Ten things to do in the garden in May

1. Plant flowers: This is a perfect time for flowering annuals and perennials. Begonias, zinnias, marigolds, moss-roses, purslanes and vinca are all good choices.  Perennials might include lantanas, salvias, and verbenas.

2. Vegetable garden care: Water deeply to encourage a deep, drought-tolerant root system. Still time to add a few warm season crops: sweet and hot peppers, green beans, okra, eggplant, and black-eyed peas. Fertilize tomatoes.

3. Mulch: Place around all plants to conserve water and keep the temperature around the plant roots comfortable. Mixing some compost with the mulch will help replace nutrients as the plants grow.

4. Care of roses:  Dead-head spring flowering roses to encourage a new flush of flowers. Apply fertilizer to produce new flowers. Watch for powdery mildew,  black spot and western flower thrip. Treat with organic sprays: Neem oil and wettable-sulphur.

5. Move houseplants outside: Put them out for a spring breather. Move them slowly towards their new light exposure. Too much sun too fast will burn the leaves. This is also a good time for transplanting. 

6. Insect control: All this new spring growth is attractive to every kind of critter imaginable. Be nice to the environment (and to yourself) and only use organic sprays. If you have larvae (caterpillars) eating holes in your plants and trees, look for products that have B.T. as the main ingredient. If sucking insects like aphids, spider mites, whitefly, scale, and mealy bug are the problem, use Neem oil or Spinosad.

7. Maintain irrigation: If you own an automatic sprinkler system, it would save water and money to have it tuned up. Set the controller for deep, infrequent watering to encourage a deep, drought-resistant root system. Install rain sensor.

8. Fertilize lawn: Use an organic blend with a 3-1-2 ratio. Ten pounds per 1,000 square feet of turf area should be adequate.

9. Feed the birds: With lots of new birds in the area, keep those feeders full.

10. Grow basil: The top herb for the summer months is basil. With the nights getting warmer, this wonderful herb should finally have the temperatures it needs to take off. Happy Gardening Everyone!

Comment on this Article

About Author

Comments are closed.