Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Garden in September

GUEST POST by Jennifer Iseli

“Though it is the smallest of all your seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and perch in its branches.” Matthew 13:32

• Stop most heavy pruning and fertilizing; however, you will want to lightly fertilize any perennial mums or fall blooming flowers and shrubs.

• Apply a time release fertilizer to Hellebores for a better flower display in late winter.

• Fertilize any stressed plants with a low nitrogen fertilizer.

• Apply lime (if needed)

• Prune hedges.

• Plant cool season veggies such as kale, kohlrabi, leaf lettuce, onions, mustard, and radishes at the beginning of the month

• Before you move any houseplants back inside, repot those that have overgrown their pots and check carefully for insects and their eggs.

• Start fall clean-up in the flower beds, cutting back anything that has finished blooming or is diseased

• Separate, divide and move perennials such as lily of the valley or perennial phlox

• Harvest remaining summer vegetables, including green tomatoes. (Ripen by wrapping each in a sheet of newspaper and storing in a cool (55 - 60 degrees F.) dark spot

• If there are fruit trees in your yard, clean up fallen fruit. They can harbor diseases and mold spores

• It’s time to plant peonies! And also Trees and shrubs. Keep well watered, if there isn’t sufficient rain.

• Dispose of any diseased or infested plant debris that you may find, to avoid over wintering the problem (but do not compost this stuff)

Did you know?
Complete Fertilizers contain 3 main nutrients:
• Nitrogen (N) which helps developing leaves
• Phosphorus (P) which aids in root and flower development
• Potassium (K) which aids in fruit development
You will always find them in this order too (N_P_K)
It’s called a “Guaranteed Analysis” which guarantees that the nutrients are found in this exact per portion.
• A “balanced” fertilizer contains equal amounts of each element. For example: 10-10-10 is a balanced fertilizer.
• When you are told to apply a fertilizer that is specific for one element it means that you need to look for a fertilizer where that number is much higher than the others. For example, a 20-5-5 fertilizer would be called a Nitrogen fertilizer.

Thrifty Tips
• Over-winter ferns (and other tropicals) inside your house. They may start to look “ratty” towards the end of the winter, but as long as they are still alive (you can lightly scratch the stem to see), it won’t take long for them to flush out in the spring.

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