Gardening This Weekend: September 1, 2022
Here are starters for the Labor Day weekend. You might want to check through them.
• Nursery stock for fall landscaping. Garden centers are restocking and fall is a great time for planting.
• Fall-flowering perennials as they are sold in nurseries, including Mexican bush sage, Mexican mint marigold, mums and Gregg’s mistflower.
• Fall-flowering bulbs as you find them in nurseries. List includes spider lilies, fall crocus, oxblood lilies and naked lady lilies.
• Wildflower seeds, including acid-scarified bluebonnets for best germination. Plant into dedicated wildflower spaces where you do not have turfgrass. They do not compete well.
• Weeds, especially ragweed, to lessen allergies and spread of seeds. If you happen to have milkweed on a rural Texas property, however, leave it in place for the monarchs.
• Dead branches from trees and shrubs. If you have dead branches high up in oaks, pecans and other large shade trees, contract to have them removed before winter.
• Stubble from spring and summer perennials to tidy their gardens. Put layer of mulched leaves around the plants to lessen weed growth over winter.
• Lawns for fall feeding. Apply high-quality lawn fertilizer as prescribed by soil test. For most Texas soils that will mean an all-nitrogen food with a significant percentage of that nitrogen in slow-release form. Water deeply after application.
• Water-soluble, high-nitrogen fertilizer for hanging baskets, patio pots.
• Iron additive for plants showing chlorosis. Look for yellowed leaves with dark green veins most prominently displayed on newest growth (at ends of branches). Acid-loving plants are most likely to show it: azaleas, gardenias, camellias, dogwoods, waxleaf ligustrums, Carolina jessamines and wisterias. Include a sulfur soil-acidifier with the iron. Keep iron off masonry and painted surfaces to prevent staining.
ON THE LOOKOUT
• Critical timing! Apply pre-emergent granules of Halts, Dimension or Balan to prevent germination of winter grasses including annual bluegrass (Poa annua), rescuegrass or ryegrass. You only get this one chance to deal with these grassy weeds. Once they germinate there is no product that will eliminate them without doing harm to your permanent turfgrass. This application must be made within the next several days. See related story last week.
• Gallery pre-emergent granules in separate application to prevent broadleafed weeds such as henbit, chickweed, dandelions and clover. If you miss this treatment you can apply a broadleafed weedkiller spray containing 2,4-D to kill existing non-grassy weeds in November or early December.