Make plans now to join Melinda on her famous Garden Walks at Boerner Botanical Gardens in 2014!
Nationally renowned garden expert Melinda Myers helps everyday gardeners find success and ease in the garden through her Melinda’s Garden Moments radio segments. Melinda shares “must have” tips that hold the key to gardening success, learned through her more than 30 years of horticulture experience. Listeners from across the country find her gardener friendly, practical approach to gardening both refreshing and informative! On this page, Melinda shares some more extensive garden tips, which expand on the information provided in her one-minute radio segments.
New tips are added throughout each month, providing timely step-by-step tips on what you need to do next in your garden! Visit Melinda’s website www.melindamyers.com for more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and answers to your questions.
Plant a Few Minor Bulbs
by Melinda Myers,posted Sep 23 2013 9:10AM
Do something different this fall. Add a few of the smaller often underutilized bulbs, known as minor bulbs to your landscape.
Consider expanding the spring bulb season with early bloomers like snowdrops and winter aconites.
You can double your enjoyment by mixing minor bulbs with larger bulbs like tulips, daffodils and hyacinths. Or, plant two different types that bloom at the same time to double your bloom or combine two different bulbs with different bloom periods to extend your spring garden season.
Make sure the bulbs are suited to your climate and growing conditions.
Expand your selection by growing outside your zone. Northern gardeners can winter tender bulbs, like rain lilies, indoors for winter and plant outdoors in spring. Warm region gardeners can purchase pre-cooled bulbs or store those that need a chill in the fridge for at least 15 weeks.
A bit more information: Try using minor bulbs like crocus, squills and grape hyacinths in the lawn. Create a sea of color with crocus or faux rivers and pools of blue with squills and the grape hyacinths. Just make sure you want this for years to come; as anything that kills the bulbs will also kill your lawn.
Eco-friendly Control of Thrips
Poorly developed flowers, stunted plants and silvery streaks on leaves are indications thrips may be feeding on your plants.
These tiny insects have file-like mouthparts they use to puncture the outer surface of leaves, stems and flowers and suck out plant sap. They are very small and difficult to detect. Hold a white piece of paper under the plant and shake. Or remove the petals of damaged flowers, place in a sealed jar with 70% alcohol and shake the jar to dislodge and detect the pests.
Control is difficult and often not needed as the damage is discovered after the thrips have finished feeding.
Provide the proper growing conditions and care for your plants. Avoid excess nitrogen that promotes lush succulent growth these pests prefer. And remove spent flowers that tend to harbor the insects. Manage weeds in the garden and keep thrip-susceptible plants away from weedy areas where the pest populations tend to be high.
A bit more information: Beneficial insects like predatory thrips, green lacewings, minute pirate bugs and some parasitic wasps feed upon plant damaging thrips. Invite these good bugs into the garden by planting a diversity of plants and avoiding persistent pesticides. Visit the University of California IPM online for more details on this pest.
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
If you ever get a chance to see Milwaukee from the water...do it! I don't know what it is about the water but everything looks beautiful when you're on the water. I took these over the weekend and just looking at them calms me. We have a beautiful city enjoy it and enjoy what's left of summer:)