(Note: Some tasks from last month can carry over into this month due to the closeness in the season. If you have already performed any of these tasks, enjoy the feeling of having that task complete!)
- You can still put down Step 2 of Evergreen’s 4-Step Lawn Care Program utilizing Fertilome “Weed & Feed”, this is a broadleaf weed killer and fertilizer for those pesky weeds and summer lawn health. Click here for a link to Evergreen’s 4 Step DIY lawncare program. Spot spraying can also be done. We suggest one keeping a small 1-2 gallon pump spray dedicated to a selective lawn herbicide, such as Fertilome Weed Out, for spot spraying selective weeds on a selective basis.
- Bermuda Grass will be sprouting this month. You can use HiYield Triclopyr Ester on emerging Bermuda Grass to suppress it’s growth within the lawn. Ask an associate about application rates & frequency.
- During dry spells, water the lawn thoroughly and deeply. This encourage deep root growth and formation and helps the lawn stay hydrated.
- Most homeowners or mowing companies mow local fescue lawns too short at a 2” height. This is very stressful to lawns as the preferred mowing height should be 3-4”. Mowing too short will greatly affect the health and appearance of the lawn and does not aid in lessening your mowing interval.
TREES & SHRUBS
- Fertilizing is most important in the spring when trees and shrubs have metabolism’s requiring nutrients to support their foliage growth and flowering needs. For general landscapes outdoors, we suggest utilizing granular fertilizers as the base of your fertilizer program. Liquid or water soluble fertilizers can be used to supplement newly planted shrubs or those that may be just weaker than normal. Talk to our associates about the proper fertilizes needed for your landscape.
- Azaleas, Rhododendron, & Camellia are heavy and shallow feeders that really appreciate lighting more frequent fertilizer applications utilizing Fertilome Azalea, Rhododedron, Camellia Food. We suggest monthly applications during the spring and summer growing season following their flowering.
- For Roses, Azaleas, Hemlocks, Holly, and many forms of deciduous shrubs, insects such as Aphids, Lacebug, Hemlock Wooly Adelgid, soft scales, and more begin to infest and graze on the foliage and internal fluids of these shrubs. A great and easy to apply soil drench insecticide, Fertilome Tree & Shrub Insecticide Drench, is a system insecticide that is applied to the soil and root area and taken up by the shrub for a year long of insect control. No spraying or difficult to apply methods. Simply follow the instructions for the shrub or tree size and blend with a bit of water to apply to the soil and root area.
- If you haven’t mulched in at least a year, check your mulch depth and quality. We recommend a 3-4″ mulch layer to help plants retain moisture in the summer heat and suppress weed growth, to hold in moisture, and to enhance the appearance of your landscape.
- Weed control can be one of the easiest or often one of the most dreaded forms of gardening tasks for the general landscape. A weed infested landscape can have a severe affect on the appearance of even the best looking landscapes or gardens. The best advice we can give is to never allow it get out of hand. Allowing weeds to get larger and unsightly also creates a strong production of weed roots and seeds to continue to spread their existence. Spot spraying on regular intervals is a proven trick to keep weeds at bay. Purchase and dedicate a small, easy to carry, 1-2 gallon pump compression sprayer to a non selective herbicide such as Hi-Yield Kill-Z-All Weed killer. Grabbing this sprayer with this liquid herbicide solution and walking thru the gardens and spot spraying small weeds every 1-2 weeks is a proven way to never let them get too large. Depending on the size of your landscape, often this can be accomplished by 15 – 30 minute intervals rarely even having to even pulled the killed weeds minimizing hours and hours of weed pulling tasks.
- Check and re-fill birdbaths frequently. Standing watering is a great mosquito breeding ground!
- Watch for any pest or disease problems in veggie plants. Give one of our experts a call if you notice anything that seems amiss on the plant or fruit production. We suggest preventatively spraying Cucumber/Squash/Zucchini vines once they starting “running” to prevent pets such as Squash Borer and Cucumber beetles.
- You can continue to plant Sweet Potatoes
- Fertilize your garden plants with a fertilizer of your choice
- Water in the morning. Avoid watering the hot afternoon and the evening (evening watering can encourage fungal/mildew issues)
- Provide extra tie or stake support for vining plants such as Honeysuckle or Clematis as they continue to grow new shoots and tendrils.
- Remove any faded blooms or stalks. This helps prolong blooming and encourages more new blooms to appear while maintaining a neat appearance.
- Fertilize with Fertilome Gardener’s Special.
FLOWER BEDS & CONTAINERS
- Don’t forget to fertilize flowering containers every other week with Fertilome 20-20-20
- Continue planting any summer flowers – don’t forget that most summer flowers will still bloom through October (when we usually get our first hard frost)
- Don’t let containers dry out. Most container flowers in a sunny area need to be watered daily to keep from drying out. Container flowers in the shade can be watered less frequently. If you don’t want to water frequently, consider a flower such as Lantana which loves hot & dry weather. We recommend watering in the morning.
Waking up the water garden is a common things during the spring months. Often suppliers, such as Evergreen of JC, of aquatic plants and pond hardy fish will acquire their first shipments from mid April to mid May. Adding new plants and fish are among those things often done in spring but can be done at any time of the year from Spring thru fall.
- If you haven’t already – it’s time to add tropical floating water plants such as Water Hyacinths, Water Lettuce, etc. These tropical floaters spread and multiple quickly but can’t tolerate our cooler frosts and cooler water temps prior to May. Floating aquatic plants provide great blockage of sun light assisting in reduction of algae and do also play an important role their role of an ecological balance.
- Water garden pumps, filters, and UV lights need to be inspected and evaluated for any repairs or maintenance needed. Most filters need to be heavily cleaned at least once per year but this also depends greatly on the type of filter you may have. Ensuring that pump intakes are not clogged with debris will ensure improved pump live and performance.
- Cleaning water gardens of their collected wastes can also vary from approach. Varying on environments, quality of ecological balance in the water garden, volume of sunlight, fish load, and feeding habits all have a great affect on the accumulation of unwanted waste debris in the water garden. Cleaning too often can be a problem and rarely should ever be done more than every 1-2 years. If a collection of bio waste & debris is present in the bottom at a depth of more than 1-2”, then a cleaning is likely needed. If no more waste is present than this, cleaning can be avoided but does vary from site to site. As one of our water garden associates for more details.
- Start up of beneficial bacteria with one, such as Microbe Lift PL, is an important part of kick starting an ecological balance. Beneficial bacterial play an important role in removing the need ammonia and nitrites to beneficial and less toxic nitrates taking up by aquatic plants. This is one of the most important parts of a successful water garden. Ask one of our associates more about how to tweak and manage an ecological balance in your water garden.
- Evaluating you water garden aquatic plants that are present in the water garden is important this time of year. Whether it be marginal hardy aquatic plants or other suspended ones like Water Lilies, and Lotus, aquatic plants do grow and spread quite fast and often repotting into larger containers, dividing or reducing the volume of root mass, or other forms of aquatic plant maintenance and fertilizing may be suggested. Ask our associates about what your needs may be.
- Always keep some Dechlorinator “Pond Detox” on hand in the case of an accidental condition of overfilling with tap water. Often pond owners will add water to the water garden from their tap water source having chlorine and other metals present. Any time more than 20-25% of the pond’s water volume is added new, a dechlorinator product should be added to ensure that your fish are not killed. Chlorine in heavier volume will kill pond hard fish. Most pond owners have experienced accidentally leaving on a water hose too long to only find out that they don’t have a dechlorinating product on hand. We advise to always keep some on hand for when this may occur.