Gardening This Weekend: June 1, 2017
• New lawngrass from sod, seed or plugs. It’s much easier to get it established now than it will be in a few weeks.
• Hot-weather annuals such as trailing lantana, pentas, angelonia, purslane, moss rose, fanflower, firebush and, from foliage: purple fountaingrass and copper plants.
• Tropicals to enhance pool and patio settings, including bananas, hibiscus, elephant ears (shade), crotons, bougainvillea and mandevilla among others.
• Branches that have been damaged by spring storms. Left-over freeze damage from the January cold. (There still are dead tops in crape myrtles, oleanders and other plants that need to be pruned.)
• Low-hanging branches that are casting excessive shade onto lawn, causing grass to thin in the process. (Wait until mid-July to prune oaks to lessen chance of oak wilt invasion. All oak cuts must be treated with pruning sealant immediately after pruning.)
• Vigorous and erratic new growth on shrubs, groundcovers, but try to maintain natural growth forms. Avoid rounded and squared shearing whenever possible.
• Turfgrass with second feeding of high-nitrogen or all-nitrogen fertilizer with half or more of that nitrogen in slow-release form. This is especially critical for St. Augustine. You do not want to apply nitrogen after mid-June in case gray leaf spot could be an issue.
• Hanging baskets and container plants with high-nitrogen, water-soluble plant food each time that you water.
• Iron and sulfur soil acidifier to correct chlorosis (yellowed leaves, dark green veins, most prominent on newest growth first).
ON THE LOOKOUT
• Second application of pre-emergent to prevent germination of crabgrass, grassburs. Apply Team, Dimension or Halts granules now followed by a good watering. It may be difficult to find these granules, but your local independent retail garden center can order them in for you. If you did not make first application in March, this application will be useless.
• Early blight causing lower leaves of tomatoes to turn yellow, then quickly dried and brown. Apply labeled fungicide.
• Webworms in pecans, other trees. Prune small webs out of canopy before they overtake branches. Spraying is not efficient and requires power equipment.
• Chiggers and mosquitoes. It’s probably easier to treat yourself than to treat all of your world. Apply DEET insect repellent to keep them away. Spray all exposed flesh. For chiggers, spray feet, ankles and calves, then spray outside of shoes, clothes as well.