Well it looks like winter has given us her last kiss goodbye (last weekend's snow) or at least that's what we all hope. We are expecting an amazing amount of plants coming in the next couple of days just in time for Mother's Day. If you haven't been in yet this year we have a lot of changes that we hope you're going to like. We can't wait to get going.
We are hosting a square foot gardening class Saturday May 8th @ 2:00 that will be hosted by Rodney Ross a certified square foot gardener. To get certified Rodney took classes from the father of square foot gardening Mel Bartholomew. It is going to be good, to sign up you can email us @ firstname.lastname@example.org
This is going to be a big year for the lady bug, also called lady beetles. I have seen a lot of them around already which means it could be a big year for insects. I usually talk about the devastation that a certain bug is causing in the garden, now it's time to take a positive look, so you guessed it, this month let's talk about the Lady Bug.
The lady bug is the gardener's friend, they feed on aphids, scale, mealy bugs and mites. These beauties can eat up to 5000 aphids in their lifetime. They are one of the first insects to arrive in the spring.
With over 450 species in North America alone, these guys come in all different colors, yellow, pink, orange, red, or black. Their distinctive spots combined with their bright colors serve as a warning to discourage animals to eat them. They also put out an odor and a noxious fluid that comes out of their joints when disturbed.
To have a better chance of keeping these guys in the garden you will want to only use pesticides when needed. We will have lady bugs for sale in a couple of weeks.
Violinas are the flower for this month's Petal Pushing. They don't need to be dead headed which is a plus. Violinas are cold hardy which is another plus with our temperature swings early in the season. With a mounding, and a trailing habit these guys are great in a pot and outstanding in a hanging basket. Just like violas they don't like the heat and will fade around June or July. Guaranteed to brighten any sun or part sun spot. They are a heavy bloomer.
Back To Basics
Time for the organic part of the newsletter. It's time again to talk about our Yum Yum fertilizer. This is our third year carrying Yum Yum and it's nice to see people coming into the store talking about how well it worked for them.
If you haven't used it yet you may want to give it a try. This all purpose food is designed for our southwestern soils. The way it works is that it feeds the soil and then the soil feeds the plant. It brings the soil back to life. It feeds the micro-organisms and worms which helps make the nutrients available for your plant. Come on give it a try.
Winter was kind to us with all that moisture. The temperatures are rising and the ground is starting to dry out. While working in the yard the other day for my "Life Is Better" blog part of my yard was really wet and part of it was really dry. That means that you need to snoop around and make sure that you start watering as soon as you dry out. We are starting to get warmer days. Remember to freshen up your bark and/or mulch this will help keep the moisture in and cut down on your waterings.
What To Do
Now is the time to inspect your sprinkler system for anything that may not be working. Do a walk around and inspect your plants for insects. Thrips (covered in April 2009 Newsletter) will be coming soon if they haven't yet they are known for sucking the life out of blooms. So get out there and spray those little guys. We are a little behind compared to last year seeing how the leaves on the trees are barely starting to push. So don't be discouraged yet if your favorite perennial has not made a showing yet.
If you haven't yet, it's time to get the garden ready. We have really great soils, fertilizers and amendments. If you haven't even picked out a spot to have your garden you may want to put it where the snow in your yard first melted. Common sense says that this is the spot that gets more sun and maybe warmer at night.
If you have big plans on a do it yourself job violasflowergarden.com is the answer. We have over 800 items on our website with pictures and information. Of course this isn't all that we carry but it is a great