Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Middle South

August, 2000
Regional Report

Make More Cukes

Plant a few more cucumbers to go with the salad greens you'll soon be sowing. This is a great time of year to try different hybrids and heirlooms. To help cucumber seedlings from being sucked to death by squash bugs and cucumber beetles, germinate seeds indoors and transplant them into the garden as soon as the first true leaf emerges.

Sow Fall Beans

There\'s just enough time for a quick crop of bush snap beans that will mature in October. Plant them in a block the size of a double bed. Then, if the first frost comes early, you can nurse the plants through it by covering them with an old blanket or plastic tarp.

Plant Some Mums

Potted chrysanthemums are available at every garden center and discount store. Most specimens are rootbound, so repot them into larger, more attractive containers to make them easier to water. Keep them well watered and they'll be blooming when the cool weather comes.

Revive Roses

Hybrid teas and some other roses will make a strong fall comeback if you prune, feed, and water them right about now. Prune back strong canes to healthy outward-facing buds, drench the root zone with a soluble rose fertilizer, and don\'t skimp on water (or mulch) for the next month.

Fertilize Dahlias

As days get shorter, dahlias feel a strong urge to bloom. Help them along by giving them a generous boost of all-purpose fertilizer spread around the drip line of the plants. If needed, provide stakes to keep bud-bearing branches standing tall and the flowers looking at you, not the ground.


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