Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Southern California Coastal & Inland Valleys

May, 2001
Regional Report

Harvest Asparagus

If you planted asparagus, artichokes, or rhubarb this past fall, winter or spring, don't harvest this year. Let the plant use all its energy to develop a good root system and strong first shoots, instead of expending its energy having to send up more shoots to replace harvested ones. Next year you can begin harvesting.

Feed Strawberries

Fertilize strawberries with a balanced fertilizer after each fruit-bearing period for continued strong growth and fruit set. I like using a seaweed and fish emulsion solution because it offers many micronutrients. Avoid applying fresh manure, as strawberries are not tolerant of salts, and fresh manure contains a relatively high level.

Use Trellises

Trellises provide support for greater fruit production over longer periods. Erect plants have more leaf area exposed to sunlight, which increases growth and production. They also receive more air circulation, reducing fruit rot and ground-insect attack. Vines spreading on a trellis can provide shade for a porch, patio, or wall. Crops grown on a trellis are easier to pick and less likely to get attacked by snails and slugs.

Paint Tree Trunks

Paint tree trunks with light-colored indoor latex paint to prevent sunburn damage. This is especially important for young trees with tender bark. Use an inexpensive brand, or thin an expensive brand by mixing one-half paint with one-half water. Paint the lower third of the tree, concentrating on the south-facing side.

Prune Flowers

Prune azalea, carnation, chrysanthemum, fuchsia, geranium, impatiens, lavender, marguerite, marigold, petunia, rhododendron, rosemary, sedum, and zinnia, gently shaping the plants to encourage them to send out more side branches. Use the cuttings to root new plants.


Today's site banner is by Paul2032 and is called "Osteospermum"