Southern California Coastal & Inland Valleys

May, 2003
Regional Report

Favorite or New Plant

Our Love Affair With Lawns
Who can resist the soft lushness of a thick mat of lawn for a nap, picnic, or afternoon romp? You can enjoy such a lawn even while reducing water and fertilizer. Mow lawns once or twice a week, setting mower blade height to between two and three inches. Don't cut off more than 25 percent of new growth at a time, or the lawn won't have enough of the blades left to grow well. Use a slow-release, preferably organic, fertilizer, just enough to provide nutrients but not so much that it stimulates lots of lush, water-demanding growth that will keep you mowing!

Begin to water only once a week or once every ten days. Let the grass tell you when it needs water -- it will wilt slightly and turn from bright green to dull green. Continue to water deeply to thoroughly moisten the soil down to the bottom root tips (6 to 12 inches deep). This will allow the surface of the soil to dry between waterings and encourage deep rooting, so the lawn can go longer between waterings. This also will discourage diseases, which develop when grass blades and the soil surface are constantly wet, especially during warm weather.

Shows & Events

Mediterranean Garden Design
Jan Smithen will speak on Mediterranean Garden Design on June 14, 9 a.m., at Roger's Gardens. She will discuss how we can create beautiful gardens in harmony with our climate that are easy on the land, our resources, and ourselves. The gardens are located at 2301 San Joaquin Hills Road, Corona del Mar, 92625. For more information, call (949) 640-5800 or go to:

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