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We’ve had some lovely days and the plant sales are REALLY tempting. If you’ve gone plant sale shopping recently and now don’t have time to plant, don’t panic. Find a spot in your landscape and plant those perennials still in their pots. Sink them into the ground up to the pot level, keep watered till the ground freezes and mulch.
Then come spring, after you’ve decided where you want to plant them, dig them up carefully and they should be just fine.
Gardeners, especially those newer to the delights of gardening, have been asking about using plastic or landscape fabric as they start new beds. First off, I hate plastic and will not use it. That sounds harsh but plastic just has no place in my garden. (UNLESS you’re making a trail where you don’t plan to plant)
I don’t really care for landscape fabric either as, more often than not, weeds find a way of growing on top off the fabric and quack grass seems to come up right through it. When you try to pull them out you pull the fabric and there’s a whole other issue.
Shredded newspaper or office paper that’s been wet down is okay. It’s cheap, it mats down better than the fabric and breaks down, however, personally, I use natural wood chips only.
As for pruning out diseased branches, disinfect the pruner after each cut. Use Lysol spray or rubbing alcohol. Clorox sells a bleach free disposable wipe that I’ve heard works as well. Remember that your hands will also have the bacteria on them. Wear garden gloves.
One more question that continues to pop up is our watering situation. If you planted trees, shrubs or even perennials in the last 3 years, water them until the ground freezes. With far less rain this year, I’m watering my new trees and shrubs deeply once a week.