Lower South

May, 2011
Regional Report

Fertilize Summer Blooming Flower Beds

Warm season flowering plants will benefit from some additional fertilizer to keep the plants vigorous. The plants are expending energy in bloom production, and some extra nutrients will help insure that they continue to bloom well.

Check for Spider Mites

Spider mites love hot weather. The rising temperatures are bringing an increase in their numbers. Keep a close eye on susceptible plants such as tomatoes, beans, morning glory, and marigolds. At the first sign of mites, give the plants a strong blast of water upward toward the undersides of the foliage once a week. This will dislodge mites and slow the population growth for those that remain.

Plant Hanging Baskets

Hanging baskets are great for decorating an outdoor porch or for hanging beneath the canopy of a spreading tree. Make sure to select shade tolerant foliage and flowering plants for shady areas. If you have places where the baskets will get some sun, there are many blooming options to choose from.

Trim and Fertilize Roses

Roses go through bloom cycles. The spring cycle is winding up for many cultivars. Trim off the spent blooms or in the case of shrub type roses, shear the plants lightly. Then fertilize the plants with a quarter cup of turf-type fertilizer. Water it in well and the extra nitrogen will encourage another growth response with more blooms to follow.

Fertilize Warm Season Vegetables

Tomatoes, peppers, squash, cucumbers, okra, and other warm season vegetables will benefit from fertilizing to maintain strong growth and production. Work the fertilizer into the surface inch of soil and then water the area well.

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