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The Average Height for Tomato Plants

Tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum) are especially delicious when allowed to ripen fully on the plant. Among the best ways to enjoy these wonderfully delicious fruits is to grow them on your home garden. Tomato plants can be found in a number of varieties that reach different heights. Selecting the ideal type for your situation is a significant initial step in starting your tomato garden.

Determinate Plants

Some tomato plants are called determinate because they’re programmed to achieve a particular height. When a determinate plant creates a final cluster of flowers at its terminal growing point, a signal is sent to the plant that slows and eventually stops its growth. These ranges reach heights between 3 feet and 5 feet at maturity. Determinate tomatoes are normally bushy plants that ripen fruit over a relatively short period, so starting several plants in series, spacing them apart by a couple weeks, can help lengthen your harvest. Fantastic varieties of the type comprise “Brandywine” and “Brandywine Pink,” both heirloom varieties, “Roma” and “San Marzano,” both paste-tomato manufacturers, “Mountain Belle,” which creates cherry tomatoes, along with “Mountain Gold,” with yellow tomatoes.

Indeterminate Plants

Tomato plants that continue to grow and become poorer throughout the growing season have been classified as indeterminate. These are older varieties that resemble the first, wild plant, putting flowers just on lateral branches and never to the terminal growing point. When grown on supports, the following plants need pruning late in the season to control their growth and also force plant energy into fruit production. If left unpruned, they could achieve heights of well above 7 or 8 feet. Indeterminate plants have a tendency to ripen their fruit later in the season and also produce more ample foliage than determinate types. Varieties include “Ancient Girl,” that an early-ripening red tomato, “Better Boy” and “Supersonic,” strong, disease-resistant plants, and “Beefmaster” and “Supersteak,” which produce extra large tomatoes that are exceptional sliced for new eating.

Patio Tomatoes

Dwarf tomato varieties are especially suited to growing in containers, for example on a sunny porch or terrace. These plants typically reach heights of 1 to 2 feet at maturity. Some especially dwarfed varieties do well in hanging baskets or other smaller containers. In addition to supplying a gardener with delicious, edible fruit, the following plants also provide ornamental value. Good varieties include “Tiny Tim,” with crimson cherry-type tomatoes approximately 1 inch in diameter, “Red Robin,” which creates mild-flavored tomatoes, “Patio Hybrid,” with especially large tomatoes to get a dwarf kind, and “Small Fry,” adaptable to hanging baskets.

Tree-Form Tomato

The tree tomato (Cyphomandra betacea) is part of a different genus than the commonly grown tomato plant, nevertheless creates true tomatoes. Originally from high-altitude regions of South America, it does best in temperatures above 50 degrees Fahrenheit and can achieve a height of 10 feet or more. A partially woody plant, the tree tomato creates egg-shaped fruit pointed at both ends, with skin of various colors, from orange or yellow to crimson and also reddish-purple, and delicious, sweet, low-acid flesh.

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Four Top Tips to Grow Tomatoes in Containers and Pots

The fruit of the tomato plant (Solanum lycopersicum, formerly Lycopersicon esculentum) is the most popular crop in U.S. home gardens, as stated by the University of Missouri Extension site. Putting tomato crops in containers eliminates the need for an extensive inground garden to grow tomatoes. A massive tomato cultivar takes approximately 3 to 5 feet of space, based on its container’s dimensions. The care that container-grown tomato crops require differs somewhat from that of inground tomatoes, but they are able to benefit you with bountiful yields. Tomato plants are hardy at U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8 through 11.

Choose the Proper Containers

One key to successful container gardening is to utilize large enough containers. Rumors have big root systems and need a sufficient amount of dirt for them. A standard-size tomato plant needs a 4- to 5-gallon pot and does best in a container that’s at least 20 to 22 inches in diameter. Dwarf plants need 1- to 2-gallon pots or hanging baskets. If your area has hot summers, then utilize non-porous containers like plastic or glazed ceramic to cut down on the pots’ water loss. Wood containers like one-half barrels lined with plastic to slow wood deterioration are another choice. Clay pots are porous, allowing water to evaporate from the soil through the pots; tomato crops in them need more frequent watering than those in containers that are crocheted. Each container needs at least four bottom drainage holes; drill extra holes if needed.

