Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Lower South

November, 2011
Regional Report

Favorite or New Plant

Fall Aster
Fall aster (Symphyotrichum oblongifolium) forms a green subshrub that is covered with a blanket of 1-inch, purple-violet blooms in the fall to early winter season. It is very hardy and drought tolerant. Shear plants back in June to encourage branching and a bushier habit. Cut back to near the ground line in winter. Fall aster is hardy to zone 7 and is not susceptible to any pest or disease problems.

Clever Gardening Technique

Keep Holiday Cactus Happy
Holiday cactuses are popular fall to winter indoor decorative plants. They are induced to bloom by the longer nights of fall but also need bright daytime sun and cool night temperatures, around 65 degrees F, if possible. Temperatures above 70 degrees F and dry growing media can cause the buds to drop. To keep plant happy and in peak bloom, place them in a very bright outdoor shady spot with a little morning sun and leave them outside when temperatures are not going to fall below 50 degrees F. Bring them in for decorating the home for a gathering of friends and family.


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