Lower South

December, 2004
Regional Report

Storing Extra Pecans

Pecan harvest season is over, but holiday baking has just begun. If you have extra pecans, place the nuts in glass or plastic containers in the freezer. This will assure good quality all the way to next winter. Warm temperatures and exposure to air will cause pecans to turn rancid rather rapidly.

Fertilize Cool-Season Color Beds

Cool-season flowering bedding plants need good nutrition to keep them vigorous and blooming up a storm. Microbial activity slows down considerably in cool winter soils, making nutrients less available. These plants perform best with a light fertilizing every four to six weeks. Use a complete plant food with a 3-1-2 or similar ratio of nutrients.

Extend the Life of Holiday Plants

That poinsettia, Christmas cactus, cyclamen, or rosemary can be kept happy and healthy with a little extra attention to light and watering. Keep these potted plants well watered but not soggy. Set them in a sink to water, and then allow them to drain well before replacing any foil pot wraps. Place them in a bright location during the day, and they will stay beautiful throughout the holiday season.

Last-Minute Gardening Gifts

Need a few last-minute shopping suggestions for a gardening friend? These would make welcome gifts: a new gardening book, a subscription to a garden magazine, a houseplant, a nice container, some quality tools, or a gift certificate from a nursery or garden center.

Make Your Seed-Shopping List

Order seeds soon so you will be ready to get an early start on the spring and summer garden. Seed catalogs will be arriving soon, but start planning the garden now. By the time the catalogs arrive, you will be ready to get the orders in the mail for the best selection.

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