The Garden Post: February 2017


My ‘Brief But Spectacular’ View on Your Landscape (in February)
You decide your landscape’s fate. Good or bad, your yard looks like it does because of you.  Think about it.  Your landscape is one thing you have total control of.
So take control.
Clean up.  
Yard debris – pine cones, leaves, branches – make a yard look trashy.
By simply raking debris off the lawn and blowing leaves out of the gardens, you lift the spirits of your yard. And yourself.  Plus, you’ll burn roughly 350 – 450 calories per hour.   That’s a slice of apple pie and ice cream that you can enjoy later.
Junk piles that are now exposed.  No one wants to see them.
Dead plants.  Do it now while its cold.  Slinging a shovel heats the body up quickly.
Not with hedge clippers or chain saw.  Hand pruners, lops, pruning saw.  
Refer to article in this edition about pruning and tools.  
Come to the prune clinic led by the master himself – Mr. Ken Matthews February 25 at 10AM.
Proper pruning can enhance your landscape tremendously, and give you a sense of doing something good for your investment.
If your landscape looks bad to you, it probably does to everyone else!  
Hire a professional to analyze your yard.  
Sometimes it may just take replacing a few plants, cutting back this and that and reshaping a bed line here and there.  Or your landscape may be at the point of needing a total renovation.  
In any case, now is the time to really look at your yard, realize the ugly truth, and take control.  
Heather Klose
Landscape Designer
Specializing in telling you the truth about your landscape.

Time to Prune
Learning to properly prune most any yard tree – maple, oak, dogwood, crepe myrtle – is not that difficult.  But you are required to ignore a lot of what you’ve seen or heard about what good pruning is. 
Here are some good pruning rules:
Rule 1:  Prune from the bottom up, not top down.  “Topping” any tree ruins its natural shape.
Rule 2:  Remove dead, dying, or severely wounded branches (more than ½ the bark missing)
Rule 3:  If you find two branches that are growing parallel to one another and almost touching, choose one and remove it.
Rule 4:  Look for branches that cross one another, especially if they rub together, and remove one.
Rule 5:  Clean your pruning tools before putting them away. Now you’ve done all you could or should do.
Here is a list of pruning tools that every gardener should have: 
Hand Pruners
Hand Lopers
Hand Shears
Hand Pruning Saw  

Prevent the spring invasion of crabgrass in your lawn by applying Jonathan Green Crabgrass Pre-Emergent now. Jonathan Green Crabgrass Pre-Emergent works by killing crabgrass seeds and seedlings for up to 3 months. Crabgrass seeds “wake-up” and start growing each year when the soil temperature reaches 50°F. So it is better to apply your crabgrass pre-emergent sooner rather than later!

It’s hard to think of insects in winter, but don’t forget the havoc these tiny creatures can bring to your garden – defoliating leaves, contaminating produce, even destroying complete plants. Before these pests begin to be a problem is the perfect time to take steps to control them.
Why Winter Control?
Late winter is the right time to control insects for two reasons. First, the insects and their eggs are just coming out of dormancy. The shells and protective coverings are softer and more porous in late winter, and so are more vulnerable to the effects of oils and sprays. Second, the oil-water mixture should not freeze on the tree or plants, which could damage the plant and make the spray far less effective. When you spray, the temperature should be above 40 degrees. Delay spraying if freezing night temperatures are predicted. Choose a calm day for spraying to be sure stray breezes and cross winds do not spread the spray to plants you don’t want covered.  We recommend Bonide All Seasons Oil.
Spraying for insects in winter may not be the most glamorous job, but you’ll appreciate the improvement in your trees through the spring and summer when you’ve nipped your insect problems in the bud.
Even though it may be miserable weather outside, you don’t have to be stuck buying overpriced fresh herbs at the store or using less flavorful dried herbs. Why not grow your own inside the house? Most common herbs will grow quite happily in a sunny window at any time year, even when the weather outside is less than garden-friendly.
Where to Grow Your Herbs
Any sunny window can be great for growing indoor herbs, but most people prefer to keep their herbs in the kitchen. After all, it’s probably warm and sunny there. Moreover, think how great it would be to just reach over to your indoor herb garden, take a few snips of this and that, and serve “garden fresh” tasting foods to your family and guests.
Best Indoor Herb Choices
Wondering what herbs will do best indoors? The most popular and easily grown herbs for your kitchen garden include…
Lemon Balm



