April Gardening Tips

For Your Lawnseedlings-300x225

  • Lime and fertilize lawn and apply pre-emergent control to prevent crabgrass.
  • Re-seed areas of winter-killed lawn.

For Your Vegetable Garden

  • Plant peppers, tomatoes, and other warm-weather crops after all danger of frost has passed.
  • Top-dress beds with aged manure.

For Your Flower Beds

  • Prune hybrid tea and floribunda roses.
  • Feed tulip beds with 5-10-5 fertilizer.
  • Clean water gardens before growth begins.
  • Plant new hardy water lilies.
  • Plant hardy annual and perennial flowering plants, such as pansies.
  • Tender annuals can be planted when danger of frost has passed.

For Your Trees and Shrubs

  • Fertilize trees and shrubs.
  • Remember to feed acid-loving plants, such as broadleaf evergreens.
  • Apply dormant oil spray to trees and shrubs if you have not done so already. Do not apply if plants are not dormant or if freezing temperatures are expected.
  • Replace any dead or winter-damaged trees or shrubs.

March Gardening Tips

30015-daffodils_KS111073-300x199Start Cold Crops Inside

If you haven’t done so already, early March is a good time to start seeds of cold crops such as lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower indoors under lights. By April, you’ll have plants that are ready to be transplanted outside a few weeks before the last frost date.

Get a Head Start on Herbs
Begin planning your herb garden and start seeds of basil, parsley, sage,
and thyme indoors. Start your herbs in flats filled with moistened seed-starting mix.

After germination, place the plants under grow lights or by a sunny window and be sure to keep the soil moist. [Read more…]

February Gardening Tips

pruning-300x198February can be a tough month on plants, but with a little effort you can keep your plants healthy and vibrant while planning your spring garden! Follow these easy tips to keep your garden in top shape this February. [Read more…]

January Gardening Tips

snowy tree branches· If you have brought in geraniums for winter color, they must be placed in a window that receives direct sunlight all day and a daytime temperature of 70 to 75 degrees is maintained. Keep in mind geraniums do not like to be over watered.

· Never apply water to houseplants late in the afternoon. The foliage should not be wet when night comes.

· Be sure that all garden refuse that may contain any insects or disease is disposed of in the garbage and not the compost pile.

· After each heavy snowfall, one should tamp the snow around the young fruit trees to protect them from mice, which work under the snow.

· Newly planted evergreens should have the protection of a windbreak or anti-desiccant to protect from moisture loss.

· If the ground is not frozen, newly planted evergreens should again have a thorough soaking of water.

· Make sure that all bird feeding equipment is out and well stocked for the winter months.

· Remember to set out your Christmas tree when the season is over for winter protection for the birds.

October Gardening Tips

Fall_Color_Ornament_Grass_2037451HRFall is a great time to start a compost pile. Start out with brown leaf and add the last few trimmings for nitrogen. Remember to alternate layers. Shred brown leaf to speed decomposition.

Apply an anti-dessicant, such as Wilt-Pruf, to spring or fall planted broadleaf evergreens and specimen conifers. Make sure temperatures are above 50 degrees. Newly planted Arborvitaes could be wrapped in burlap to protect from snow load.

Mulch in spring-planted trees and shrubs. Don’t permit them to get too dry; water them throughly and deeply

Start amaryllis and paperwhite narcissus for holiday blooms. (Allow 5-6 weeks for paperwhites and 12 weeks for amaryllis).

Apply fall lawn fertilizer at this time.

Apply lime to lawns to raise pH. A 50# bag of lime will raise lawn pH about .5 point per 1000 sq ft.
Re-seed areas damaged by grubs with insect resistant seed varieties

