Dilip's 2006 Garden Journal

Monday, January 30, 2006

Dilip's front yard, January 31, 2006

We had unseasonably warm weather yesterday (Sunday) and today - today I believe it hit the high 60s (°F). I was traveling during the holidays and so late in mulch mounding my roses; yesterday, I removed any remaining leaves on the roses, sprayed them with oil and sulfur, and used up 7½ bags of mini pine bark nuggets mulch Mulched rose bed mounding most of the bushes along the driveway.

Daffodils are emerging, and I even have one open in the left side yard. There are lots of camellia buds, and the big bush (now it must be 7 feet or more tall) in the left front corner of the house has a number of white flowers, while the newer pink flowered one next to it has some flowers, as well.


Camellias close up

Daffodil blooming in Dilip's side yard

Since February 26, 1995, I have been maintaining a private gardening notebook on my computer tailored to the needs of my Durham, NC home. Slow to enter the world of blogging, I realized in late January that in addition to other online resources and teaching I've done on topics such as organic gardening, growing and showing roses, and building raised beds, a gardening blog may benefit me by allowing me to put pictures along with text to describe the happenings in my garden, and may help others in their own gardens. I'm going to try putting this year's garden notes online in this blog and see if both my and others' purposes are served.

My notes are tailored to my home in Durham, NC, USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 7B with an average annual minimum temperature of 5-10°F (-12.3 to -14.9 °C). Below is my summary I've put together to guide my gardening activities.