Choose an Appropriate Variety

Some tomato cultivars grow much better in containers than other kinds. Small varieties to attempt are cherry tomatoes like “Tiny Tim,” “Tumbling Tom” and “Sweet 100 Patio.” Compact varieties developed for container gardening comprise “Pixie,” “Patio Prize” and “Patio Princess.” Dwarf varieties comprise “Florida Basket” and “Micro Tom.” Among the large cultivars that usually grow well in containers are “Celebrity,” “Early Girl,” “Jetstar” and “Sweet Tangerine.” Experiment with a number of your favorite varieties to see which ones grow best for you personally.

Utilize Clean Growing Materials

Container-grown tomatoes are more likely than inground tomatoes to encounter anxiety and to become vulnerable to diseases. Give your plants a good start using clean containers and potting mixes. Before planting, scrub all portions of the pots with water and soap, and rinse them well with water. The upcoming tasks are to disinfect them with a solution that’s 1 part household bleach and nine parts water, and to rinse them thoroughly with water. Garden soil shouldn’t be utilized because it comprises fungal and bacterial pathogens and often doesn’t drain well enough. Instead, use a bought, well-draining, soilless potting mix which contains vermiculite or perlite. Cut a layer of mesh window screen to fit the interior bottom of every pot, and set the screen in place before inserting the soilless potting mix so that the mixture doesn’t leak from the pot’s drainage holes.

Supply Enough Water

Tomato plants grown in containers are far more exposed than inground tomatoes to environmental conditions because they are not surrounded by just as much insulating material growing medium. Your container tomato crops’ potting mix may have to be watered every day and sometimes twice per day, particularly if the containers are at full sunlight or so are clay pots. Windy conditions also imply more frequent watering. Water each container potting mixture until you see water coming from the container’s bottom drainage holes. Curiously, tomatoes’ potting mix shouldn’t be constantly wet, which encourages root rot. If moist potting mixture clings to your finger or a wooden pen once you inserted it into the first two inches of a tomato plant’s potting mix and eliminated it, then the potting mix doesn’t need watering.

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How Can We Get More Nitrogen in Our Soil to Boost Nice Grass?

Since grass relies heavily on nitrogen to stay healthy and green, the chemical is often the first nutrient applied to a lawn. However, before applying hydrogen to your grass, test your soil to verify that it’s, in actuality, nitrogen deficient. If the soil sample indicates nitrogen is necessary, employ one of several effective methods to bring the mineral to your soil. Always follow label directions when using any chemicals, such as fertilizers.

Organic Approaches

Over-seeding your lawn using Dutch clover (Trifolium repens) is a simple, organic and reliable way of locking nitrogen in your soil. The clover is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 5 through 9. Another effective organic strategy — which keeps the grass mixture more traditional looking — would be to employ up to 1/2-inch of finished compost — the kind that looks, smells and feels like rich, dark, crumbly ground — into your lawn, a procedure known as overdressing. Another easy way to help your lawn get the nitrogen it needs would be to leave the grass clippings on the lawn after each mowing; nitrogen is reabsorbed as the clippings decompose. This alone can provide as much as half of the nitrogen a lawn needs.

Weed and Feed

A more common method for introducing nitrogen into the soil is to utilize a commercial weed and feed product. This product operates by employing a pre-emergent herbicide that destroys the weeds, while at the same time adding crucial nutrients like nitrogen and potassium back into your soil. Since weed and feed products are used in early spring before weeds have broken through the dirt, the absorbed nitrogen will provide your lawn an early-season increase.

Standard Fertilizer

Nitrogen needs of grass varies considerably based on the species: fescues, generally hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 3 to 7, depending on number, often need considerably less hydrogen than perennial ryegrass, hardy in USDA zones 4 to 8, while a few warm-season grasses require more of the mineral than cool-season varieties. Because many warm-season grasses tend to be heavy consumers of nitrogen, you are able to apply the mineral on a monthly basis throughout the growing season. Disperse involving .05 to 1.0 pounds of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet per month (based on number), April through August. For lawns using cool-season grasses, apply .09 pounds of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet twice a year.

