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Archives for March 2, 2017

Pick up gardening tips at local Extension workshops | Local News …





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Agromin gardening tips: With spring upon us, time to make garden, landscaping plans

Spring officially begins March 20 but there is no need to wait to start planning and planting your spring garden and landscape projects, says Agromin, an Oxnard-based manufacturer of earth-friendly compost products made from organic material collected from more than 50 California cities.

Residents can obtain Agromin soil products in bulk or in bags at Rainbow Environmental Services (gate seven) in Huntington Beach and in bulk at South Coast Supply in Huntington Beach and Los Alamitos.

Evaluate Your Soil: With the heavy rains over the past few months, important nutrients from the soil may have leached out. Add soil amendments with the proper pH balance to encourage strong plant growth. Cultivate the soil down one foot. Add appropriate organic soil amendments before any new planting.

Start Your Spring Garden: Plenty of vegetables and herbs can be planted in the ground in March. Vegetables include beets, carrots, cucumber, eggplant, endive, lettuce, onions, peas, peppers, radishes, strawberries, squash and tomatoes. Herbs to plant now are basil, chives, cilantro, dill and parsley. These vegetables and herbs can be planted from seed or as seedlings.

Plant Blooming Flowers: For an instant spring flower garden, plant blooming flowers such as azaleas, petunias, marigolds, bearded iris and geraniums. These and more are available at nurseries this month.

Add Fragrant Shrubs: A garden should smell nice as well as look nice. Add star jasmine, lilac or gardenia to your garden. Their scent will enhance the beauty of your landscape. Don’t forget sweet smelling herbs too such as sage and thyme.

Plant Avocado Trees: Now is the time to plant avocado trees. Patience is key, as the trees may not produce fruit for three to four years (longer if planted from seed). New trees need deep watering (especially during summer). Trees need full sun and plenty of room to grow (they can grow as high as 35 feet). Avocado trees are also available in dwarf size.

Practice Weed Control: If you haven’t kept up on weed control, by now, weeds could easily account for much of the greenery in your garden. Spend an afternoon or two weeding your yard and then add a layer of mulch. Mulch not only invigorates plants, but also suppresses weeds before they start. Add at least a two to three inch layer around trees, shrubs, flowers and plants.

Fertilize citrus trees: Add a well-balanced citrus fertilizer early in March. Nitrogen is the primary nutrient that needs to be replaced (once in spring and again in fall). If leaves are yellow, the tree may be experiencing an iron deficiency. Follow the directions on the fertilizer package to determine quantity. Don’t apply the fertilizer directly to the base of the tree. Instead, place at the drip line.

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This article was released by Agromin.

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Pick up gardening tips at local Extension workshops





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Colorize your garden with these March Planting Tips from Quality …


March 15 is traditionally the last day of frost. If the native velvet mesquite trees are leafing out that, too, is a good sign that we will now be frost free until fall.

• Last sowing of carrots, beets, and heat tolerant leaf lettuce.

• Set out transplants of tomatoes and peppers.

• Plant basil, squash, sweet corn, Lima beans, snap beans, cantaloupes and watermelon.

• After danger of frost you can plant Lima beans, black-eyed peas, cane sorghum, chilies, chiltepines, cotton, gourds, indigo, panic grass, teosinte, tobacco, and tomatillos.

• Mulch trees, shrubs, and vegetables (will retain moisture and lessen stress on plants as temperatures warm up.

• Plant such annuals as marigolds to add color and deter pests from garden.

• You may want to sow tall plants such as sunflowers and amaranth on the west side of your plot to screen other plants from the hot afternoon sun.

• If planting corn consider the traditional “three sisters” arrangement of corn, beans, and squash or melons together. The corn creates a trellis and shade. The beans fix nitrogen in the soil and grow up the corn. The squash or melons take advantage of the shade and nitrogen while creating a living-mulch over the ground to protect the soil.

• Instant color Bougainville is an easy to grow vine or bush. Rather than worrying about it freezing consider it an annual. Get nine months of beauty!

• Garden Color: For sunny areas select from petunias, pansies geraniums, gerbera daisies, marigolds, alyssum, lobelia, snapdragons, verbena, stock, nasturtium, dianthus, scabiosa, salvia (many varieties), gazania, ageratum, and hollyhocks. Begonias, dahlias, and caladium are nice alternatives for shady areas.

• Vegetables: Plant tomato, pepper, and eggplant starts. Plant seeds of squash, melons, cucumbers, and watermelon.

• Herbs: Plant cilantro and parsley for early harvest, before the summer heat arrives. Basil, chive, oregano, sage, and thyme may be planted this month.

• Citrus: Keep in mind that there is still a possibility of frost during the first half of the month, so be prepared to cover in the event that temperatures dip into the 30’s.

• Irrigation: Closely monitor irrigation of established trees and shrubs. Be prepared to increase frequency of irrigation as temperatures warm up. Continue to water slowly and deeply.

• Pruning: Evergreen trees and shrubs be sure to remove all clippings, and water deeply after pruning. Do not prune frost damage from frost tender plants until new growth appears.

• Weed Control: Apply a pre-emergent if you did not do so last month. This will help prevent weeds from popping up. As weeds do emerge re-spray.

• Roses: Feed established roses with Flower and Vegetable Food or Magnum Rose Food (for potted roses). Add Epsom salts (Magnesium Sulfate). Spray young buds with a systemic insecticide to prevent thrips and aphids. Also, deep water three times a week.



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