Garden Checklist for May 2010
White rain lilies serve as edging in the Welch garden
- Consider white rain lilies (Zephyranthes candida) as a natural border in the flower bed. They are almost indestructible in zone 8 conditions.
- Now is a good time to create summer containers exhibiting succulents such as echeverias, sedums or house leeks (sempervivums). The larger rosettes of the echeverias and sempervivums may be situated in the container with edgings of smaller-leaved sedums.
- Cut off old blossoms on spring flowering annuals, such as pansies, snapdragons, stock and calendulas, to prolong the flowering season.
- Continue to fertilize roses every four to six weeks with small amounts of a balanced fertilizer.
- Allow foliage of spring flowering bulbs to mature and yellow before removing.
- Set out plants of hybrid portulaca (purslane) in sunny areas. Make rooted cuttings of your favorite colors by placing 3 to 4 inch stems in moist, sandy soils.
- It is not too late to sow directly into the soil seeds of sunflower, zinnia, morning glory, portulaca, marigold, cosmos, periwinkles and gourds. Achimenes, cannas, dahlias and other summer flowering bulbs can also be planted in May.
- Pinch back the terminal growth on newly planted annual and perennial plants. This will result in shorter, more compact, better branched plants with more flowers.
- Plant caladium tubers, petunias, impatiens, begonias and torenias in well prepared shady areas.
- Make cuttings of your favorite chrysanthemums and root them in a mixture of sand and peat moss. Cover cutting box with plastic and place in shaded area for 5 to 6 days to prevent wilting.
- Replace or replenish mulch materials in flower beds and shrub borders to conserve moisture and reduce weed growth.
- Remove or cut back frost-damaged crape myrtle and other ornamentals as soon as the extent of the injury can be determined.