Too Much of a Good Thing

Care should be taken with any of these methods used to boost nitrogen in the lawn, especially with fertilizers, because too much nitrogen can cause additional issues. Although a fast greening of the grass often occurs with an overabundance of nitrogen, the lawn actually become less strain tolerant as its carbohydrate reserves are more rapidly depleted. This can cause a diminished root system or grass blades which become overly succulent — causing the blades to lose moisture too fast. Excessive nitrogen can also cause thatch accumulation.

Manage With Care

When using chemicals like weed and feed fertilizer or products, care should be taken to closely follow the manufacturer’s education. Safety equipment, like gloves and goggles, could be required. Other factors include applying the chemical when it is not windy, taking care not to pollute waterways or storm sewer systems and keeping young children and pets off the treated area for the manufacturer’s designated time frame. When using weed and feed product, read the caution region to ensure it won’t cause damage to the type of grass on your lawn.

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When Does Crepe Myrtle Leaf & Bloom in Zone 9?

The crepe myrtle (Lagerstroemia spp.) Is an attractive, multi-stemmed shrub or tree that’s named for its blossomsthat resemble colorful crepe paper. Several types exist, including the common crepe myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica), also a 25-foot-tall plant, and also the Japanese crepe myrtle (Lagerstroemia fauriei), which is now 50 feet tall. These plants develop in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 7 through 9 and 6 through 9, respectively. In zone 9, crepe myrtles leaf out in spring and bloom in summer, together with some minor differences from year to year.

Ancient Spring Growth

The crepe myrtle is deciduous, dropping its leaves and becoming contaminated during winter, when it consumes little if any water through its roots. At USDA zone 9, winter temperatures may drop to 20 or even 30 degrees Fahrenheit for short periods of time, with the last frost typically occurring in early March. The first signs of new life on a crepe myrtle look a couple weeks later, once the inactive, or inactive, buds start to swell as the shrub begins taking up water in the soil, which starts to warm. Although spring temperatures may vary from year to year, the crepe myrtle typically has small, new leaves revealing on its branches a couple weeks after the last frost in zone 9, or at late March or early April.

A Great Spring Start

Mulching the area under a crepe myrtle will keep its roots warm during winter and early spring, however, do not mulch the plant till it’s become leafless and dormant in the fall or early winter. Mulching earlier while it’s still growing may keep the roots too warm and prevent dormancy, risking cold injury to the plant when winter arrives. Add 3 or 4 inches of straw or shredded bark on the ground under the plant’s canopy, keeping mulch back in its base to prevent moisture accumulation. In early spring, remove the winter mulch to get rid of overwintering insects and their eggs, renewing it with a brand new layer to help conserve soil moisture during the upcoming season. In spring, when you observe buds begin to swell, then water the crepe myrtle regularly to get it off to a good start, but do not overwater. Aim for approximately 1 inch of water weekly, including rainfall.

Summer Flowering

Like all plants, the crepe myrtle gets a signal to begin flowering when days get more as the season progresses. The specific timing of flowering may vary a bit among the various cultivars, but generally crepe myrtles start blooming in mid or early season, and they frequently continue thriving through summer and into early fall, with some varieties flowering until the first frost. You can prolong blooming on a crepe myrtle by removing spent flowers before they dry and produce seeds, called deadheading. This stimulates the plant to set out another flush of blossoms, although this may be smaller compared to the initial crop of blossoms.

Potential Problems

The crepe myrtle is generally a powerful, easy-to-grow plant, but it can attract aphids, soft-bodied insects that suck sap from leaves and can cause them to wilt and dry up. If uncontrolled, aphids may also assault blossom buds and destroy them until they open. Aphids are best controlled by spraying the crepe myrtle with insecticidal soap, diluted at a speed of 6 tablespoons per gallon of water. Spray until all plant parts are dripping wet, and repeat each week or 2 as required. Crepe myrtles can also be prone to powdery mildew, a fungus that causes fluffy white spots on leaves, and sooty mould, another fungus that grows as blackish, fuzzy places. Both may interfere with development of foliage and flowering. They’re best prevented by planting a crepe myrtle where air cools well, regularly clearing away debris from under the crust, and watering only with a soaker hose or drip irrigation to keep foliage dry.

