Gardening Guide

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Monthly Gardening Tips (Conventional & Organic) – September

PLANT:

  • Annuals & Perennials- Fall petunias, mums, asters, snapdragons, crotons, ornamental peppers, marigolds, purple fountain grass, salvias, rudbeckia, coneflowers, coreopsis, sedum, coral bells, and more.
  • Trees, palms, shrubs, vines, ornamental grasses & groundcovers. Last chance to choose Crape Myrtles while in bloom to get the color you want.
  • Cool season veggies – Brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, lettuce and more.
  • Annual or perennial ryegrass and fescue seed in mid-September.

PRUNE:

  • Continuous-blooming bush roses by 1/3 to promote fall flowers, then fertilize & water to stimulate growth.
  • Spent flowers, leaves & seedheads on perennials; cut back leggy annuals to keep compact/encourage blooms
  • Shrubs/trees lightly to maintain shape and to remove dead/damaged limbs. Prune spent Vitex & Crape Myrtle blooms to encourage reblooming.
  • Fireblight damaged trees/shrubs to remove damaged limbs. Prune below damage into healthy tissue. Sanitize pruners in bleach solution after each cut. Spray trees & shrubs w/Bonide Copper Fungicide after pruning.
  • Mow lawn regularly at recommended height (1½” for Bermuda; 2” for St. Augustine and Zoysia).

WATER:

  • Most container plants & flower beds in sun need daily watering. Water shrubs & trees less frequently but deeply to produce hardier, better rooted plants.  Supplement sprinkler watering with hand watering to make sure plants receive adequate water.  Inspect sprinkler system regularly to ensure it is working properly. Use soaker hoses or drip irrigation for more efficient water usage.
  • Trees installed for less than two years must have special care to ensure a strong and healthy root system.  See our Plant Article Tree Care for the First Two Years for all the details.
  • To improve water retention, add Soil Moist & Expanded Shale or Covington’s Soil Builder which contains compost, greensand, and expanded shale (holds 38% of its weight in water). Covington’s Soil Builder also breaks up clay, adds nutrients, & revitalizes microbial activity.
  • Top dress landscape/flower beds with 2-3 inch layer of mulch to help retain moisture, reduce weeds, and maintain soil temperature. Treat lawn & landscaped areas with Hydretain for greater soil moisture retention.

NOTE: Use tree wrap on young shade trees (oaks, maples, etc.) to protect them from sunscald.

CONVENTIONAL FERTILIZATION, PLUS WEED, DISEASE & PEST CONTROL SOLUTIONS

FERTILIZE:

  • Flowers, veggies and herbs with Covington’s Premium Flower & Garden Fertilizer or Ferti-lome Gardeners Special.
  • Newly planted trees and shrubs every 3-4 weeks for the first year with Ferti-lome Root Stimulator.
  • Trees, shrubs, vines, groundcovers, and perennials with Covington’s Tree and Shrub Fertilizer.
  • Bermuda, St. Augustine, and Zoysia with Covington’s Premium Lawn Fertilizer or Covington’s High Performance all nitrogen fertilizer.
  • Roses with Ferti-lome Rose Food or Ferti-lome Rose Food with Systemic Insecticide.
  • Iron-deficient plants with Iron or Ferti.lome Soil Acidifier Plus Iron.
  • Strengthen foliage & increase production on fruit/pecan trees w/Ferti-lome Fruit, Citrus & Pecan Fertilizer.

WEEDS & DISEASE CONTROL:

  • Apply Dimension pre-emergent herbicide by mid-September to prevent grassy weeds & some broadleaf weeds from sprouting in your lawn this winter to next spring; Use Gallery for broadleaf weeds that are tough to control (dandelion, henbit & clovers). Spread separately on the same day, then water in lightly.
  • Spot treat broadleaf weeds such as dandelion, henbit & clover in St. Augustine or Bermuda grass with Ferti-lome Weed Out. Spot treat nutsedge and crabgrass with Sedge Hammer or Bonide Sedge Ender.
  • Apply Bonide Infuse to St. Augustine for fungal infections such as Gray Leaf Spot & Brown Patch. For added protection, spread ½ inch layer of Canadian Brown Sphagnum Peat Moss on infected area & water in.
  • Use Ferti-lome Systemic Fungicide for powdery mildew, disease & fungi on hawthorn, photinias, roses, etc.

INSECT & PEST CONTROL:

  • For armyworms, webworms & cankerworms, use Bonide Eight Insecticide or Hi-Yield 55% Malathion.
  • Use Bonide Insect and Grub Control Granules for grub & cinch bug control.
  • To control fire ant mounds/infestations with Hi-Yield Fire Ant Control.
  • Use Hi-Yield Slug & Snail Killer to control slugs and snails on flowers and foliage, or use Sluggo Plus in children’s play areas and areas near pets.
  • Control aphids, spider mites, mealy bugs, thrips and other problem insects w/Bonide Systemic Insect Control.
  • For best control of scale & to kill borers in the trunks of trees, use Bonide or Ferti-lome Systemic Insect Drench which protect for months.
  • Continue spray program for fruit and nut trees. Use Ferti-lome Triple Action or Bonide Fruit Tree Spray.
  • For grasshoppers, use Hi-Yield 55% Malathion or Bonide Eight Insect Control.
  • For elm tree damage from elm leaf beetle larva use Bonide Eight (contact killer with Permethrin).

ORGANIC FERTILIZATION 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, and roses with Happy Frog Acid Loving Fertilizer.
  • Turf, shrubs, and trees with Good Natured Texas 2-Step Fertilizer,
  • Vegetable gardens with Happy Frog Tomato & Vegetable Fertilizer.
  • Use Corn Gluten Meal 9-0-0 to feed turf and prevent weeds. Also spread Dry Molasses to encourage healthy soil.
  • Apply Garrett Juice Plus once a month to your landscape to increase beneficial micro-organisms in the soil and to reduce the need for water.
  • Add Texas Greensand for deep greening in lawns, trees and landscape plants.

WEEDS & DISEASE CONTROL:

  • Spot treat grassy and broadleaf weeds with 20% Vinegar. Add 2 oz. of Orange Oil per gallon of vinegar to enhance the kill on weeds and grasses.
  • Apply Horticultural Corn Meal on landscape plants, vegetables, and turf grass 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 mound drench. Spray Orange Oil in areas infested with pillbugs, sow bugs, ants and spiders.
  • Repel mosquitoes with Cedar Warrior Granules or spray Bonide Mosquito Beater. Use Mosquito Bits with BTI to kill mosquito larvae in standing water & to control fungus gnats in flower beds and containers.
  • For armyworms, webworms & cankerworms on shrubs/trees, use Captain Jack’s Deadbug Brew or Spinosad.
  • For bugs & fungus use Ferti-lome Triple Action Plus containing Neem Oil. Safe to use on fruit trees.
  • Spray Bonide All Season Oil for scale on holly, crape myrtles & fruit trees. In hot weather, use these oil products in early morning or evening!
  • Control slugs & snails with Sluggo Plus with Spinosad.
  • Use Diatomaceous Earth for crawling insects/grasshoppers.
  • To deter pesky flower and plant-munching rabbits, use Rabbit Scram and/or Bonide Repels-All spray.
  • Get rid of armadillos with eco-friendly Armadillo Repellent in a convenient hose end sprayer.

For professional landscape design & installation; lawn, tree & shrub fertilization; or weed/disease/insect control, please call our Landscape Services Team at 972-475-5888 Ext. 119.