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Tips, tricks and answers to your frequently asked lawn and garden questions.


June Lawn & Garden Tips
daylily

Planting

Bulbs such as iris and daylilies can be divided even when they are blooming. This would be an opportune time if you have different colors and want to work with them for the current season.  Simply cut off the existing flowers and cut the leaves back, dig and divide and replant as soon as possible, or you can tag the colors for later dividing.

When you purchase container plants, check the root ball and loosen the roots if they are tightly wound in the pot. You need to keep as much dirt intact on the roots as possible as this will help the roots to move out and “root in” their new location.

Whether it is your accent plants or your focal point for your yard, many people prefer to buy trees and shrubs while in bloom to make sure the colors are what they like such as the Hydrangea, Crape myrtle, Oleander or Magnolia.

Fertilizing

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to fertilize your plants. Not just for the health and growth of your plants but also for your blooming plants to help produce more and better. Water well after fertilizing.

Azaleas and camellias should be fertilized right after they have finished blooming and roses after each bloom time. We carry fertilizers specifically for your blooming needs. 

Container gardens are a beautiful addition to your patio or porches but they will need additional attention such as fertilizer.  You can give them regular doses of a water-soluble fertilizer or try a slow release granular fertilizer that will release a little every time you water.

Watering/Irrigation

Most professionals will recommend that watering be done in the morning for the most benefit including helping to slow down evaporation of the water. But if you find your plants/lawn are drying out due to an extremely hot summer and/or drought time, go ahead and give them more water perhaps in the early afternoon. Also, check your container plants, they will dry out quicker.

Mulch is a good addition to your flower beds and plantings, it helps to shade the soil and keep it cooler which helps retain moisture during the hot days.

If you have irrigation, keep an eye out for broken sprinkler heads. This will help you avoid dry areas and wasted water. Consider having a “Rain Check” control added to your system. This helps reduce over watering by not allowing your system to water after a rain shower. As the plants grow they may interfere with the sprinkler so keep things trimmed back.

It is a good idea to water slowly and deeply. This will encourage your plants to grow deeper roots. That can make them more stable and keeps the roots away from the upper drier soil.  

Pruning and Maintenance

It is possible to have roses, and some perennials re-bloom. The best way to encourage it is to “dead head” your plant by removing the old blooms. Annuals can also be deadheaded and re-bloom most of the summer. Your hanging baskets will benefit as well with a good once over for dead blooms and shaping.

Pinch back any of your plants that seem to be getting leggy and out of shape. Whether it’s an annual or perennial, pruning your plant helps make it healthier and look better. Most evergreens benefit from pruning. The optimum time would be around June and July.

For maximum flavor of your herbs, pick or harvest just before flowering as the leaves have the most oil content.          

Miscellaneous

To help you keep up with what you have planted, where it is, and info on the plants, try keeping up with this in a notebook or on your computer. This information can save you time and money. You can look back and see which plant needed what fertilizer, when and so on.

Avoid the heat and humidity of our hot summers by working in the early a.m. or later afternoon into the evening makes the time you spend working in the yards a little easier.

While you are out in the yard working in your lawn and gardens, involve your kids or grand kids. Have them help you weed, plant or most anything. It is good exercise, and helps them to learn that sense of pride of a job well done. Being outside, helping, is time spent with you they will never forget.

Speaking of weeding, if you weed in your flowerbeds on a regular basis it makes that chore a little easier to deal with. Ground cloth or mulch are good for weed prevention also.  If you put mulch around woody plants don’t pile it on close around the trunks. Just a couple inches deep starting a few inches away is plenty.

If you have a compost heap or bins, remember the heat of the summer can also dry them out. Moisture is the key and it should also be turned regularly to aide in the natural decomposition.

Stake tall flowers to keep them from blowing over and tie up your climbing roses or other vines for a more secure plant. Make sure any plant or tree you have ties on are loose enough so as not to cut into the stems.

Pests

Is there something eating at your plant’s leaves/stem/bloom? Do you have a white/gray/black residue on it? You should always research your problem to identify what is actually going on with your plant. This will lead you to the best solution but you will need the most information of the problem.  It is wise as well, to chose the lest toxic solution and follow the directions completely.

Roses are prone to mildew, black spot, aphids and other diseases and insect.  Identify and take action. The sooner you identify the problem and take action, the better your plant will be.

It seems that the ever so vital honeybee, maybe suffering from the pesticides sold on the shelves as well as the pest they were designed for. Just a couple tweaks in our pesticide application habits will aide in the promotion of their population. Try using a liquid pesticide instead of a dust and try applying later in the afternoon/evening when the bees are mostly heading back to the hive.

Here at Magnolia Landscape Supply, we have a large selection of pesticides, we can help you identify the problem and find a solution.

Lawn

If your lawn seems compacted, hard for water to absorb or have a nematode problem, you may want to aerate your lawn. We rent a sod aerator for $49.95 per day plus tax. 

A good rule of thumb for mowing is to cut off no more than 1/3 of the grass blade at each mowing. If your grass is “growing like a weed”, try more frequent mowing to maintain better grass. As for your St. Augustine and Zoysia grasses, they would be better off at a mowed height of around 3”. This helps to shade the soil and saves the moisture in the soil.

To prevent the ragged cut of a grass blade, keep your mower blades sharp.

You should consider leaving the trimmings, if there isn’t an excessive amount due to overgrowth. The trimmings will make their way to the soil, returning nitrogen of the grass back to the soil.

If you have an area that is too shady for grass, try using ground cover plants or a mulch.

One secret to having the appearance of a professionally mowed lawn, is to keep a nice clean edge around the flowerbeds, sidewalk, driveway, etc. so pull out the edger or grass shears and keep it neat and tidy.




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