Saturday, September 16, 2000

To do this week


        • Reseed bare patches in your lawn. Scratch the seed lightly into the soil; cover very lightly with straw or other mulch, and keep well watered until the seeds germinate.

        • Plant ground covers such as pachysandra, Vinca minor or ivy early this month to get them established before winter.


        • Rejuvenate your perennial garden about every five years by removing plants, digging in manure or compost and replanting.

        • Plant perennials. Spread out the roots over a cone of soil in the planting hole.

        • Plant pansies outside to overwinter for spring display. Protect if temperatures dip below 15 degrees.

        • Cut flowers such as strawflowers, globe amaranth, statice and celosia for drying. Bundle and hang upside down in a dry, well-ventilated area.


        • Force Thanksgiving or Christmas cactus to bloom for the holidays by giving them 15 hours of darkness a night for eight weeks, at cool temperatures (around 65 degrees).

        • Water indoor plants less frequently and discontinue fertilizer applications toward the end of the month.

        • Apply insect control, such as insecticidal soap, several weeks before bringing houseplants from the patio back indoors for the winter.

Eco tip

        Save fallen leaves, garden debris and kitchen scraps to make compost. Construct a 3-foot bin using 10 feet of 36-inch wide concrete reinforcing wire or wire fencing. For fast decomposition, chop the materials by running over them with the lawnmower; add to the bin and turn the pile occasionally to have compost by spring. Cover kitchen waste in the pile with grass or leaves to keep flies away.

       Source: Sue Trusty, director of education at the Civic Garden Center of Greater Cincinnati, 221-0981.


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