Saturday, May 04, 2002

Gardening Things To Do This Week




The Civic Garden Center

        Landscaping

        • When late spring frost occurs, plant damage often can be averted if the plants are washed off early in the morning before the sunlight hits the foliage.

        • To clarify existing nutrients and/or toxins in soil, conduct a soil test. Kentucky residents should contact their county extension agents. Ohio residents can call the Civic Garden Center Hotline at 221-8733 for soil test laboratory information.

        Flowers/shrubs

        • After lilacs finish blooming, cut back to the ground 1/3 of the oldest, largest branches to curtail borer. Gently shape the overall shrub. Avoid a sheared look. Lilacs bloom on second-year wood.

        • To preserve lilac blossoms indoors, remove all foliage material that will draw water away from the flower. Crush the stem end and place in clear, carbonated water. Adding aspirin may help keep water supplied to the branches.

        • When dividing mature hosta clumps, minimize disruption of growth by leaving the clump in the ground and slicing out narrow wedges of the clump in three or four places around the perimeter. Fill spaces with amended soil.

        Pest alert

        • The weedy Garlic Mustard is blooming. This prolific spreader can take over other native, less-aggressive plants. The best remedy is to pull the plants out by the roots, place in a black plastic bag and leave in the full sun to ensure that the high temperatures will kill all seeds inside the bag.

        • Check mugho and other pines for small white pine scale. Treat with dormant oil now and again in mid-July.

        Eco tip

        • Look kindly on the many insects that are beneficial to gardens. The product SEVIN kills many unwanted insects, but is toxic to bees.

        • Beneficial microbes can be added to the compost heap by including a shovel or two of garden soil between layers of vegetation.

        Contact the Civic Garden Center Hotline by e-mail: hotline@civicgardencenter.org, or phone, 221-8733.

       



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