Bulb Cure

June/july 2012

The Bulb Cure

Leaving the wilting foliage attached to garden grown daffodils is easy if you’re lazy but difficult if you fall into the “Type A” category. When you don’t cut off the strappy leaves it’s called “curing”. It’s a good and helpful habit. It helps next year’s flowers thrive if you ignore the ugly leaves now and let them practically fall off by themselves. If it REALLY bothers you to look at them, bend the leaves double and hide them under perennials just starting to grow. It’s not fun but you’ll reward yourself with bigger, healthier flowers next year. While you’re out there give them some fish fertilizer or 5-10-10 vegetable fertilizer. You’ll hear a collective “ahh”.

Color Cure

Impatiens may be overdone but there IS a reason. They’re a blast of color but most of all they’re EASY!! And contrary to popular opinion they can take sun as long as they have plenty of water to keep their fleshy stems plump. Lakewold Gardens in Lakewood filled their sunny parterres with Super Elfin Impatiiens and they are doing very well, thank you. They are truly low maintenance. Impatiens are one of the few annuals that “self clean”. You don’t have to laboriously dead head their bloomed out flowers. The flowers simply drop off. This is why they’re commonly called “bloomin’ fools”.

Clover Cure

At mid-century, lawn seed mixtures contained both grass and clover …plain old “looking for four leaves” clover. After the 1950’s a majority of lawn seed growers started replacing clover with a mixture of grasses only. The perfect lawn was an obsession. Now, with climate change and water issues a concern, a return to clover mixed lawns makes sense.
Clover creates more nitrogen in the soil, making the lawn greener. It has a sweet smelling white flower that attracts bees. Allergies aside, it’s always good to attract bees for pollination, especially if you have fruit trees. Best of all, clover is SO nitrogen rich, it crowds out weeds. It’s also drought tolerant. It only has one drawback. It should be in low traffic areas…to avoid the bees.

Tidbits

What do you get for your time…

General Gardening—you burn 471 calories per hour (and get a beautiful garden)
Digging-you burn 523 calories per hour (and get a new area to burn another 471 calories)
Walking 2 mph—275 calories per hour (you get the opportunity to buy really expensive walking shoes)

When you absolutely, positively have to spray ornamental or edible plants for bugs and diseases…choose Safer’s 3-in-1 Gardening spray approved for organic gardening. It’s an insecticide, fungicide and miticide. Easy to find…easy to use.

Find out now which food banks will accept your vegetables and fruits in the coming productive month. It’s a win win…