Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Timely Garden Tips for Winter by Master Gardener Bonnie Olliver

Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/sheeprus/

  • Choose seeds, bulbs and woody plants from catalogues and order early.  Some varieties sell out quickly!
  • Start slow-growing seeds such as parsley, rosemary, begonias and petunias now indoors. Broccoli, cabbage and other cole crops can be started indoors in late February and transplanted outside in early April.
  • Carefully remove heavy snow from evergreens and woody shrubs by tapping upwards from under covered branches to minimize damage.
  • Check trees and shrubs for animal damage.  Pull any mulch away from trunks where bark can be gnawed or stripped off.
  • Water recently-planted trees and shrubs if there is little or no rain or snow and if the ground is not frozen.
  • Prune apple and pear trees in late winter. “Seed” fruit trees such as peach, plum and cherry are pruned in mid-April.
  • Monitor houseplants for spider mites, aphids, white fly, fungus gnats and mealy bugs.
  • Using a purchased, soil-less potting mix, transplant rooted cuttings brought inside last fall. Keep soil evenly moist.
  • Keep poinsettias out of drafts, evenly moist and in bright, indirect light to prolong their beauty.
  • Check stored summer-blooming bulbs for rot or decay and discard those affected. Lightly mist any that are “wrinkled.”
  • Continue adding kitchen scraps to the compost pile.  Use wood ashes sparingly on the garden, lawn and compost pile.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Eight New Trees in the Almshouse Arboretum

© 2013 Gary Dunbar

The Bucks County Master Gardeners planted a total of eight new trees (four species) in the Almshouse Arboretum on Saturday, November 23, 2013, under the direction of Arboretum Committee Chair Gary Dunbar.  We now have Kentucky coffeetree, sugar maple, red maple and hackberry beautifully planted, mulched and about to be labeled.

Thanks to Kathy Leas, Genya Hopf, Andy Chirico, Mike Flagg, Joann Cosgrove, AnnaMarie Chiofolo, Joan Pavlica, Sue Stenken, Roberta Chadwick, Elaine Hagey and Gary Dunbar for their hard work and a job well done!