Coastal and Tropical South

December, 2012
Regional Report

Investigate Mature Tree Size

Give a tree to someone you love, but know what you are giving by learning the ultimate height of your choice. In tree terms, small is 15 feet tall or less, medium is 30 feet, and tall will be 50 feet or more. You can give a small tree in a nice pot as a container plant, but give the others for placement in the landscape.

Pick the Right Pot

It is important to choose containers that can take our weather changes in stride. Larger sizes will hold heat longer in the rootball, thus risking less cold damage to roots. Pots with thicker sides will stay cooler in hot weather but also offer insulation during cold spells. Small, thin pots will always need more attention.

Keep Decorations Safe

From garlands and trees to light strings, the holidays can be hazardous. Treat live evergreens with antidessicant sprays and keep a close eye on lights intertwined with the greens. Soak the trunk of your Christmas tree overnight in a bucket of warm water before you put it in the stand, and keep the stand filled for safety and to keep the tree looking good.

Fertilize Flowers Monthly

People sometimes overlook the fact that pansies, stock, snapdragons, and ornamental cabbage grow continually throughout the winter. To keep them thriving, fertilize monthly, water regularly, and protect pots from prolonged cold. Select a flowering formula fertilizer, one with a higher middle number on its label. Pluck off spent flowers to stimulate more blooms.

Prune Sasanquas Soon

Be sure to prune Camellia sasanqua within one month after bloom time is over. Flower buds for next year begin forming soon after that, and you will cut them off if you wait to prune. Prune to maintain a pleasing shape. You can take off up to one-third its overall size without compromising the plant.

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