Gardening This Weekend: January 13, 2022
This is the most-read part of e-gardens. I try to keep it concise so you can scan it quickly to see what needs to be on your “gotta-do” list for the weekend.
• Pansies, violas, pinks, snapdragons, sweet alyssum, stocks, English daisies, primroses and other cool-season annuals right now to get maximum enjoyment out of their blooms before it turns hot.
• Recommended varieties of fruit and pecan trees, grapes and bramble berries for your part of Texas. Here’s a link to a really useful set of fact sheets from Texas A&M horticulturists.
• Onions and English peas in South Texas. Wait a week or two in Central and North Central Texas. Wait two or three weeks in far North Texas.
• Relocate established trees and shrubs that you’re wanting to move from one spot to another. This must be done while they’re dormant. Don’t wait too long. You’ll be amazed at how quickly things will start growing when we hit a warm spell in a few weeks.
• Trees to remove any branches killed by last February’s cold. They will have become dried and brittle and will easily fall with added weight of ice or snow. Don’t take the chance of their doing damage or causing injury.
• Do not “top” crape myrtles for any purported reason. There is never justification for doing so. I’ve been making that statement for my entire career, and believe me, I’ve heard some preposterous excuses! Just don’t do it!
• Other summer-flowering shrubs and vines as needed to remove unwanted and damaged branches.
• Peach and plum trees to maintain low, bowl-shaped growth habits and to eliminate any strongly vertical shoots. Remove vertical “water sprouts” from apples. Do very little pruning to pears and figs – primarily just to remove damaged branches.
• Grapes to remove up to 80 or 85 percent of cane growth each winter. Maintain scaffold branching along their supports.
• Pansies, pinks, snapdragons, alyssum and other winter color with high-nitrogen, water-soluble plant food with each watering. The container will give you instructions on amounts. They will depend on concentrations of nutrients.
• New tree and shrub plantings with liquid, high-phosphate root-stimulator fertilizer monthly for first year. Same root-stimulator at planting for new annuals.
• Asparagus beds with all-nitrogen fertilizer such as 21-0-0 now to promote vigorous growth of new spears.
ON THE LOOKOUT
• Broadleafed weeds such as clover and dandelions can be sprayed with a 2,4-D product during warm spell in winter. That’s especially true now in South Texas. Read and follow label directions for best results.
• Houseplants for mealybugs, scales, spider miles and whiteflies. Their populations build due to lack of predators indoors. Apply labeled insecticide, preferably systemic.
• Scale insects on fruit trees, camellias, hollies, euonymus and other landscape and garden plants. Apply dormant (“horticultural”) oil spray according to label directions.