Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Coastal and Tropical South

September, 2006
Regional Report

Make Raised Beds

Whether you need to overcome heavy soils or add a retaining wall to the site, raised beds make sense. Take time to plan and build now, then plant at your leisure as temperatures moderate. Amend native soils or bring in a nursery's planting mix, add manure, and let it mellow.

Storing Tender Bulbs

Gather mesh onion bags or old pantyhose and a big bag of cedar shavings like those used for animal bedding. Dig caladiums and dahlias, shake the soil off, and loosely pack with enough shavings to keep them separated. Dust each bulb with sulfur to prevent rot while in storage.

Plant Yaupon Holly

A great native plant, overused and underappreciated, yaupon holly (Ilex vomitoria() can be an excellent wildlife plant. Put one where it can take on its natural form. Both yaupon's species and many of the selections cultivated from it have brilliant red fruit called drupes.

Spread Lime in Fall

The timing for applying lime to lawns depends on soil type and grass performance. If a lawn other than centipede never quite greens up properly, test the soil with a home test kit or get a kit from your county Extension agent. Use pelletized dolomite limestone for consistent, almost-dust-free spread.

Multiplying Onions

Visit a garden center to buy bunches of multiplying onions. These delicious treats are most often locally grown and harvested for fall planting. Choose a sunny site in well drained soil and space onions 3 inches apart. Plant deeply enough to cover the white part of the stem.


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