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.
by Melinda Myers,posted Sep 27 2013 10:16AM
Looking to expand your peony collection, share a division with a friend or move an ill-placed plant? Fall is the best time to transplant peonies.
Wait for the leaves to yellow or be killed by frost before digging in. Use a shovel or spading fork to carefully dig up the root system. You can divide the clump into smaller pieces with at least three to five eyes per section.
Prepare the planting site by adding several inches of organic matter such as compost to the top 12 inches of soil. Dig a hole large enough to accommodate the roots. Place the rhizome, that’s the swollen underground stem, so it is no more than 1 to 2 inches below the soil surface.
Water the soil thoroughly to remove air pockets and ensure good root-to-soil contact.
Don't be alarmed if your peony fails to bloom the following spring. It will bloom the next year as long as it was properly planted.
A bit more information: Peonies often fail to bloom the spring after transplanting. If the problem continues evaluate the growing conditions and your maintenance program. Rhizomes planted too deep, over fertilized, or placed in an area with heavy shade may fail to bloom. Correct the problem to ensure future flowering.
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:)