May Garden Newsletter

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VEGETABLE GARDENING

Warm temperatures are here and your plants should be growing well. As temperatures continue to rise you may have to adjust watering. Remember ideally water in mornings, do not water the leaves, and soak deep. Deep watering’s fewer times a week is better than shallow watering’s every day.

Rainfall, humidity, and high temperatures make fungus prime for vegetables. Spraying once a week with specific fungicides will prevent and slow down fungus issues. Spraying is very important for the prolong harvest.

Blossom end rot has begun to occur on the tomatoes. This is the large dark spots that occurs on the bottom of tomatoes, peppers, squash, and eggplants. You can easily prevent this by spraying YIELD BOOSTER once per week when the fruit start to form on the plant. Otherwise you may lose the first crop of vegetables. This issue is not a fungus but is caused by the plants inability to pull calcium out of the soil. The YIELD BOOSTER has calcium and the plant absorbs it through the leaves. It works wonderfully! Use on tomatoes, bell peppers, squash, and eggplants.

If the fruit has already begun with end rot then you must use this products twice a week to stop it. There are other options available but talk to sales staff for more information.

If your vegetables have been in the ground for 5 or 6 weeks now is the time to side dress! Nitrogen is a major element that must be added because it leaches rapidly. Put a couple tablespoons away from plant, bury, and then water. Plants will turn dark green with lots of new growth. Calcium Nitrate is also used here to give nitrogen and calcium. The calcium will help with the blossom end rot issue.

One additional note on the side dressing of Nitrogen. Applying more than once a month will increase growth but decrease production. Also, do not apply on legumes (peas & beans). These plants produce their own Nitrogen. Applying will stimulate too much leaf growth, therefore reducing production.

The insect population will increase this month.  Be sure to make visual inspections to catch the population small. Then spray with the appropriate insecticide depending on the insect.

ROSE CARE

With the increased rainfall we have been receiving it is a good idea to spray roses, even the Knockouts and Drift. The consistency of rainfall has caused more fungus issues. A fungicide called FERTILOME LIQUID SYSTEMIC is great because it is absorbed into plant. Use 3 times over a 6 week period. Then as needed. For the avid tea rose grower alternating chemicals is recommended. Talk to sales staff for more detailed advice.

Once per month feeding during the growing season is recommended. Growing season is February through October.

FLOWERING BEDDING PLANTS

Temperatures are increasing at this point. It is important to plant flowers that will last all summer into the fall. Do not be fooled by plants that are beautiful now but will play out in a month. Flowers such as angelonia, vinca, purslane, portulaca, zinnas, begonias, caladiums, salvia and others will last all summer.

Perennials such as lantana, coreopsis, salvia (perennial), verbena, heather, and others can also be planted at this time.

The dreaded virus that occurred several years ago with impatiens has resurfaced. It will kill all  impatiens(not sun or new guinea). It is a transport from Florida and no sprays will kill or prevent.

FRUITS & CITRUS

Many of the fruit trees have fruit on the tree at this point. It is important to water weekly if we get into a drought during this month. Mother Nature will cause some of the fruit to fall naturally. However, watch watering because you can lose all your fruit if it gets too dry with temperatures rising.

Continued spraying trees such as peaches, pears, plums, and apples is vital.

TROPICALS

Hibiscus are heavy feeders so monthly fertilizations are important for heavy blooming. All tropicals in containers will benefit from continued fertilizations. Tropicals such as bouganvillias, mandevillas, allamandas, diplandinas, and others will benefit greatly from continued fertilization. Ask staff about FERTILOME HIBISCUS & TROPICAL PLANT FOOD. Ferns respond well to a combination of OSMOCOTE and FISH EMULSION. Leaf color will be dramatically darker green.

HERBS

Planting herbs late is no problem. Most love the heat and grow rapidly. They will grow well in containers or the ground. Cilantro is the one herb that does not respond well to late planting. All your basics (mints, parsley, oregano, basil, thyme, rosemary, etc) will do great.

AZALEA

Any pruning and fertilization can still be done now. Remember after June no more major pruning.

LAWN CARE

Continue to spray lawns for weed issues. We have now switched our weed & feed granules to a late season type. It is FERTILOME WEED OUT. It is great for St Augustine, Centipede, or Bermuda. However, we still recommend bringing us a sample of the weeds so we can select the best product for your lawn. Once temperatures reach upper 80’s you will be limited on weed killer useage. So attack now with the herbicides. Burweed (sticker weed) has been a particularly abundant weed this season. It is the one that hurts bare feet or paws when walking in lawn. Spray FERTILOME WEED FREE ZONE to kill.

You can fertilize your lawn all summer if necessary. Remember grass that is thin or damaged needs help. FERTILOME LAWN FOOD PLUS IRON is the best product to stimulate lush green growth. This is important to get the lawn to fill where sod in not thick! A healthy lawn will prevent weeds from continuing to re sprout. Never fertilize your lawn in the summer if it is particularly dry. Wait for the rain and apply.