May has started out pretty wet and wild here in Central New York, but things are starting to look brighter every day! This week we thought we would put together quick post on some May gardening “to do’s”. I say quick because I know how busy everyone is in their gardens this time of year. So here goes…
May Garden Tips
- Apply mulch around newly planted trees and shrubs. This practice reduces weeds, controls fluctuations in soil temperature, retains moisture, prevents damage from lawn mowers and looks attractive.
- For maximum landscape interest in a small, vertical space, try annual vines. They can disguise ugly walls and fences. When trellised, they can create shade and privacy while hiding undesirable views. Try morning glory, nasturtium vine and scarlet runner bean.
- To grow annuals in containers on the patio, use a light weight soil mixture. Keep the plants well-watered, because the soil dries out fast. Apply a water soluble fertilizer according to package directions every two weeks.
- Lawns maintained at the correct height are less likely to have disease and weed infestation. Kentucky bluegrass and tall fescue should be mowed at two or three inches in height. Mow frequently, removing no more than one third of the blade at each cutting.
- Grass clippings can be used as a mulch in flower beds and vegetable gardens if allowed to dry well before use. Never use clippings from a lawn that has been treated with a herbicide.
- Newly transplanted vegetable plants should be protected from cutworms with collars. Cut strips of cardboard two inches wide by eight inches long, staple them into circles and place them around the plants. Press the collar about one inch into the soil. These collars will fence out the cutworms and protect the stems of the vegetable plants.
- Plant ground covers under shade trees that do not allow enough sunlight to grow grass. Vinca minor or English ivy are ground cover plants that grow well in shade.
- Plant gladioli bulbs in late May.
Well there you have it. This list has been compiled from many web sites, and there is so much more out there. I implore you to get out there and get started, because the sooner you do the more you’ll be able to enjoy it down the road.
Till next week…
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