Lower South

August, 2007
Regional Report

Plant Fall Potatoes

Mid to late August is the time to plant potatoes in the South for a fall crop. If we wait much longer they won't have time to develop tubers before the first fall frost shuts them down. When possible, select small whole potatoes for planting because cut pieces tend to rot in the hot soil, even if allowed to dry before planting.

Start Seedlings of Cole Crops Indoors

Grow your own transplants of broccoli, cabbage, kohlrabi, and other cole crops by starting seeds indoors now. Once the seeds germinate, move them to a bright, shady outdoor location and gradually into some morning sun. They'll be ready to transplant into the garden in mid to late September for a jump start on the season.

Evaluate Your Landscape's Performance

Summer can really take a toll on our landscapes. Now is a great time to take an early morning stroll to evaluate how our plants are holding up. Drought-prone turf areas may be better planted in water-thrifty ornamental beds. Some perennials and shrubs may need relocating to a better spot, or perhaps some soil improvements are in order.

Treat Webworms While Young

Webworms are building up again in pecan, mulberry, wild cherry, and certain other trees. Break their webs with a long pole to allow predators like wasps to reach them. Or treat with a product containing Bt or Spinosad when caterpillars are still very young. As the caterpillars get older, the lower toxicity natural products won't be very effective.

Prepare Herb Gardens for Fall

Shear back herb plants that are ragged looking from the effects of summer. Then provide a little fertilizer and water it in well. They will respond with fresh new growth in the coming months. Fall is a great time for planting herbs so make plans for adding a few in the coming months. Grow your own wonderful seasonings for cooking and for making herbal oils and vinegars this fall.

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