JAN Rose: dormant spray (lime sulfur)
JAN Potted bulbs: if they have sprouts, put in a sunny window and water
JAN 15-MAR 15 Rose: plant new bareroot roses
FEB (early) Fruit trees: prune in late winter or early spring while
dormant (apples to central leader, peaches/plums to vase)
DEC-FEB: Weeping cherry: if wish to prune, do in dormant season or early Aug
FEB Rose: prune hybrid teas to 24-36" high, leave 5-6 canes, use wood glue
FEB Potted blooming bulbs: move from sun so flowers last longer
FEB Potted bulbs: Bring more out of storage
FEB Bulbs: lightly fertilize (optional)
FEB Evergreens: fertilize
FEB Fragrant Winter Honeysuckle: lightly fertilize
FEB Forsythia and other flowering shrubs: cut branch if want to
force indoors in water - keep in cool room till bloom
FEB 15: Grass: 1st of 3 fertilizations (Val.Day, Labor Day, Thanksg.)
LATE FEB/EARLY MAR: Trim top 1/3 off of lavender bushes
LATE FEB/EARLY MAR Grass: pre-emergence crabgrass herbicide (after
forsythia have bloomed and before dogwoods have bloomed)
LATE FEB/EARLY MAR Peach: dissolve 1T epsom salts in water and apply
FEB (late) Prune overgrown shrubbery - privet, photinia (red tip), holly
FEB (late) Fertilize shrubs and trees
FEB-MAR Fruit trees/berry bushes: dormant oil spray as per specific
plant once temp. remains over 45 degF
MAR-JUL All: unless other instructions, feed monthly once begins
actively growing
MAR (early) Crapemyrtle: prune, if want; remove oldest canes
MAR (early) Lawn: apply organic pre-emergent A-maizing Lawn
MAR (early) Fruit trees: prune in late winter/early spring; remove
half of bushy limb growth from peaches
MAR (early) Evergreens: if want to guard against disease, in late
winter spray with soap+tobacco juice+mouthwash
MAR (early) Azaleas and camellias: fertilize just before they blossom
MAR (early) Fruit trees and weeping cherry: dormant oil spray before
buds swell and open; may also spray berries
MAR (early-mid): Blueberry: remove a few of the older canes
MAR Butterfly Bush: cut back last year's growth within 3-4" of old wood
MAR Fragrant Winter Honeysuckle: prune after flowering for shape/size
MAR (mid) Hollies: fertilize
MAR (mid) Trees: fertilize; for fruit trees, try mulch+manure
MAR (mid-late) Lawn: will be time for first mowing and weekly thereafter
EARLY SPRING Peach: (optional) thin bushy limb grwth by 1/2 (mature tree)
SPRING Jumbo Blackberries: prune some side branches to keep from tangles
SPRING Crepe Myrtle: light fertilization (1 of 2)
MAR Rose: optionally uncover mulch, add 3" cow manure, replace mulch
MAR (late) Lawn: apply organic N-Lite organic fertilizer
MAR (late) Peach: once blossoms open, spray insect.+fungic. ?
MAR (late) Strawberry: 1/3 ounce 3-1-2 fertilizer per plant before blossm
MAR 15-AUG 10 Rose: use balanced fert. monthly - NO FERT AFTER AUG 10
APRIL Bulbs: cut off faded daffodils - deadhead to base; fertilize bulbs
APRIL Flowering Almond: after flowering, prune 1/2-1/3 new growth and fert.
APRIL Holly: while flowering can prune so don't remove all berries
APRIL Rose: 1 cup Sulfate of Potash Magnesia per bush
APRIL Rose: As leaves emerge, treat with fungicide
APRIL (early) Forsythia: fertilize
APRIL (mid) Quince: prune immed after bloom to about 6" from ground
APRIL (mid-late) Forsythia: immed aft.blm prune 1/3 oldest canes to ground
APR 1 - OCT 31 Rose: spray every 10 days
APR Evergreens: fertilize
APR 3rd WEEK Rose: pull mulch below graft after danger of frost
APR (late) Peach: spray insect.+fungic. ? (2nd of 5 March - July)
APR (late) Prune any winter damaged branches of any plants
LATE SPRING Jumbo blackberries: fertilize
MAY Azalea: after blooming remove spent blooms & prune; pinch tips if want
to make bushier (use fingertips); fertilize w/ something like 8-8-12
MAY Burning Bush: if want, can prune; top narrower than base
MAY Camellias: if want, can cut back weak or unwanted branches
MAY (late) Peach: spray insect.+fungic. ? (3rd of 5 March - July)
EARLY SUMMER Jumbo blackberries: fertilize
EARLY SUMMER Hostas: fertilize as foliage plant (maybe 16-8-8)
JUNE (early) Peach: hand pinch or prune 3" off end of each soft leafy shoot
JUN Evergreens: fertilize
JUN Fragrant Winter Honeysuckle: lightly fertilize
JUN Azalea: monthly like 8-8-12 fertization after bloom through early fall
JUN Kerria Japonica: cut back flowered shoots, remove few oldest branches
JUN Fruit trees: remove water sprouts
JUN (late) Peach: spray insect.+fungic. ? (4th of 5 March - July)
SUMMER Jumbo blackberries: when cane done fruiting, prune to ground
SUMMER Crepe Myrtle: light fertilization (2 of 2)
MID-SUMMER Jumbo blackberries: tip to 3-4' to force lateral branching
JUL Azalea: monthly like 8-8-12 fertization after bloom through early fall
JUL 4: No more significant pruning till Christmas except roses (as
necessary), blackberry/raspberry and dogwood if needed
JUL (late) Peach: repeat hand pinching if side shoots grow strongly
JUL (late) Peach: spray insect.+fungic. ? (5th of 5 March - July)
JUL or AUG Dogwood: avoid ever pruning, but if good reason, now is when
AUG (early): Weeping cherry: if wish to prune, do when dormant or early Aug
AUG Evergreens: fertilize
AUG Azalea: monthly like 8-8-12 fertization after bloom through early fall
AUG Plum (and peach?): spray trunks & limbs w/ cholorpyrifos
AUG 10 Rose: no more fertilization till next spring
FALL Jumbo blackberries: after dormant cut lateral branches to 16-18"
SEP Azalea: monthly like 8-8-12 fertization after bloom through early fall
SEP 15: Grass: 2nd of 3 fertilizations (Val.Day, Labor Day, Thanksg.)
SEP (late)/OCT (1st week) Grass: reseed
SEP-OCT Pot spring bulbs to force for indoor show
OCT Weeping Cherry: once all leaves gone, dormant oil spray
OCT Evergreens: fertilize (optional last feeding)
OCT Take annual soil sample for county agricultural analysis
NOV Rose: lime established beds and prepare any new beds
NOV If soil test indicates, good time to apply lime in general
NOV Plant bulbs
NOV 15: Grass: 3rd of 3 fertilizations (Val.Day, Labor Day, Thanksg.)
DEC Rose: cut back to waist high
LATE FALL Fruit trees and weeping cherry: dormant oil spray as soon
as all leaves dropped; may also spray berries
DEC (early-mid) Evergreens: optionally spray with CloudCover
DEC 15-31 Rose: mound mulch 6" over graft
WINTER Holly: lightly prune if wish