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Archives for April 24, 2017

Spring into your garden: Tips for success ::

Here is some advice to help you get your garden growing:

Prepare your yard:

Clear the yard of any debris, downed limbs, etc. Look for areas that may need to be reseeded. When you mow, don’t cut the grass too short the first few times.

Prune trees and shrubs:

Cut dead or diseased branches from trees and shrubs. Trim summer-blooming shrubs such as butterfly bushes, hydrangea, and roses. Prune early blooming shrubs after they bloom. Deadhead spent flowers from bulbs, but leave the rest of the plant.

Test your soil:

You can find a home soil-test kit at most home improvement stores. Follow recommendations according to your results to prep your soil. Adding organic compost can provide nutrients for plants.

Prepare a space:

Clear the area you will be planting of weeds and debris. Cultivate to a depth of 10 to 12 inches. Create a map of your yard and design a layout of flower beds and/or a vegetable garden on paper first. Remember to plan the color combinations and plant heights so they complement each other well.

Start planting:

Plant bare-root trees, shrubs, and perennials by early spring. You can transplant container plants anytime in the season except for the middle of summer. In North Carolina, the last spring frost typically comes in early April, although in higher elevations wait later in the month.


Apply balanced fertilizer according to your soil test results around shrubs and mulch beds when new growth starts to appear. Soil preparation is the most important thing you can do for your new plants.

Don’t forget the water:

New plants need water. Be sure to check the appropriate amount of watering needed for each type of plant. Over watering is worse than under watering as it can cause roots to rot.

Bring on the sun:

Check the instructions for each of your plants to determine their tolerance to sunlight. The location of your plants can be critical to ensure plants thrive.

Annuals Perennials:

Growing annuals is fairly easy. The time to start seeds generally is about six weeks before the last frost. Seed packages will list the number of weeks needed to germinate when starting indoors. Sow seeds following the directions on the packet. Perennials are a great choice for those who don’t have a lot of time to replant every year. With proper care, they will return to your garden year after year. Allow plenty of growing room between plants. Planting large quantities of a few varieties close together creates a full effect. This will also help to reduce maintenance time. When grouping different varieties of plants together, remember to use plants with similar watering and sunlight needs.

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Dunklin County Library offers gardening tips

Jeff Dorris

The Dunklin County Library wants to help you create the perfect garden.

The library offers a collection of books on a variety of gardening projects, ranging from vegetable gardens to houseplants.

Wether its advice on when to plant seeds for your vegetable garden or how to make a rain barrel, the informational specialists at all branches of the Dunklin County Library will locate the appropriate resource.

Growing the perfect red tomato is the goal of many novice gardeners. Before grabbing the spade, William Alexander, shares his journey to providing fresh food for his family in The $64 Tomato.

From his animal encounters to vacations planned around vegetable harvest, the author entertains and teaches about the pleasures of gardening.

300 Step by Step Cooking and Gardening Projects for Kids by Nancy McDougall is a fabulous, practical guide to cooking and gardening for children. It’s packed with a range of fun and tasty recipes and exciting, educational projects inside and out.

It covers all the basics from safety, equipment, essential techniques, and cooking and gardening terms.

Information about installing a pond in your yard, composting, attracting butterflies or hummingbirds, or creating a feng shui patio garden can all be discovered at the Dunklin County Library.

Children love to get their hands dirty and at the March Story Time at the Library, the kids started a celery plant in the manner which continues to grow and can be seen at the Kennett Branch.

Story Time is the last Tuesday of each month at 6:00 p.m.

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