October 2016 Newsletter
Fall Lawn Care, Moving Plants Indoors, Leaf Removal – and much more!
Our September email detailed fall lawn seeding, feeding and weed control, but if you missed it, here is a brief update.
LAST CALL FOR FALL LAWN CARE TO-DO LIST
Seeding is winding down until “dormant seeding”. We’ll have more on this in a future email but we suggest you consider sod for this time of year. Please call us for your sod needs and availability.
Fall feeding cool season grass (fescue, bluegrass, ryegrass), plays a critical role preparing your lawn for summer heat stress. We urge you to get the first application down NOW if you haven’t. The “winterizer/dormant feed” is made when the grass is still green but you’re not mowing- sometime between late October to mid- November. Soil Service Garden Center stocks Ferti-lome Lawn Food + Iron and Ferti-lome Winterizer for this application.
October is prime time to control perennial broadleaf weeds; dandelion, plantain, clover, wild violets, creeping Charlie and others with Ferti-lome Weed Free Zone or Ferti-lome Turflon Ester with Spreader-Sticker. Different weeds have different control strategies so feel free to dig up your weeds (include roots) and bring them to the Garden Center. We’re happy to provide ID and best control strategies.
DO NOT LET LIQUID CONTROL PRODUCTS FREEZE
MANY CONTROL PRODUCTS SHOULD NOT FREEZE SO CHECK ANY PRODUCT LABELS AND STORE ACCORDINGLY.
BIG TREES AND TOO MANY LEAVES
BIG TREES and their thick, wet layer of falling leaves smother new or existing grass. We may not think about leaves covering the lawn until spring but all of a sudden they melt away and expose bare soil where grass existed in the fall, leading to a muddy mess. For a few helpful hints on how to manage this problem.
Soil Service Garden Center Offers Leaf Removal/ Bed Renovation
Our Garden Center Landscape Crew offers leaf removal on a first come-first served basis and cost depends on the job. Fall is also the ideal time to “do the digging (known as the hard part)” to renovate your flower and garden beds with soil amendments. We have everything you need to do it yourself or our crew can do it for you.
BRINGING PLANTS INDOORS THIS FALL?
With winter fast approaching, now is the time to bring tropical plants inside. As we prepare for this delicate transition, here are some tips to ensure they stay healthy and happy.
MOVING PLANTS INDOORS FOR THE WINTER
- Bring inside- before temperatures drop below 50 degrees F.
- Treat for insects and disease- Use Bayer 3 in 1 Insect, Disease and Mite Control or Bayer Rose and Insect Control. Treat before moving plants inside. Be sure to also treat the underside of leaves.
- Light- place by bright window or use artificial grow lights. Do not let direct sun hit plants during the day. As the plant acclimates to less light intensity, it is not uncommon for some leaves to turn yellow and drop. This can happen weeks or even months after moving them indoors and a natural response to the plant adjusting to its new environment. Think of your plants as being in a resting stage that don’t need much water or fertilizer.
- Clean-Up- PoKon Leaf Shine will shine your leaves without harming them.
- Fungus gnats- are common and pesky in winter, usually due to overwatering in high organic soils. It doesn’t take them long to establish but a control product like Hi Yield Systemic Granular (imidicloprid) or organic Bacillus thuriengensis (Mosquito Bits) are effective.
- Fertilizing- Our houseplants get very little if any plant food until spring. It is important to let plants rest during the dormant season, allowing them to build up energy for next year’s growth.
- Watering- When watering, make sure the top soil layer is dry (stick your finger an inch or so down to check), then water. Allow excess water to drain completely. Avoid using the “wilt test” as the roots can be damaged after periods of frequent over drying. However….
- Less water is better. Overwatering is a sure way to cause root rot. Watch for yellowing and brown leaf tips which are signs of either too much or too little moisture. It may take time to get used to their new watering schedule but patience and keeping a close eye on them for the first month or so indoors will generally sort things out!
SHOULD CERAMIC POTS BE LEFT OUTSIDE?
The Garden Center loves ceramic pots but is not happy if they crack during our cold winters!
LEAVING CERAMIC POTS OUTDOORS IN KC WINTERS
A leading cause of cracking is ice buildup in the bottom of the pot. This means the drain hole should be open at all times. Ice can also surround the outside of the pot so we suggest a Down Under (think elevated coaster) available at the Garden Center. Also put a 2-3 inch layer of large bark mulch, pottery shards or lava rock in the bottom. Of course we can’t guarantee that these safeguards always work so if in doubt and you have room, store them inside!
MICE DON’T FLY SOUTH FOR THE WINTER-
But they love coming into your warm house! They have an amazing knack for squeezing through small openings so this is a good time to thoroughly inspect the outside of your house and plug even the smallest gaps. One of the most common entry points is between the garage door and wall. This is an excellent area to use any of the following products from the Garden Center:
- Conventional mouse traps
- Glue Boards
- Majik Box- A live trap that mice can’t resist. The mice get in, but they can’t get out!
- Rat-X Organic rat and mouse bait- It’s back on the market and safe to use around pets!
All of us at Soil Service Garden Center appreciate your business!
Come see us and
Let’s Get Growing!