Gardening This Weekend: June 23, 2016

Plant-leaderboard-042116• Hot-weather annuals such as trailing lantanas, angelonias, moss rose, hybrid purslane, Cora periwinkles and many others.
• Crape myrtles, while plants are in full bloom in local nurseries. Choose varieties whose sizes match up with what you have available for them. And choose the precise color that pleases you most. (See related story this issue.)
• New turf. You have about 10 weeks to get this job done for 2016, and the longer you delay, the less the cover will be before frost. As hot as it is, you’ll have to water lightly once or possibly twice daily – but only for five minutes per area per time. After 10 days, gradually water less often, but more at each time.
• Fall tomatoes (see related story this issue) and pumpkins very soon for your fall harvest.


Prune-leaderboard-042116• Dead and damaged branches from trees and shrubs.
• Perennials to remove old flower stalks and dried foliage.
• Patio pots and hanging baskets by pinching to maintain attractive form.
• If you are seeing browned turf for a day or two each time that you mow bermudagrass lawns, raise your mower one notch for the rest of this season. You’re removing all the leaf tissues and cutting into stem stubble. Remember to drop the blade down that same notch come the February scalping.


Fertilize-leaderboard-042116• Chlorotic plants (suffering iron deficiency) with an iron/sulfur combination product. The sulfur helps acidify the soil, keeping the iron in soluble form. Keep iron products off concrete, brick and painted surfaces (due to staining).
• Trees, shrubs, groundcovers, annuals and perennials with all-nitrogen fertilizer unless soil test directs otherwise. The lone exception: do not apply nitrogen to St. Augustine from mid-June through early September to lessen chances of gray leaf spot.


On-the-Lookout-leaderboard-042116• BAGWORMS! They’re out, and they’re active. Watch for them NOW on junipers, arborvitae, cypress trees. Apply labeled insecticide immediately if they are feeding actively (until they tie their bags to the twigs).
• Chinch bugs in St. Augustine. They will return to the same hot, sunny locations each summer. If grass doesn’t respond overnight to watering, look closely at ground level for BB-sized black insects with irregular white diamonds on their wings. Treat with a product labeled for chinch bugs as soon as you see them. They can quickly ruin your lawn.
• Leafrollers in vinca groundcover, cannas, redbuds, sweetgums and many other plants. Apply systemic insecticide to soil. It will require three weeks to be effective, but it’s the best possible control.
• Lacebugs and spider mites will both turn leaves tan as they suck sap from the foliage. Take samples in with you and let your Texas Certified Nursery Professional help you ID the problems.

Posted by Neil Sperry
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