Monday, August 10, 2015

Time to Get Ready For Fall

Last week, I was trying not to cry about the 3 hours I had spent in the yard spraying weeds. I was thinking I could have done a lot of custom programs from soil test in those 3 hours. When I was finishing up spraying, a major rainstorm hit the area that I live. Thank you Possum’s Spreader Sticker! Even weeds that I sprayed while I was empting my sprayer as the rain was coming down died! All the hours spent formulating Possum’s Spreader Sticker with a scientist (I speak a little of his language and I think he speaks a little of mine) paid off right in my own yard. I had developed with the help of a scientist a spreader sticker that would get a control product in a plant quickly. And it worked awesome! A lot of times I hear of or see (everyone has a camera) great results with our products. When a product saves me 3 hours of hot, mixing and spraying time in my own yard, I’m in love!  

Treat for mosquitoes in your yard! Scout around your yard for potential breeding sights. It is amazing how many places that collect water and a mosquito can lay an egg. Old tarps, tarps on boats, saucers under flower pots, a dent in a trash can lid, old fountain, bird bath, tires, refrigerators, old cars, and even half - filled rain gauges all provide enough water to help mosquitoes breed. If you do not have time to do scout your yard, hire a professional, and they will help make your yard safe.

Eco Via is a new broad spectrum, NOP (National Organics Program) compliant product that will control mosquitoes. Mosquito Repelling Granular has a good residual and is organic. Cyonara is broad spectrum and is very effective.    

Large Patch fungus has raised its ugly head again in the Lowcountry.  The decrease in daylight hours and rain have been great for Large Patch disease to kick in.  Water only as needed and apply Cleary’s 3336 or Disarm. 

If you have any bushes or trees that need to be transplanted, you can begin to root prune them.  Ideally if you transplant a tree you would have a ball that is 12 inches for each inch in diameter of the tree (i.e. 3 inch tree would be 18 inches on either side of the tree).  Take a shovel and dig straight down without prying and just sever the roots of the tree.  Depending on the size of the tree, whether it was planted or a volunteer seedling, how long it has been in the ground, and whether it is in a group of other plants, will dictate how big of a root ball you will be able to dig. Add some SeaHume and other rooting biostimulants to the area to encourage new roots.  Root prune now and for the next few months for transplanting in November-January.

It is getting close to the time to switch over from summer annuals (crops) to winter annuals (crops).  When amending your annual beds or garden this year try Back to Nature’s Flower Bed Conditioner.  It’s balanced blend of cotton burrs and cattle manure along with feather meal, cotton seed meal, alfalfa meal and sulfur will surely make your winter annuals a hit.  The alfalfa contains Triacantanol, a natural root growth enhancer and may aid in the control and suppression of certain fungal diseases.   Unlike wood and wood by-products, composted cotton burr and composted cattle manure do not tie up valuable nutrients in the soil and help neutralize the soils pH.  Cotton seed and feather meal provide added nutrients for the plant. If you are planting bulbs for next spring, consider using Back to Nature’s Flower Bed Amendments as well.

The change in weather will also bring on the winter annual weeds.  Now is the time to put out preemergents in your lawn as well as your beds. If you have had Florida Betony in the past, consider using a preemergent that contains Dimension. Many of our customers have noticed a decrease in Florida Betony in lawns that they have used Dimension in late August and again in October. Over ten years ago, I put out some test plots for Dow AgroSciences, and I saw about an 85% reduction in Florida Betony the first year! Dow AgroSciences did not add Florida Betony to the label because of the costs of dealing with the EPA; however, I say, “try it you‘ll like it!”

Watch out for mole crickets, grubs and sod web worms in your turf.  Mole crickets have just developed their wings and are beginning their fall flights, which means they will be up near the surface tunneling (damaging) your grass. Grubs are near the surface and easy to kill before they become a food source for moles or damage your root system themselves.  Sod web worms can eat a huge amount of grass in a short period of time.  Look for moths as you walk around your lawn in the evening.  These moths will come up from the ground, fly erratically for a few feet, then land, almost like a quail.  Treat with Lebanon Insect Control or Aloft and you will take care of both of these guys as well as fire ants and many other insects.