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How to Care for Michelia 'Alba'

Commonly known as white champaca, Michelia champaca “Alba” is an evergreen tree having an intensely fragrant blooms and glossy foliage. It rises at U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 10 through 11, in which it adds a tropical appearance to glowing garden beds with mildly acidic soil. White champaca requires moderate care year to keep it looking its best, but you will be rewarded for your efforts with masses of creamy white blooms from winter.

Watering Tips

Once established, white champaca does not require heavy watering . however, it ought to be watered during the summer to stop stress and dehydration. Root problems can arise in constantly wet soil, therefore it’s vital to let the soil dry out to the surface between waterings. Water till the soil feels moderately moist at the top couple of inches. A potted white champaca tree is particularly prone to root and dehydration problems, therefore grow it into a pot with drainage holes and water it deeply but infrequently. In areas having rainy, mild winters, stop watering in winter unless it has not rained for more than two weeks.

Fertilizer Needs

White champaca is a moderately heavy feeder and requires constant levels of nutrients through the busy growing season. The type of fertilizer and application frequency depends upon the age of this tree along with its growing conditions. Younger trees that are still establishing a successful root system require a complete fertilizer with an N-P-K ratio of 15-15-15, while established trees benefit from a booming fertilizer having an N-P-K ratio of 7-9-5. A white champaca in full sunlight needs more frequent feedings, irrespective of age. Mix 1/2 tsp of fertilizer in 1 gallon of water. Replace a couple of weekly waterings with the fertilizer solution in early summer and spring. Reduce feeding by one-half in late summer and early autumn, and quit feeding entirely in winter.

Pruning and Grooming

A white champaca tree has a symmetrical, spreading canopy having a clearly defined trunk. It seldom requires pruning since it has a naturally neat form. Some grooming during the growing season improves the tree’s shape and keeps the plant looking tidy. Snip off any debatable growth, like suckers, water sprouts or dead branches, at their base using sturdy, sharp pruning shears. Heavy pruning reduces flowering, so avoid removing a considerable number of live growth. Always soak your pruning shears in undiluted household disinfectant for five minutes, rinse and rub them dry before using them to protect against the transmission of diseases.

Potential Problems

A white champaca tree contains few serious problems. A younger tree may have problems with root diseases, but most can be prevented by watering correctly. Mealybugs pose the most significant issue. They reveal their existence with the white, cottony matter they deposit on the leaves. Small populations of mealybugs may be removed with a strong jet of water, although heavier infestations may require chemical intervention. Mix 2Ā 1/2 ounces of neem oil in 1 gallon of water. Apply the solution with a pump sprayer, saturating the tops and bottoms of the leaves. Duplicate the treatment two to three times weekly before the infestation subsides.

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What Exactly Does Botanicare Silica Blast Do?

Silica Blast is a nutrient supplement for crops produced by the Botanicare firm to be used in hydrogardens and container houses and is intended to protect plants against extreme conditions such as drought, frost or heatwaves. Strengthen stalks the Silica Blast supplement claims to increase dry matter yield of plants and stabilize the pH of recirculating hydroponic gardens. The supplement is marketed.

What It Is

According to the manufacturer, Botanicare Silica Blast comprises at least 0.5 percent soluble potash and 2.0 percent chromium derived from sodium silicate and potassium silicate. The potash is present because of the silicon derived from potassium silicate. It is, based on Botanicare, among the only sources of protein for crops. The Material Safety Data Sheet concurs with the breakdown of components of the manufacturer, stating that the formulation is a combination of silicates of sodium and potassium.

What it Does

Silica Blast is intended to increase the likelihood a plant will triumph in an environment where nutrient needs or its water aren’t being met due to soil or weather conditions. Additionally, it is utilized in hydroponics, where soil nutrients aren’t present at all, due to the dearth of dirt used in these growing conditions. The manufacturer claims the silicate in Botanicare Silica Blast functions on a cellular level – helping form a silicate matrix within walls. The crops may continue to photosynthesize in stressful circumstances, by strengthening the cells.

