Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Upper South

April, 2001
Regional Report

Evaluate Spring Plants

As trees, shrubs, bulbs, and flowers burst into bloom in rapid succession, visit public gardens, nurseries, and garden centers to get ideas for ways to add even more beauty to your yard. Make note of the plants you like, especially those growing in light and soil conditions similar to those you have.

Prepare Soil

As the weather warms and the soil dries out, work up beds for vegetables and annuals as well as new perennial beds. Hand-dig and remove weeds and grass, then spread a 1- to 2-inch layer of organic matter on the soil and fertilizer and lime as needed. Dig or till deeply into the soil.

Plant Bare-Root Roses

Plant bare-root roses now. Make a cone of soil in the bottom of a large hole. Set each rose on top of a mound and spread the roots out evenly. Set the plant so that the graft union will be an inch below soil level for best winter protection. Fill in around the roots with soil and water well.

Trim Vining Plants

Your lovely ivy or wisteria can cause major destruction if left to grow unimpeded. Prune all wisteria stems that are twined around gutter pipes or pushing under siding. Cut back ivy that's invading siding or covering your air conditioner.

Water Newly Planted Trees

After planting trees and shrubs, make a 2-inch soil dam just outside of the rootball all around the tree. This will direct water to the roots rather than into the loose earth around them. Add mulch to the outside of the dam. Soak the soil thoroughly at least once a week throughout the growing season.


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