15 Unexpected Plants to Grow in February


For those with hardiness zones ranging from 7 to 10, it's smart to start germinating perennial flowers such as poppies in February for vibrant spring bloom. Poppies can handle partial sun to full sun, but for the most fruitful results, sow the seeds in a spot that gets a solid 6 hours of sunlight. Also, plan to water the seedlings at least once a week to ensure the soil is moist.


Combat the cold days of winter by sowing the seeds of a few different types of chilies. It's smart to start these spicy numbers indoors as they love warm weather but have a long growing season. Put on a pair of gloves and plant sow the seeds directly into a seedling tray with warm, moist soil around 12 weeks before the last frost. The chili seedlings can then easily be transplanted into the garden or containers about a week after the last frost of the season.


Gladiolus corms can be planted in areas that experience a frost-free winter as early as February. Thoroughly water the corms before planting them about 4-inches deep in well-drained soil. It's pertinent to remove any faded and dead flowers to ensure continuous blooms throughout the spring season.


In regions without frost at this time of year, such as Florida, February is a great time to plant cold-hardy annuals outside. The key is to choose a variety like pansy that can take a light frost, should temperatures drop

Sweet Pea

Another cold-hardy annual that can stand up to late winter in warm regions is sweet pea, a fragrant favorite in cottage-style gardens. If unseasonably cold weather is forecast after sweet peas have been planted, cover with a light sheet (not plastic) until temperatures warm again.

Dusty Miller

Beloved for its silvery-sage foliage, dusty miller is another cold-hardy annual that can be planted in February in mild climates. (Although grown as an annual in most zones, dusty miller is a perennial that may return in USDA plant hardiness zones 8 through 10.) If cold weather threatens after planted, water soil surrounding plants thoroughly as wet soil will hold heat better than dry soil.


These classic window box beauties can be grown inside starting in February. Although they will tolerate moderate light, they need lots of light for blooming. For best results, hang grow lights just a few inches over the tops of your plants and keep the grow lights on for 12 to 14 hours a day.


Feburary is also a great time to grow begonias from seed inside. One way to faciliate germination: use a heat mat underneath your plants to keep the soil warm. Do not transplant your begonias outside until after all threat of frost has passed.


This edible is another good option for starting from seed inside during the winter. Once seedlings have sprouted up and are growing, feed them with a continuous-release plant food, then be sure to wait to transplant outdoors until all threat of frost has passed.


In the South and West, you can plant cold-weather edibles like radishes at the end of February. A general rule of thumb is to sow radish seeds in the garden two to three weeks before the last frost.

Swiss Chard

Leafy greens like Swiss chard can also be planted in February in warmer regions. Try this simple test to make sure your soil is ready for planting: squeeze a handful and if it forms a tight ball, you may want to hold off. Soil is ready when it flakes away when rubbed between two fingers.


In warmer regions such as Florida, summer bulbs like agapanthus can be planted during February. Plant them in a spot where they will receive at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight.


Another summer-blooming bulb to plant in February: lilies. Plant them in a sunny spot in well-drained soil. (If you have wet soil, consider planting lily bulbs in a container instead.)


February is also a great time to sow seed for herbs inside that will be transplanted outside after the last frost. Take basil, which can germinate inside in about a week. Place pots with basil seeds in a sunny windowsill to ensure they get enought light.


Another tasty and fragrant herb to plant inside in Feburary is thyme. For best results, place thyme pots in a window with southern- or western-facing window where they will receive at least six hours of sunlight.

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