Wow what a crazy season this year. Boy did we get spoiled last year. The freezing and near freezing temperatures are finally over (we all hope). The nursery is still stuffed with all kinds of cool flowers and vegetables so get out there and finish up those early season projects.
We are so proud of our returning staff they are like fine wine they get better and better every year. They really have done a wonderful job this year. Speaking of returning, if you have not been in to see us lately we have our flower tower back. Yes the 10' tower filled with flowers is back, and this year we are graced with a second one. Come check them out.
For those of you that follow my blog "Life Is Better" I apologize we went from winter to summer so I stopped gardening and writing for a while so that I could keep up with nursery work. Now that the big rush for the season is more manageable I will be sending out an issue this week. I can't wait.
This month's insect is the flea beetle. These bugs aren't like your kids, they love their vegetables. That's right they love their leafy vegetable plants. If you have broccoli, cabbage and other cole crops that have leaves that look like someone shot it with a shotgun (a bunch of tiny round holes) you probably have these little guys. They're small tiny and black, if you go to squish them they actually will jump.
They become active in the mid-spring. Many flea beetles are strong fliers and seek out their plants. They may have a second generation later in the summer. The flea beetle usually doesn't effect the plants health they make it look bad. They need to effect 10 to 20 percent of the leaves before they effect the yields.
You can get rid of them by using sevin dust, diatomaceous earth and neem insecticides like tomato and vegetable 3 and 1.
Everyone loves a pretty pot. To design a wonderful pot you need to follow a couple good tips. Like a nicely set table you need a centerpiece. A centerpiece should be a grass, guara, or something that gives you height.
Then you need some fillers. Those are the guys that do all the dirty work. These guys usually upright or taller than the trailers that I will talk about in a bit. They are smaller than the centerpiece, they are the glue that keeps the pot together. Just about any flower that keeps blooming and fits the height requirement will do just fine.
The last ingredient to your pot is a trailer these are the guys that trail off the pot. The most popular ones are petunias, million bells, potato vines and scaveola. We will be happy to assist you in creating your masterpiece.
Oh... you can also fill your pot with just one type of flower that is pretty too. Get your pot started today.
Back To Basics
This month's natural and organic fertilizer is Tomato And Vegetables Food. This is brand new to Viola's it's made by the same makers of Yum Yum so we couldn't wait to get it into the nursery. This fertilizer produces stronger roots, healthier plants and more fruit. Looking at the long list of ingredients they didn't miss a thing. The best thing is this gem is tailor made for the needs of vegetables and you don't have to buy multiple products just one. I can't wait to see the results.
Well now that it seems like we are done with freezing temps time to worry about the heat. That's right time to get out and water. Remember to adjust your watering accordingly, the heat can dry out your soils quick. You can use mulch and put down bark to help your fight with the heat.
Make sure you keep an eye out on those hanging baskets. If you come home and they are wilted all may not be lost. Water that baby quickly until the pot feels heavy and then put it in the shade so that it has time to recoup. If you have caught it in time it will bounce back. Human nature will make you want to keep watering it. Don't do it, water it good and then leave it alone other wise you may drown it.
Monsoons will be coming soon and with that comes a curve ball. Remember a down pour for five or ten minutes may not soak into the ground. Especially if the tree or shrub is really bushy. Do the work and check it out make sure that it did rain enough and that the rain has gotten to where you need it. When in doubt check it out.
What To Do
Time to plan your large planting projects now with monsoons around the corner. They won't water your new plants but they will help with the rain and cooler temps. You should also take a look at you sprinkler systems and see if you need to make any adjustments, or even worse, a leak. You should also fertilize your lawn and flowers again give them a little boost before we get into the heat of the summer. Don't forget the Yum Yum. Time to clean up any trees, shrubs, flowers that are overgrown, have suckers or just need a little trimming. Stay on top of dead heading your flowers (trimming off the spent blooms). This will encourage your flowers to keep blooming. Time to retreat with Corn Gluten, with the Monsoons just around the corner you will want to put down this pre-emergent (prevents new weeds from germinating). Enjoy your garden and don't forget to make yourself some notes on what worked for you, and what you want to change.