Middle South

March, 2005
Regional Report

Put Up Bluebird Houses

Install bluebird houses to attract those early birds looking for nesting sites. Place the houses 4 to 6 feet high at the edge of a clearing. If you are putting up more than one house, space them at least 100 feet apart; bluebirds are very territorial.

Start Cannas Indoors

Give your cannas a head start by planting them indoors in containers. Cut the rhizomes into pieces, making sure that each piece has two or three eyes, or growing points. Plant the rhizomes a few inches deep in large containers, then place the pots in a warm spot. Wait to plant cannas outdoors until a week or so after the last frost date.

Rejuvenate Liriope

Rejuvenate monkey grass (liriope) by clipping back to a height of 2 or 3 inches. For large plantings, use a lawn mower. Take care not to cut back any lower than that or you could risk damaging the plants' crowns, where new growth arises.

Aerate Lawns

If your lawn gets lots of traffic, or if the grass isn\'t growing as well as you\'d like, it might be time to aerate it. A core aerator removes small plugs of sod and deposits them on the surface. The resulting holes allow water and nutrients to move down into the soil more readily.

Keep Cut Daffodils Separate

If you cut daffodil flowers to enjoy indoors, avoid mixing them with other cut flowers, at least right away. Daffodil stems exude a slimy substance that can damage other flowers. After a day or so of sitting in water, the stems stop secreting the substance and you can safely move them to a vase with other flowers, as long as you don't recut the daffodils' stems.

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