How Much Use

How much is dependent upon the type of garden you’re working with. Container gardens demand a mix of 1/2 to 1 teaspoon per gallon of water to get program (2.5-5 mL per 4 liters of water.) . Hydrogardens are specific. If you’re growing medium plants which aren’t yet mature, 1/2 tsp per gallon of water (or 2.4 mL per 4 liters of water) is suggested. Mature plants require 1 teaspoon per gallon of water (or 5 mL per 4 liters of water.) The manufacturer recommends employing Silica Blast every or every other watering for container gardens and applying it to the reservoir of hydrogardens each five to seven days or to adjust the pH to 6.0

Factors

Silica Blast is an irritant which can cause irritation to skin and eyes, as mentioned in the Material Safety Data Sheet. Prevent contact with skin and use goggles when working with and mixing dry Silica Blast. If contact with eyes occurs, flush with lots of fresh running water. If contact with skin occurs, wash with lots of soap and warm water and eliminate any clothing or shoes. Seek medical therapy if irritation continues.

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Techniques for Apples

Pulling on a fresh, crispy and juicy apple in a tree may be a tasty fall treat, especially if you’ve got a tree in your own backyard. Apple trees require a little bit of labour and patience, but can thrive in regions of the nation. Exotic apple trees in early spring or late autumn and you may expect your first harvest in three years. So that you may grow the tastiest apples possible Meanwhile, take care of your tree.

Site

Choose an area in your yard that receives full sun and other buildings or trees not shade that. The place ought to have soil, although apple trees thrive in many kinds of soil, the National Gardening Association accounts. Select a spot in your lawn to help stop damage. If your tree is planted at a low spot, the cool air will circulate it around, which may destroy the blossoms or immature fruit.

Cross-Pollination

Plant two kinds of apple trees in order that they can pollinate each other. Apple trees are not self-fertile so each tree needs another apple tree to grow. Choose two kinds of apple trees about the exact same time for the large success.

Pruning

Prune your apple tree in late winter until the buds start to grow. Opt for the component of the tree which will develop into the trunk, or the vertical branch to become your boss. Remove which are growing three to four inches under the boss from trying to carry over, to protect against another central boss, which may impact the growth and stability of their tree.

Fertilizer

Sprinkle 2 ounces of 16-16-16 fertilizer around the base of your apple tree in late winter or early spring before the tree starts to bud, the University of California Cooperative Extension recommends. Apply the fertilizer about six inches from the base to reduce damage to the young tree. Water the fertilizer into the soil.

Pest and Weed Control

Choose species of apple trees to prevent damage from pests. Diseases and pests can result in severe damage. Eliminate and dropped leaves from the floor to discourage pests away from making their home in and around the tree. Weeds will suck the nutrients and moisture in the soil and controlling them will safeguard your apple tree’s health. Bring on any weeds from around the base of your tree when you detect them. Apply a layer of mulch to discourage future expansion.

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The Way to Grow Sycamores From Seed

Sycamore trees belong to the genus Platanus, which comprises deciduous species found around the world in temperate climates. Platanus racemosa, also referred to as the western sycamore or California sycamore, is widely utilized for palmate leaves its bicolored bark and stately, somewhat open growth habit. Like many species within its genus, the western sycamore will swiftly reach a mature height of 40 to 100 feet and grows easily from seed. However, homeowners must keep the trees beneath somewhat moist conditions from germination until their next year of life when the trees are to reach their whole potential.

Start sycamore trees from seed in early spring since the seed balls are going to have dried out to the tree during the winter months. Locate and collect a seed ball with a golden-brown or grayish coloration. When squeezed, Prevent people who have signs of mildew or an excessively wet, squishy sense.

Put the sycamore seed ball in a paper bag. The top closed. Gently tap on the seed ball with a rubber mallet to break apart the seeds. Pick a couple of seeds that are healthy-looking and then discard the rest into compost pile or a waste bin.

Select a planting site big enough to accommodate a sycamore tree. Start looking for a place with at least 20 square feet of clearance from power lines, looming trees and structures. Avoid areas where the soil remains sopping wet all the time since sycamores planted there will probably develop brittle wood.

Scoop up dirt from the planting site. Collect enough dirt to fill a 6-inch round nursery container one-third of the way full. Blend the soil with equal measurements of coarse and vermiculite sand. Mix until they are well incorporated and the mixture takes on a uniform look.

Pour water on the soil mixture until it flows freely from the bottom of the hammock container. Before planting the sycamore seed let the soil mixture drain for 20 or more minutes.

