Gardening This Weekend: May 9, 2019
So, you can either print out this page and put checks by the ones you agree need to be done at your place, or you can scratch out a list of your own using this as your starting point.
• New lawngrasses from sod, seed or plugs. Temperatures are perfect all over the state. Remember that whether you’re sodding or seeding, bed preparation (light tilling and raking) is the same. You do not “over-seed” bermudagrass. Its seed is far too tiny. And you don’t lay sod over existing grass.
• Annual color for summer. There are many good choices. I wrote about my personal favorites here a couple of weeks ago. I’ll give you a link back to that story.
• New trees, shrubs and groundcovers. Nurseries are beginning to run sales to reduce their inventories before summer. Transport your plants home carefully. Protect them from highway winds by covering them with cloth or nursery shade fabric tied securely in place.
• Erratic spring growth on shrubs and even shade trees. Your goal is to maintain their natural growth form.
• Mow lawn at recommended height. Allowing grass to grow tall does not make it more vigorous. Tall grass becomes weaker and allows weeds to invade.
• Low-hanging branches on shade trees if they are creating hazards or casting excessive shade on turf and landscape below. Just the weight of leaves can pull outer limbs down by many inches, even feet.
• Lawns, probably with an all-nitrogen food (unless a Texas A&M soil test recommends otherwise). Upwards of half of that nitrogen should be slow-release.
• Trees, shrubs, flowers and vegetables can probably be fed with that same all-nitrogen or high-nitrogen fertilizer. Most Texas soils have excessively high amounts of phosphorus (middle number in the analysis).
• Iron-deficient plants that show the typical yellowed leaves with dark green veins on their newest growth first.
ON THE LOOKOUT
• Pecan phylloxera galls causing knots on leaves of pecan leaves, then causing them to fall prematurely. There is nothing you can do to stop it now. Application of horticultural oil in late winter will help. As with most other leaf galls of oaks, hackberries, cottonwoods, this pest is not terribly damaging.
• Crape myrtle bark scale is showing up across Texas. The white insects appear on twigs of new growth as well as stems and trunks. Drench soil with systemic insecticide. Click to see recent story.
• Plum curculios are leaving congealed drips on surface of peach and plum fruit. Larvae of the insect are within the fruit. There is nothing that can be done to save crop now. Application of Malathion when 75 percent of petals have fallen in early spring stops the adult snout beetles from laying their eggs. Pick up fallen fruit in May and June.