Western Mountains and High Plains

June, 2009
Regional Report

Develop a Lawn Watering Schedule

It's time to start watering lawns as temperatures rise and the soil dries out. The actual amount of water a lawn needs depends on many factors, including the kind of lawn grasses, temperature, exposure and slope, drying winds, sun intensity, and traffic patterns. Probe the soil to find out what schedule best meets your lawn's needs.

Control Aphids

Begin to check roses and ornamental shrubs regularly for aphids. To discourage these pests, reduce the amount of nitrogen fertilizer you may have been applying. Aphids love the lush new growth stimulated by nitrogen. Aphids are easily controlled by hosing down with a forceful stream of water or a homemade biodegradable soap spray.

Deadhead Spring Bulbs

Remove faded and spent flower heads from your spring-flowering tulip and daffodil bulbs, but leave the foliage intact until the leaves turn yellow. The leaves store energy in the bulb for next year's blooms. Add some 5-10-5 organic fertilizer to the bulb bed, too.

Plant Warm-Season Vegetables

In most parts of the region, except higher elevations, now is the time to transplant frost-sensitive vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant. If you plant these in the high country where temperatures can still be frosty at night, protect plants with row covers, plastic gallon jugs, or 5-gallon buckets.

Support Tall Delphiniums

Use tomato cages or bamboo stakes to provide support for tall-growing perennial flowers that tend to droop when flowering, especially delphiniums. The plant foliage will grow in to hide the wire cage. Leave the cage all season long and remove it during fall cleanup.

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