Sow the sycamore seeds in a depth of 1/8 inch at the prepared nursery container. Firm the soil atop the seeds. Spread a layer of coarse sand throughout the surface of the soil to hold in moisture while the sycamore seeds germinate.

Put the nursery container outside. When the year is tender water the seeds to a depth of two inches every two months , otherwise let Mother Nature do the watering.

Watch for signs of germination in four to six weeks. Thin out the seedlings if greater than one of those seeds germinates. Remove all but seedling.

Transfer the sycamore once it grows to 6 inches in height, seedling into a 1-gallon nursery container. Keep it well-watered into a depth of two inches at all times, allowing the soil to dry out completely for no longer than three days.

Plant the sycamore tree in its planting website that is chosen once it bears sets of fully-formed leaves and tops 12 inches in height. Water the sapling into a depth of two inches every 10 to 15 days during its first summer remove all watering once the season begins in October.

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Welcome the Turning Season — Ideas for Your September Garden

Most anglers can concur that September is among the best weeks for being outdoors. Around the United States, shifting seasons breathe life into gardens and anglers’ enthusiasm, and with this particular one the oppressive grip of summer’s warmth finally loosens.

It’s planting time again. Everything from cool-season edibles to broadleaf evergreens and indigenous grasses are planted this month. Consider beginning a wildflower garden from seed, and welcome winged visitors with berry-producing shrubs and by departing skeletal seed heads around winter.

The countdown to the first frost may have already begun, but there’s still so much left to enjoy. Here is what to do in your garden this September.

Locate your September garden checklist:
California | Central Plains | Great Lakes | Mid-Atlantic | Northeast
Pacific Northwest | Rocky Mountains | Southeast | Southwest | Texas

Jocelyn H. Chilvers

Northwest. Once it comes to edibles, “broccoli, cabbage, spinach and Swiss chard are all drop favorites,” says landscape designer Karen Chapman. “Radishes and lettuce additionally will have plenty of time to develop and be harvested until the cold weather comes.”

She adds, “September is also the ideal time to plant onions and garlic. Cover these with bird figurines raised a couple of inches with blocks of wood or older nursery pots. Birds seem to love to peck at these tips! Once the roots have created, the netting can be taken off.”

Get her Northwest September checklist | More cool-season crops

California. “If you’re considering planting a lawn shortly (fall is the ideal time to start), think about some of those newish less-thirsty kinds, such as California native grasses,” writes garden editor Bill Marken.

‘Native Mow Free’, shown here, is a mixture of several varieties of fescue grasses which take some shade as well as full sun,” he says. “It can be mowed for a regular turf look or left unmowed for a shaggy, lumpy appearance. It’s ideal to mow it at least a couple times annually. It works nicely on a incline. It’s not a good play lawn.

Most important when beginning a lawn? “Whether you start with seeds (cheaper, but more demanding of weed control) or sod (proper watering is not quite as simple as it seems), the primary and most arduous step is preparing the ground,” Marken says.

Get his California September checklist | More tips for your California garden

Noelle Johnson Landscape Consulting

Southwest. “Give citrus trees their final application of fertilizer for the calendar year,” advises Arizona horticulturalist Noelle Johnson. “Citrus need to be fertilized three times each year: in late winter, early summer and late summer.”

Get her Southwest September checklist

Jocelyn H. Chilvers

Rocky Mountains. “Broadleaf evergreens should be a priority for your fall planting program,” writes Colorado landscape designer Jocelyn Chilvers. “These plants attract much-needed colour and texture to the winter landscape but can suffer from our region’s low humidity, intense sunlight and drying winds.”

Get her Rocky Mountains September checklist

J. Peterson Garden Design

Texas. “Start a wildflower garden. You’ll need until Thanksgiving to plant seeds, but the first part of September until early October is the ideal time,” writes landscape designer Jenny Peterson.

“Wildflowers like bluebonnets (Lupinus texensis), Indian paintbrush (Castilleja), Indian costume (Gaillardia pulchella) and purple poppy mallow (Callirhoe involucrata) require full sun and well-drained dirt to flower best. You are able to buy seed mixes from your local nursery or botanical center, or call your county extension service when you have difficulty locating seeds or want more specific advice.”

