Pacific Northwest

June, 2006
Regional Report

Recycle Grass Clippings

Decomposing grass clippings left on the lawn return valuable nutrients -- especially nitrogen -- to turf grass. Rake up grass clippings or bag them only when the grass has grown unusually tall between mowings and clumps of mown grass are left on the lawn. Compost those clippings.

Fertilize Plants

Annual flowers need loving care during their early weeks of growth in the garden. If you pamper them now, you'll be rewarded with beautiful blooms during midsummer. Sprinkle a 10-10-10 fertilizer at a rate of 1 pound per 100-foot row. Apply it evenly around the plants and scratch it into the soil. Water regularly and thoroughly if spring rains are sparse.

Store Extra Seed

Leftover vegetable and flower seeds can be stored in a cool, dry location for planting next year. One method is to place seed packets in a jar or plastic bag and store them in a cool, dark closet. Another method to keep seeds fresh is to store them in jars in the refrigerator.

Encourage Asparagus Foliage

Stop cutting asparagus when the spears become thinner than the diameter of a pencil. After the last cut is made, fertilize the bed by broadcasting 10-10-10 at the rate of 2 pounds per 100 square feet of row. Allow the tops to grow during the summer to store food in the roots for next year's crop.

Keep Records

In addition to recording planting dates, remember to keep a record of the varieties you grow. By knowing the specific name of each crop, you can plant that variety next season if you like it or avoid it if it wasn't up to par.

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