Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Middle South

November, 2010
Regional Report

Prune Out Non-Variegated Foliage

Occasionally, variegated evergreens will revert to the original, more vigorous, green variety. While cleaning the garden this fall, take a few extra minutes to inspect variegated plants and prune out any branches displaying green foliage. By removing these branches early, you'll be able to maintain the plant's natural form, as well as preserve its interesting foliage.

Walk the Plank

After you've amended and turned the soil of garden beds, take careful steps (pun intended) to keep the bed light and fluffy. No tip-toeing allowed, however. Instead, keep a plank handy to distribute your weight, like a pair of snowshoes would. A two by twelve-inch board, cut to a convenient length, is the perfect size to keep you steady.

Grow Winter Tomatoes

If you're a sucker for home-grown tomatoes, you might try growing pint-sized varieties indoors this winter. Use a twelve-inch or larger pot, filled with a premium potting mix such as Jolly Gardener, to grow 'Pixie,' 'Tiny Tim,' 'Small Fry' or 'Healani.' As plants develop, support them with stakes. If light is low, a fluorescent light fixture placed just above the plants will ensure you get a crop. Rotate the pots from time to time, and once blossoms appear, tap or jiggle the plants to distribute the pollen.

Pick an Ornament With Impact

In the garden, even a small one, bigger is better. In other words, get rid of the forty-nine cute concrete bunnies and pick an ornament with impact. Need ideas? Consider a recirculating fountain to add ambiance and attract birds, a brightly painted bench that complements the garden's color scheme, or a large piece of statuary that reinforces the garden's style, such as a classical urn for a formal landscape or a stone lantern for an Asian-inspired one.

Plant Edible Edging

Think edibles if you're planning to edge your cool-season beds. A row of parsley will mimic a frill of summer liriope, while lettuces that grow into compact heads will resemble a border of tiny boxwood shrubs.


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