Get her Texas September checklist

Benjamin Vogt / Monarch Gardens

Central Plains. “Plants such as bee balm (Monarda spp) are inclined to look scraggly by late night, and deadheading doesn’t necessarily bring back new blooms,” writes Nebraska garden consultant Benjamin Vogt. “Consider leaving the unique seed heads that will be finely manicured by summer, making the garden a lot more pleasing to the coldest days.”

Get his Central Plains September checklist

Barbara Pintozzi

Great Lakes. “September is the perfect time to plant perennials and woody plants,” writes Illinois garden coach Barbara Pintozzi. “It used to be that spring has been the ideal time to plant in Great Lakes gardens, but gardeners are discovering that with unreliable moisture and often excruciating summer heat, fresh plants fared better under the less-harsh states of fall. By planting in September, the gardener is guaranteed that the plants will have sufficient time to become established before winter.”

Get her Great Lakes September checklist

Paintbox Garden

Northeast. “About this time of year that I detect an increase in bird activity to my combined boundary, in which viburnum and redtwig dogwood offer a privacy screen from the street,” writes Vermont landscape consultant Charlotte Albers.

Viburnum ‘Mohican’ is especially showy, with fruits moving from red to black and black leaves which turn red with the shortening days,” she notes.

Get her Northeast September checklist

Amy Renea

Mid-Atlantic. “Succulents additionally require a close eye this time of year. Some can overwinter outdoors, but tropical succulents will need to come indoors at the first hint of frost,” says garden writer Amy Renea. “These plants can endure a very light frost, but chilly temperatures can kill off the top growth. A wilted aloe vera is not a wonderful sight, so make them indoors if temperatures fall.”

Ger her Mid-Atlantic September checklist

Gardening with ConfidenceĀ®

Southeast. “Hummingbird feeders aren’t necessary if you have enough plants to feed these visitors, but they’re a fantastic way to ensure you get a consistent food source for those hummers,” says North Carolina garden writer Helen Yoest. “You can place the feeder at a location which is easy to see out of your favourite seat, indoors or out.”

Get her Southeast September checklist

More: Watch more regional gardening guides

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Herb Garden Essentials: Grow Your Culinary Sage

There are dozens and dozens of sages out there that can add colour and punch to your landscape. Some are strictly ornamental; others are also used for everything from scenting soaps and perfumes to repelling moths and removing cooking scents.

For the herb gardener and cook, common sage (Salvia officinalis) is probably the best alternative. Luckily, this easy-to-grow plant is currently available in a number of varieties.

Pineapple sage (S. rutilans, S. elegans) along with fruit-scented sage (S. dorisiana) are colorful and edible choices for quite warm-weather climates. Be careful not to confuse pineapple sage, with its bright red flowers, with the easily accessible scarlet sage (S. splendens).

Caution: Not many sages are edible, and some can cause nasty side effects, so check the species until you consume any.

Jocelyn H. Chilvers

Light requirement: Full sunlight; semi shade in hot climates
Water requirement: Little once recognized
Prime growing season: Spring through fall
When to plant: Spring; can plant in fall in warm-winter climates
Favorites: Aurea, Berggarten (Mountain Garden), common, Icterina, Italian Aromatic, Purpurea, Tricolor

Aloe Designs

Planting and maintenance: Pick a sunny site with good air circulation and excellent drainage; amend the soil as needed to provide this. You can start from seed, but seedlings and nursery plants are typically more trustworthy. Set them 3 feet apart with the crown just above the ground.

Le jardinet

If you’re growing sage in a container, select a pot that is at least 12 inches wide and 8 inches deep. Water frequently until established, then water as needed. A deep watering once a month could be. Apply a complete fertilizer every spring. In cold-winter climates, bring plants indoors to overwinter. Sage is susceptible to fungal diseases like mildew and can develop root rot in wet soil.

Like many other herbs, sage can get rangy. To keep it in check, return to just over the new increase in the spring. You may need to replace the plants every couple of years.

Harvest: Pick off leaves and flowers as needed. Harvest softly the first year to encourage growth. Do not do a large harvest fewer than two months before the first anticipated frost date in fall, to stop damaging new growth. Dry the leaves for storage. Drying also intensifies the taste.

More: See how to grow more culinary customs

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