Mark Your Calendar!
Valentine’s Day
February 14
Something Different for your Valentine
Flowering plants are a great choice for the flower lover in your life. They’re ideal gifts for anyone from a colleague to a spouse. Our collection of Valentine’s Day flowering plants features some of the most beautiful and popular tropical plants. They have a much longer life span than traditional Valentine’s gifts of cut flowers and it is a gift that keeps on giving for years to come.
Miniature Roses, Anthuriums, Calla lilies and African violets are just some of the blooming plants that we carry, and there’s no doubt that your loved one will adore whichever one you choose. Bright and cheery, these flowering plants will endure with only minimal care, so brighten someone’s day with a beautiful blooming Valentine’s Day plant.

Mini Indoor Terrarium Workshop
Saturday, February 18 at 11AM
Learn how to create a terrarium, while getting hands on guidance and tips and tricks on how to care for your mini eco system at home. We provide all the ingredients including a tiny plant, live moss, rocks, soil and a glass container. Class fee is $15.
Call 757.898.7799 to register- space is limited!

Seed Starting Workshop
Saturday, February 25 at 1PM
Learn the what’s, when’s and how’s of starting and caring of your early spring vegetable, herb, and flower gardens. 

Call 757.898.7799 to register.

Cooperative Extension Pruning Clinic
Saturday, February 25 10AM-12PM
Learn pruning secrets to make your shrubs 5 times healthier and 10 times easier to control as well as successful pruning methods you won’t learn in any book.  This clinic has a hands on portion so bring your pruning tools!
Register at or by calling 757.890.4940.

Tips for the Garden 
February is a busy time in the garden!  Besides pruning, here are some other highlights for the month.
Trees and Shrubs
  • Keep watering if there is no rain – Water shrubs in your landscape throughout the winter if the soil is dry. Evergreen plants transpire water from their leaves whenever the air temperature is above 40 degrees F.
  • February is an ideal time to prune fruit trees and if necessary, shade trees.
  • Late February/March is also the time to spray fruit trees, roses and other trees and shrubs with a dormant oil spray.  Dormant oil spray like Bonide All Seasons Oil, should only be applied if the temperature is above freezing.  Dormant oil sprays are recommended if your plants had a problem the previous year with scales, spider mites and other pests.
  • Work your garden for early-spring veggies as soon as possible.  Make sure to do a pH test.  Apply Mag-i-cal, if your soil tests indicate a need.
  • Rabbits Snacking on Evergreens?   Apply Bonide Hot Pepper Wax Spray which will “stick” around all winter!  Spray all plant parts susceptible to nibbling.
  • Continue feeding birds in your garden.  Natural food sources are very scarce at this time of yea r.  Water is also important for birds, so if you have a birdbath in your garden, be sure to use a de-icer to prevent the water from freezing.
  • Take Action Against Invasives.  Remove weedy vines now while many garden plants are still leafless. Control or eliminate English Ivy.  Do not allow it to climb trees so it can escape and take over.
  • Shake Up Your Compost.  Turn your compost pile once this month. You can also start new piles from fallen leaves any time.
  • Start Seeds Indoors.  Inexpensive fluorescent ‘shop lights’ work well if you don’t have a sunny window.  Keep lights very close to the tops of seedlings, and move the lights up as the plants grow. Seeds to start now:  Broccoli, Cabbage, Bok Choi, Lettuces and Cool season flowers like Calendulas, Forget-Me-Not and Phlox.  Wait to start warm season seeds indoors until early March.  Plan your vegetable crop rotation now for the coming season.
  • Happy Houseplants – Give houseplants lots of TLC, since the end of winter is their toughest time. Remove leggy growth (which you can root), pinch them back, and take out dead branches, leaves, and flowers.
20% OFF

 All Pruning Tools

Expires February 28, 2017.
Not valid in conjunction with any other offers, gift certificates, previous purchases, 

bagged goods or bulk items.  Limit one coupon per customer.