Gardening This Weekend: November 25, 2021
If you’re looking for ways to work off those last five pieces of pie, maybe gardening could be a good way in the next few days. Here are the most critical tasks for this time.
• Pansies and other winter color plants. Plant in raised beds of well-prepared, highly organic soil. They’re also outstanding in pots.
• Tulips and Dutch hyacinths must have 45 days in the fridge before you plant them outdoors by the end of the year. This is just about your last call to get that done. Daffodils and grape hyacinths can be planted at any time.
• Trees and shrubs can still be planted now, but you may have to hunt for them in the backs of the nurseries – behind the shipments of Christmas trees.
• Damaged branches from oaks, ashes, elms, other trees that were hurt by last winter’s cold. If branches (or entire trees) didn’t leaf out all year they’re not going to do so in the spring. Those tissues are dead and should be removed before they come down in winter storms. Damage and injury can be of serious concern.
• Trim to re-shape foliage plants you’ve brought in from the patio for winter.
• Mow lawn to remove fallen tree leaves. Bag the mulched eaves and use them in compost pile or beneath shrubs and around perennials.
• Pansies, pinks and other winter color with high-nitrogen, water-soluble plant food to keep them growing vigorously. Failure to feed adequately is a common cause of poor plant performance.
• Ryegrass and fescue (cool-season grasses) with high-nitrogen or all-nitrogen lawn food. Water immediately after feeding.
• Houseplants monthly with high-nitrogen, water-soluble plant food at half the recommended rate. Your goal for the winter is to maintain them status quo, not to encourage them to grow while they’re in the darker conditions indoors.
ON THE LOOKOUT
• Broadleafed weedkiller spray on a sunny, warm and relatively still day to kill cool-season broadleafed weeds before winter moves in. Read and follow label directions.
• Watch houseplants closely for signs of scale insects, mealybugs, whiteflies and spider mites. These pests commonly come in from outdoors when we bring plants inside for the winter.
• Remove mistletoe from cedar elm, oak branches as it becomes noticeable with leaf drop. Easiest way is to remove small clumps as soon as they form, before they get large enough to flower and produce fruit.