August Gardening Tips

sources from The Farmers Almanac
2220_rudbeckia_48166Medium

  • If you have any houseplants sitting directly in the window, make sure the light is filtered or the plant is moved to a site out of direct sunlight. The windowpane intensifies the heat, and you don’t want to scorch your plants.
  • Fertilize your houseplants frequently to ensure vigorous growth.
  • Snip off the old flower clusters from rambler roses to encourage them to bloom all summer.
  • You can sow a fall crop of bush beans now. Plant seeds two inches deep to protect them from the hot Sun. You can sow other vegetable seeds for an autumn yield, too, by planting them just a little deeper than you did in the spring. The best time to plant is after a rain shower.
  • Don’t water your melons at the base of the stems. Doing so can cause rot. Build up a little earth around the stems to keep water away.
  • Once melon vines have set three or four fruits, remove any new blossoms. The remaining fruits will benefit from this, and you will still have plenty.
  • If your trees have any yellow or undersize foliage, start feeding them regularly. Be sure not to overfeed them.
  • Harvest summer squash when it’s young and tender (8 inches).
  • As the weather warms up, do not neglect your watering. Water deeply in the morning and avoid light sprinklings. Water at the roots, not on the foliage.
  • Start herbs such as parsley, dill, and basil in pots for indoor use over the winter.
  • Harvest tomatoes, zucchini, beans, and other fruiting crops frequently to encourage production and avoid attracting pests.
  • Sow vegetable seeds for your fall garden: carrots, beets, turnips, collards, Chinese cabbage, snap beans, radish, kohlrabi, endive, kale, rutabagas, and summer squashes.
  • Set out broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower transplants for your fall garden.
  • Lightly fertilize tomatoes and peppers. Don’t overfertilize.
  • After broccoli head is harvested, the plant continues to grow side shoots.
  • Slugs? Put out shallow dishes of beer; handpick in the early morning. Also, deter with eggshells and other sharp objects.
  • Prevent weeds from seeding; this will mean fewer weeds next year. Pull weeds as they grow and use mulch in your flower beds to prevent them from sprouting.
  • When there is less than an inch of rain in a week, water extra. Water in early morning.
  • Mulching is an important job to keep up with in July. Organic mulches break down over time, so be sure to check the mulch around your plants. Keep a 3- to 4-inch layer of mulch around your plants to retain moisture. Also keep a thick layer of mulch around the roots of trees and shrubs.
  • Water your containers twice a day. Apply a slow-release fertilizer every 2 weeks.
  • If white crust develops in containers, it’s salt buildup; remove and water heavily to flush out salts.
  • Remove tomato suckers to keep the energy focused on the fruit on main branches.
  • If your tomatoes have “blossom end rot,” avoid uneven watering. Mulch will help moderate the fluctuating moisture levels that nature provides.
  • Lightly fertilize long-season plants, such as onions, tomatoes, and peppers, to help encourage growth.
  • Pinch back mint, oregano, and savory to promote bushier growth.
  • Newly planted trees and shrubs need one to two thorough soakings per week and lawns need 1 to 1.5 inches of water per week. Soak, don’t sprinkle.
  • Finish pruning spring-flowering shrubs by mid-month.
  • Annuals and perennials can be planted at any time to fill in blank spaces in the garden.
  • Remove any dead flowers from your annuals and perennials to encourage new growth.
  • Remove any spent flowers from annuals to ensure continued blooming.
  • Garlic and onions are ready when their tops start to bend over. Remove their tops after they’ve dried for a couple weeks and store in a cool place.
  • During these warmer months, raise the mowing height to 2.5 to 3 inches. Water your lawn with 1 inch of water per week to ensure healthy growth.
  • Feed your roses at mid-month to encourage more flowering.
  • Late this month, plant iris and daylilies. Prepare soil now for fall planting.
  • Dig up and divide crowded spring-blooming bulbs whenever they are dormant.
  • Generally, trees and shrubs need deep watering every 10 to 14 days to a depth of 3 inches with a hose at the roots. Do not fertilize, so that they can start preparing for winter dormancy.
  • Remove annual flowers that have finished flowering – plus, any faded flowers.

July Gardening Tips

Adapted from The Farmer’s Almanac

SONY DSCIf you have any houseplants sitting directly in the window, make sure the light is filtered or the plant is moved to a site out of direct sunlight. The windowpane intensifies the heat, and you don’t want to scorch your plants. Water your containers twice a day. Apply a slow-release fertilizer every 2 weeks.

You can sow a fall crop of bush beans now. Plant seeds two inches deep to protect them from the hot Sun. You can sow other vegetable seeds for an autumn yield, too, by planting them just a little deeper than you did in the spring. The best time to plant is after a rain shower.

Don’t water your melons at the base of the stems. Doing so can cause rot. Build up a little earth around the stems to keep water away.

Once melon vines have set three or four fruits, remove any new blossoms. The remaining fruits will benefit from this, and you will still have plenty.

As the weather warms up, do not neglect your watering. Water deeply in the morning and avoid light sprinklings.When there is less than an inch of rain in a week, water extra. Water in early morning. Water at the roots, not on the foliage. Generally, trees and shrubs need deep watering every 10 to 14 days to a depth of 3 inches with a hose at the roots. Do not fertilize, so that they can start preparing for winter dormancy.

Harvest tomatoes, zucchini, beans, and other fruiting crops frequently to encourage production and avoid attracting pests.

Sow vegetable seeds for your fall garden: carrots, beets, turnips, collards, Chinese cabbage, snap beans, radish, kohlrabi, endive, kale, rutabagas, and summer squashes.

Set out broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower transplants for your fall garden.

Lightly fertilize tomatoes and peppers. Don’t overfertilize.

If your tomatoes have “blossom end rot,” avoid uneven watering. Mulch will help moderate the fluctuating moisture levels that nature provides.

Slugs? Put out shallow dishes of beer; handpick in the early morning. Also, deter with a ring of crushed eggshells and other sharp objects around your plants.

Prevent weeds from seeding; this will mean fewer weeds next year. Pull weeds as they grow and use mulch in your flower beds to prevent them from sprouting.

Mulching is an important job to keep up with in July. Organic mulches break down over time, so be sure to check the mulch around your plants. Keep a 3- to 4-inch layer of mulch around your plants to retain moisture. Also keep a thick layer of mulch around the roots of trees and shrubs.

Annuals and perennials can be planted at any time to fill in blank spaces in the garden.

Garlic and onions are ready when their tops start to bend over. Remove their tops after they’ve dried for a couple weeks and store in a cool place.

During these warmer months, raise the mowing height to 2.5 to 3 inches. Water your lawn with 1 inch of water per week to ensure healthy growth.

Feed your roses at mid-month to encourage more flowering.

June Gardening Tips

2261-iStock_6744831Hydrangea-300x200Adapted from The Farmer’s Almanac

– Divide late-summer or autumn-flowering perennials. If necessary, go after phlox and artemisia with a sharp spade or even an ax. If delphiniums need to be divided, remove and replant the new little plants growing around the outside of the clump. Discard the hard old heart.

– Trim climbing roses and attach securely to fences or trellises. Continue fertilization of your rosebushes; liquid fertilizers can be added every 2 weeks. Scatter crushed eggshells in a thick ring around roses to deter slugs.

– Start cucumber, cantaloupe, summer squash, and watermelon seeds indoors. [Read more…]

January Gardening Tips

crocusinsnow-300x187The holidays are over, and Spring is still a little ways ahead, but there is still plenty you can do to take care of existing plants and plan for a beautiful Spring garden. Follow these tips to keep busy throughout the month of January, and see what a difference you can make in your garden even during the cold winter months of the new year! [Read more…]