Coastal and Tropical South

December, 2005
Regional Report

Recycle Trees, Please

When you get that new calendar, make a note: As soon as you take down the Christmas tree, send it to the recycler. Many municipalities will accept trees, garlands, and wreaths to chop into compost or for use in coastal projects. Put those trees to use to rebuild and prevent erosion!

Diagnosing Parsley Problems

Yellow leaves on lower leaves of parsley clearly indicate the need for a dose of nitrogen fertilizer. The bottom leaves are giving up theirs to keep the top growing, so pluck the damaged leaves off and feed the plant. If all the leaves are yellow, the problem is most likely overwatering.

Cut Down Nipped Perennials

Parts of our neck of the woods have had freezing temperatures recently, and that brings changes. Perennials like cannas, rudbeckias, coneflowers, and hosta have turned brown and can be cut down now. If pests were a problem in any of these plantings, remove the material from the garden.

Prune Hollies

Not just owls are wise. Birds save the best berries for late winter, and that means hollies. It is said that birds let the berries ferment, then devour them. Don't stop the party! Leave hollies alone until late January, except for the stems you cut for last-minute table decorations.

Caring for Sasanquas

As sasanquas finish their flowering season, give them basic care for a healthy new year. Rake up the petals to prevent petal blight, then put a new coat of mulch underneath. Use an oil spray if insects have troubled the plants, prune within one month of flowering, then fertilize.

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