Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Middle South

April, 2003
Regional Report

Plant Tomatoes

Set out vigorous young tomato seedlings in sunny beds and containers. Plant them deeply, so that only the topmost leaves are showing above the soil. Protect tender plants from strong wind by wrapping the base of cages with clear plastic.

Pick Peppers

Sweet bell peppers are great, but I use my garden space to grow peppers I can't buy. Choose interesting varieties! Like tomatoes, peppers benefit from being planted deeply, so their roots are insulated from hot, dry conditions close to the soil's surface.

Sow Sunflowers

Every garden needs a backdrop, and sunflowers are ideally suited for the job in sunny sites. Sow seeds where you want the plants to grow, and then thin them to at least 15 inches apart. Big sunflower leaves usually shade out weeds, making this a very low-maintenance crop.

Plant Summer Bulbs

Many of summer's most elegant flowers grow from corms and tubers. Plant dahlias and gladiolus in sun, or garlic chives in shade. To add an elegant touch to your porch or patio, fill containers with beautiful tuberous begonias.

Add Annual Herbs

Perennial herbs are ready for the company of annual species, including dill, basil, cilantro, and marjoram. Grow these and other herbs in a raised bed where drainage is excellent. Or fill a large container with your favorite culinary herbs. Keep it close to your kitchen door for convenient picking.


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