Tom's Monthly Gotta-Do's
Dry spring weather has made it
tough to grow plants in containers. They dry out so quickly. If a plant
dries out too fast, it may be an indication it has too small a pot.
Stepping it up a pot size or two may help with the watering and makes for
better plant growth too.
One way to help with the watering is keep a saucer under the plant at this
time of the year. It holds the extra water that drains through the
containers and keeps it ready for use. This may supply up to a day of
Here are some more tips we use to conserve water at this time of the year.
Catch the water from the air conditioner for watering container plants. We
can capture 4 to 8 gallons of water per day. Also, save the water from
dinner glasses. This too is used for plants indoors and outside too. We
also catch the first cold water before showers. This is used for the
roses. And also donâ€™t forget to put a cistern under the down spouts. When
it does rain here is a reserve for the dry times.
Tomatoes are a major concern for many gardeners. Here are some secrets.
Keep the plants moist but not wet. Use a mulch to stretch the time between
waterings. Trellis the taller plants. Feed the plantings every 3 to 4
weeks. And lastly keep control of aphids and caterpillars. Plenty of
natural controls are available for these pests. One more thing â€“ if you
grow tomatoes in containers, make sure it is a big one. Plants in too
small a pot end up with cultural problems like blossom-end rot.
Now there is a lot to do this month so I have a list of Gotta Doâ€™s.
Flowers: Angelonia, balsam, begonias, black-eyed-Susan, blue daze,
bromeliads, browallia, bush daisy, butterfly weed, cat's whiskers,
celosia, coleus, coreopsis, crossandra, Dahlberg daisy,
gaillardia, gazania, gerbera, goldenrod, gomphrena, impatiens,
liatris, marigolds, melampodium, moon vine, nicotiana,
nierembergia, pentas, periwinkle, Porter weed, portulaca,
purslane, salvia, sunflowers, torenia, verbena and zinnias.
Vegetables: Calabaza, chayote, cherry tomato, collards, dasheen,
lima bean, snap bean, Malabar spinach, malanga, New Zealand
spinach, okra, hot pepper, roselle, Seminole pumpkin, Southern
pea, sweet potato, tamarillo, yam and yard-long bean.
Herbs: Anise, basil, bay laurel, cardamom, chives, coriander,
dill, lemon balm, oregano, rosemary, sage, savory, sweet marjoram,
mint, tarragon and thyme.
Bulbs: Achimenes, agapanthus, blood lilies, bulbine, caladiums,
calla lilies, cannas, crinums, day lilies, eucharis lily,
gladiolus, gloriosa lilies, peacock ginger, society garlic, spider
lilies and rain lilies.