Western Mountains and High Plains

June, 2011
Regional Report

Be on the Watch for Paper Wasps

Check underneath eaves, in doghouses, storage and garden sheds, garages, outdoor grills, and other spaces. Now is the time a single fertilized queen will start to build a nest. To control and prevent heavy infestations, seal all openings and holes through which wasps can enter. Just remember, paper wasps are great predators of many insect pests and also pollinate flowers.

Construct Raised Beds

If you're challenged by poor soil in which to garden, make raised beds. These allow for better drainage and let you control what soil is added. Use the various commercially available quality outdoor planting mixes or use compost mixed with native soil to fit your gardening situation.

Grow Beans

Canned and frozen beans can't compare to fresh grown green beans. As the soil warms, it is time to plant bush and pole beans every two to three weeks through June for a continuous harvest. My favorites include Kentucky Wonder, Blue Lake, Royal Burgundy and Yellow Wax.

Mow Frequently

As the spring rain and snow melt makes turf grasses grow, it is important to mow frequently. Let the clippings fall, as they will to add back nutrients as they decompose. Check to make sure the mower blades are sharp.

Check Stone Fruits

If you discover globs of sap oozing from the base of apricot and peach trees, you've got worms! Peach tree crown borers become active in spring and chew their way into the growing cambium. This can severely damage and weaken trees. Carefully digging the larvae (worms) out will help, as will spraying the trunks with a pyrethrum-based insecticide. Read and follow label directions.

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