Monday, January 3, 2022

2022 Is Here

Horticulture Hotline 01/03/22

By Bill Lamson-Scribner


Are you ready for the 2022 season in your yard? Plants seem confused and are putting on new growth with cold weather in the forecast. The warm weather has kept large patch and mole crickets very active. Charleston – the hardest place to grow grass…


Here are a few things to do on these nice winter days.


·         Take some soil to Possum’s to get the soil tested – for everyone that has not already.

·         Kill winter weeds now while they are young. It is easier to kill weeds when they are young and actively growing. Once they go into their reproductive mode and start to flower and seed, weeds are much harder to kill. While your grass is dormant is a good time to control weeds too as opposed to the heat of the summer or when the grass is coming out of dormancy in the spring.

·         Take mower in to have serviced to beat the Spring rush. With the new ethanol gas lawn mower engines and other engines have had issues. No one likes their mechanic to tell them, “pick it up in 4 weeks.”

·         Keep leaves off lawn areas. Keeps moisture from being trapped and if you or your lawn service are applying products, you will have a more uniform coverage without the leaves.

·         Move any shrub or tree now before it is too late. Root prune now, move before they start putting on new growth. Try DieHard Transplant to help survival.

·          Spray trees and shrubs with paraffinic oil (ultra-fine, Omni Supreme oil) as opposed to petroleum oils (Volck) to control over-wintering insects. Watch temperatures. If you have ongoing issues with scale, aphids, white flies, or other sucking bugs, try Safari or Dominion for long term control. Neem oil works on diseases as well as insects.

·         Have you tried Lime / Sulfur spray around the ground of deciduous plants that get diseased? Roses, hydrangea and blueberries are good examples of plants that benefit from this sanitation practice.

·         Sharpen pruning tools or purchase new ones.

·         If you haven’t already, get your bulbs in the ground.

·         Apply SeaHume to turf, trees, flowers, and shrubs. Adding organics now will help in the spring. Cotton Burr Compost put out in October is producing great runners still. Love those dark red runners in January!!

·         Re-do bed lines to reflect maturing landscape.

·         Get bird house ready for nesting birds.

·         Have moles, get Mole Patrol or Repellex Mole Repellent – they really work.

·         Have deer, get Deer Stopper – it really works.

·         Check irrigation or get on professional’s list to check. Be sure the heads are pointed the right way. Can you eliminate (turn off) the zone watering the shrubs and trees? Have you tried wetting agents to lower your water bill (we hear between 30 and 60 percent)? Less water equals less disease.

·         Prune Crepe Myrtles – don’t butcher them. Remove crossing (rubbing) limbs, inward growing limbs and diseased limbs to open them up for better light penetration and air movement. Topping or reducing their height is not considered proper pruning.

·         Hold off on pruning plants damaged by the cold – we could still have more freezing temperatures.

·         Test well for salt if you use a well for watering.

·          Get ready to preemerge in February. Kill small seeded summer annual weeds before they take over your landscape.

·         Get out and enjoy our County, State and City parks as well as our local plantations.


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