Alabama Gazette - The people's voice of reason

Potpourri for June

 

With school out, and Memorial Day behind us, summer has begun for those in our region. Suddenly the big box stores such as Lowe's and Home Depot are swamped with customers searching for something to plant. I can see in their shopping carts 2 of this plant, 2 of another and so forth. I talked to one lady about her selection, thinking they were being planted in a group in a pot, but no, she told me she was planting them about 4 feet apart because they would spread. Obviously she had not thought out her plan and had not spent anytime reading the information on the tab which would have told her to plant these flowers about 4-6 inches apart. So be mindful when buying to look to the proper sun exposure, water requirement, and the height of the full grown plant. Bloom time is also important.

One gardening topic that is in the news is several lawsuits against Round-Up with the potential harm it can cause. I would suggest that anytime you use the product in your own garden, read the instructions for use, wear rubber gloves. long sleeve shirt and pants, plus glasses. I try not to use this product if it is windy, and wear glasses so not to get it in my eyes. In other words, keep it off your skin, which can absorb the chemical. I also make it a habit to wash my hands when I am finished.

I was reading some gardening materials and something caught my eye that I will share with you about making changes in your garden scheme. You may be tired of planting the same flowers, with the same color combination year after year. Your flower beds are screaming for change. But before you jump in to tackle the boring scheme, pause for a minute and analyze this object of your displeasure. 1. Take note of what you have today and if you have any pictures of this flower bed, look at this record. 2. Decide what you like about the present garden plan and things you do not like. 3. Ask why there should be a change...is it the color scheme? is it because the plants look overgrown? is the area too small? is there something missing? 4. Now get out some books or magazines with flower beds you think are spectacular, and try identify plants, features, color combinations that you could utilize. Sometimes just the addition of a large urn well placed can give a focal point that had been missing. 5. Just don't think about, do it.

PLANT OF THE MONTH--DAYLILIES

Daylilies (Hemerocallidaceae Lilliaceae) are one of the most popular perennials used today, which have their origins in ancient times. 2,500 years ago, the Chinese used them for food, for medicinal purposes, and for ornaments. Their roots and leaves were utilized as pain killers, with the flowers, flower buds, and young leaf shoots used as food. After moving into Europe by way of Venice, Italy, the Arabs introduced them into Lisbon through the Portuguese merchants. Both the lemon daylily and the tawny daylily arrived about the same time. They were later hybridized by the 19th century and exported to the United States. This is a plant born to naturalize, and spread and naturalize it did. We call the ones we see along roadways and highways, escaped or ditch lilies. They migrated from the large plantation houses where the owners could afford the imports, to cemeteries, and everywhere in between. Some refer to them as "outhouse lilies" because they were planted around the foundations of out houses. The old fashioned lemon colored and the brownish tawny ones are some of the tallest. They have been hybridized to incorporate all color and texture combinations. These are easy to grow, need full sun to partial shade, and bloom spring and summer. The variety named Stella doro bloom for most of the summer. To have a wonderful sequence of bloom, mix several varieties in the bed so that when early spring bloomers fade, the next group carries on. If the different varieties are not separated, they may cross pollinate which means that the next years plants may not be true to form, For those who do not want to be helicopter moms to their plants, Daylilies should be perfect for you.

GOOD GARDENING.

 

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