  
  • Pruning citrus isn’t necessary, but after the danger of frost is past is the time to shape citrus trees a little (if you want to). Try to let the citrus foliage grow to about knee-high. Fruit production is best on the lower two-thirds of the tree, so it’s best not to “skirt” citrus trees. Lower branches also protect the trunk from sun damage. Clean out dead wood. Remove any suckers growing from below the graft.
  • Prune grape vines.
  • If you didn’t prune deciduous fruit trees in January, prune them this month. Prune dead, diseased, broken, and crossing branches and water sprouts (branches shooting straight up from limbs of trees).
Blossom sunset

Fertilizing:



Protect from freezing temperatures (below 32°F.):


  • Have burlap or frost cloth on hand to protect newly-planted citrus, small lemon and lime trees, and other frost-sensitive plants from frost. Our last frost date is normally February 14th, but keep an eye on the weather just in case. 
  • Be aware that container plantings are more susceptible to freezing temperatures than those in the ground.  
  • Read this article or watch this video for more information on protecting plants during freezing temperatures. 

Yard clean-up:


  • Lettuce and other cool-season crops will bolt and flower as the weather heats up. Remove them by cutting off at the roots and add them to compost or allow them to flower to attract pollinators. 
  • As winter vegetables end their life cycle, keep an eye out for garden pests like aphids.  
  • If you overwintered tomatoes and peppers, as new growth begins to appear, trim the plant back and fertilize to encourage growth. If plants do not appear to return as temperatures warm, replace them with new plants in a different garden area.

What to plant in the low desert Arizona garden in February:

February Planting Guides

Before planting:

  • Prepare beds for spring planting – Add compost and other organic matter to the soil.
  • It’s important to have your soil tested at least once a year. A soil test can determine the health of your soil.
  • Add a balanced fertilizer if needed. 

Vegetables, Herbs & Fruit to plant in the low desert in February

Arizona Garden in February

(Click the link to read “How to Grow” articles on my website.)

  • Hyssop (ST)
  • Lavender (T)
  • Lemon Balm (T)
  • Lemon Grass (T)
  • Lemon Verbena (T)
  • Lentil (S)
  • Marjoram (T)
  • Mint (T)
  • Mustard (T)

After February 15th (or after the last spring frost)

SEED, TRANSPLANT, OR BOTH? S = Seed T= Transplant


Vegetable, herb, and fruit seeds to start indoors during February

(Click the link for seed sources.)


Perpetual Herb, Fruit & Vegetable Planting Calendar Zone 9b
  • PLANTING GUIDE: Each month lists vegetables, fruit & herbs to plant outside & seeds to start indoors.
  • HARVEST GUIDE: Photos show what may be ready to harvest that month.
  • Planting dates are for the low desert of Arizona (zone 9b).

Flowers to plant in the low desert in February

Arizona Garden in February

(Click the link to read “How to Grow” articles on my website.)

SEED, TRANSPLANT, OR BOTH? S = Seed T= Transplant


Flower seeds to start indoors in the low desert in February

Arizona Garden in February

(Click the link for seed sources.)


Perpetual Flower Planting Calendar for Zone 9B

Flowers to Plant Outside & Seeds to Start Indoors Each Month in the Low Desert of Arizona.
PLANTING GUIDE: Each month lists annual flowers and bulbs to plant outside & seeds to start indoors.
BLOOMING GUIDE: Photos show what may be in bloom that month.


Visual planting guides for vegetables, herbs, fruits, flowers & vines.


How to grow a vegetable garden in Arizona #arizonagardening #arizonagarden #desertgardening #hotweathergarden #howtogarden

Want more information about gardening in Arizona? This blog post shares seven tips for how to grow a vegetable garden in Arizona


If this post about gardening in Arizona was helpful, please share it:


Patty

Thursday 16th of February 2023

I refer to your site almost daily. Iam into growing winter Vegetable such as lettuce and brocoli. Right now Iam fighting rabbits. I need help finding wood chips in my area, Surprise, and all I find at HD is dyed. Any suggestions?

Angela Judd

Tuesday 21st of February 2023

I get my wood chips at Arizoan Worm Farm.

Kathy

Sunday 27th of February 2022

My tomato plants are very large about 5ft and still have a few small tomatoes. Should I prune them back if so how much do I prune back?

Angela Judd

Tuesday 1st of March 2022

Hi Kathy - If it is a determinate variety, it won't continue producing. If it is an indeterminate variety (which it may be because it is 5 feet tall) you can prune if you would like. If they are still healthy and producing well you can let them continue. If you would like to prune them a bit to keep them smaller you can also do that. Look for signs of new growth and prune back to that point on the branches. You can also prune back any suckers as well.

Melana

Tuesday 1st of February 2022

Good morning! I wanted to give you an "update". I commented on one of your blog posts a few months back regarding my disappointment in trying to garden here in Tucson after moving from Missouri (where I could grow ANYTHING with ease). I said I was about "done" with it and ready to chuck it all in. I wanted to thank you for your encouragement and to tell you that while I'm still having issues (and learning a LOT) I have indeed had success. Fresh salads nightly, tomatoes that are still producing, wonderful greens, lots of sunflowers still blooming and a crazy pumpkin plant that is STILL producing pumpkins! Thanks to you I learned about testing my soil (which was lacking in everything), how to water here and what to grow when. DH even got me a cute little 10'x20' "hoop greenhouse" that all of my Spring garden seedlings are thriving in. I still have a lot to learn and am enjoying every minute....now, if I could just get rid of those aphids! Thank you.

Angela Judd

Friday 4th of February 2022

Melana, this is wonderful news! Congratulations and thank you for the update!