Gardening Guide

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Monthly Gardening Tips (Conventional & Organic) – January

PLANT:
• Trees and shrubs so they will be well established by summer. Avoid planting cold-tender plants such as: gardenia, oleander, pittosporum and palms. Transplant existing shrubs/trees that need relocating.
• Pecan and fruit trees, blackberries, and grapevines.
• Pansies, violas, cyclamen, dianthus, ornamental kale/cabbage for winter color.
• Spring-flowering bulbs including daffodils & narcissus. Tulips & Dutch hyacinths that have been refrigerated for at least 45 days at 45º can also be planted now.
• Onions, potatoes, asparagus later this month.

PRUNE:
• Trees as needed to remove mistletoe, dead or damaged limbs, and unwanted roots–limit removal to 1 or 2 significant roots each year. Don’t “top” trees. Good time to prune oak trees to avoid Oak Wilt problems.
• Shrubs/vines requiring heavy shearing & re-shaping (not spring flowering shrubs/vines e.g., spirea, azaleas, hydrangea, quince, forsythia, Caroline Jessamine, wisteria, which can be pruned after they finish blooming).
• Fruit trees to encourage stronger limbs. Peaches and plums to 8 or 9 ft. by removing vertical shoots.
• Grapes to remove 80% to 85% of their cane growth.

WATER:
• Container plants, flower beds, shrubs & trees as needed to keep healthy. Water before forecasted frosts & freezes to reduce damage to plants and trees. To improve water retention in your plantings, add Soil Moist & Expanded Shale (holds 38% of its weight in water). Or use Covington’s Soil Builder which contains compost, greensand & expanded shale, and also breaks up clay, adds nutrients, & revitalizes microbial activity.
• Top dress landscape & flower beds with at least a 2 inch layer of mulch to help retain moisture, reduce weeds & maintain soil temperature. Keep frost cloth on hand to cover & protect tender plants from freezing temps.
• Trees installed for less than two years must have special care to ensure a strong and healthy root system. See our Plant Article on Tree Care for the First Two Years for all the details.

CONVENTIONAL FERTILIZATION, PLUS WEED, DISEASE & PEST CONTROL SOLUTIONS

FERTILIZE:
• Pansies & other annuals with Covington’s Premium Flower & Garden Fertilizer or Hi-Yield Blood and Bone Meal.
• Newly planted trees and shrubs every 3-4 weeks for the first year with Ferti.lome Root Stimulator.
• Houseplants with Ferti.lome 20-20-20 Water Soluble Plant Food.
• Existing ryegrass and fescue with high nitrogen Covington’s Premium Lawn Fertilizer 21-7-14

WEEDS & DISEASE CONTROL:
• Spot treat broadleaf weeds such as dandelion, henbit & clover in St. Augustine or Bermuda grass with Ferti.lome Weed Free Zone (effective to 40º).
• Keep fallen leaves off your lawn—they compact and trap moisture which can lead to turf diseases. Apply Bonide Infuse to St. Augustine for fungal infections such as Gray Leaf Spot & Brown Patch.
• To prevent crown rot in palms, drench the heart of the palm with Ferti.lome Systemic Fungicide after the cold snap is over. Use same product for powdery mildew, disease & fungi on hawthorne, photinias, roses, etc.

INSECT & PEST CONTROL:
• Control aphids, spider mites, mealy bugs, other problem insects with Bonide Systemic Insecticide.
• For fungus gnats in houseplants, use Hi-Yield Systemic Insect Granules.
• For best control of scale use Hi-Yield Dormant Oil Spray.
• Use Hi-Yield Fire Ant Control on fire ant mounds and infestations.
• For rabbits, use Rabbit Scram and/or Bonide Repels-All Spray.

ORGANIC FERTILIZATION, PLUS WEED, DISEASE & PEST CONTROL SOLUTIONS

FERTILIZE:
• Newly planted trees and shrubs with Liquid Fish & Seaweed to help prevent transplant shock, increase beneficial microorganisms, and encourage root development.
• Flowers & perennials with Happy Frog Acid Loving Fertilizer.
• Turf, shrubs & trees with Good Natured Texas 2-Step Fertilizer.
• Vegetable gardens with Happy Frog Tomato & Vegetable Fertilizer.

WEEDS & DISEASE CONTROL:
• Spot treat grassy and broadleaf weeds with 20% Vinegar. Add 2 oz. of Orange Oil per gallon of vinegar during warmer days to enhance the kill on weeds and grasses.
• Keep fallen leaves off your lawn—they compact and trap moisture which can lead to turf diseases. Apply Horticultural Corn Meal on landscape plants and vegetables for disease control.

INSECT & PEST CONTROL:
• Use ferti.lome Come and Get It Spinosad Bait for protection from fire ants.  To treat individual fire ant mounds, use 3 to 4 ounces of Orange Oil per gallon of water as a drench.  Spray Orange Oil in areas infested with pillbugs, sow bugs, ants, and spiders.
• For cabbage loopers on cole crops, use Natural Guard B.T. at dusk or Spinosad.
• Protect ripening fruit from birds with Bird X Netting.
• Spray Bonide All Season Oil for scale on hollies, crape myrtles & fruit trees.
• Control slugs & snails with Bonide Slug Magic or Sluggo Plus with Spinosad.
• Use Diatomaceous Earth for crawling insects.
• Use eco-friendly Armadillo Repellant in a convenient hose end sprayer to get rid of armadillos.
• Use Rabbit Scram and/or Bonide Repels-All Spray to deter pesky flower-mulching rabbits.
• Use Mosquito Bits Granules containing BTI for fungus gnats in house plants.

This is a great time to plant!
Our nursery experts are available 7 days a week to provide assistance
with your plant needs so you can be successful in your garden and landscape.
OR
Call our Landscape Services Team at (972) 475-5888 Ext. 119
For professional landscape design & installation
Lawn, Tree and Shrub Fertilization
Weed, Disease and Insect Control