Coastal and Tropical South

November, 2005
Regional Report

Choose the Right Tree

Tree planting time is November to February because it is important to give roots time to get established before they need to support leafy growth. In choosing the right tree, know its likely ultimate height: "small" means 15 feet tall; "medium," at least 30 feet; and "tall" can mean 50 feet and taller.

Choosing Containers

Because many areas typically have very cold spells in the winter, or long hot times in summer, choose containers that can take the changes. Larger sizes will hold heat longer in the rootball, thus risking less cold damage to roots. They won't dry out as fast, either, demanding less water than small pots.

Potting Up Amaryllis

Lots of people give and get amaryllis kits as gifts, and they do keep on giving, first in pots, then in the garden. Plant bulbs in the light soil mix provided, leaving the neck of the bulb above the soil. Start in a cool room to control its height. Transplant to the garden in spring.

Don't Plant Bulbs Too Deeply

A common complaint: I planted lots of bulbs, but only a few came up! The answer to this dilemma is proper planting depth. When the guide tells you to plant the bulbs 4 to 6 inches deep, don't believe it. In our regions, plant bulbs no deeper than twice their height.

Keep The Cuts Safe

Saw safety often comes down to one thing: sharp blades. Whether you are working with a chain saw or a folding saw, you are much more likely to hurt yourself if the blade is dull. Get into a routine of cleaning and sharpening saws (unless they are serrated) after each use.

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