- Watering: Water is needed throughout the spring, summer & fall. Usually, 1" of water per week is enough to maintain the plant. However, during the hot summer months more may be needed. It is important that your evergreens get plenty of moisture in the Fall. This helps prevent winter-burn. Always be sure to water first thing in the morning. If you water your plants at night there is a chance they will stay damp throughout the night and it increases the chance of fungal and bacterial diseases.
- Fertilizing: In spring and fall apply a slow release fertilizer. If the evergreen begins to turn brown it may be helpful to apply a soil acidifier. This helps reduce alkalinity in soils. Be sure to follow directions on the label to ensure correct application and timing.
- Pruning: Remove any dead or diseased parts of the plant as needed. If there is a large area that is dead or diseased it is best to remove it in the winter when the sap is no longer running. In early spring (May or June), the new growth that emerges every year is called the "candle". After this growth begins about half of the "candle" can be pruned off or pinched back. This helps reduce the height and also creates a fuller shrub. Timing is everything. Almost all evergreens need to be pruned when they are actively growing.
Deciduous Trees & Shrubs
- Watering: Water as needed through spring and fall. 1" of water per week is usually enough to maintain the plant. More may be needed in hot, dry periods. Always be sure to water first thing in the morning. If you water your plants at night there is a chance they will stay damp throughout the night and it can increase the chance of fungal and bacterial diseases.
- Fertilizing: Apply a slow release fertilizer in the spring and fall. To give the plants an extra boost apply a water soluble fertilizer, such as Fertilome (20-20-20) Soluble Plant Food once a month.
- Pruning: Prune out any dead or diseased parts of the plant as needed.
- Spring Blooming Plants: Rhododendron, Lilac, Azalea, etc. - Heavy pruning for size and shape should be done AFTER they bloom in the spring. If you prune in mid-summer to early spring, you will remove the flower buds and the plant will not bloom.
- summer and Late Blooming Plants: Pruning for size and shape should be done in late Fall or early Spring when the plants are dormant. LIGHT pruning can be done throughout the summer if needed.
- Watering: Water as needed from spring to fall. Always be sure to water first thing in the morning. If you water your plants at night there is a chance they will stay damp throughout the night and it can increase the chance of fungal and bacterial diseases.
- Fertilizing: Apply a slow release fertilizer in the spring. Also, to give the plants an extra boost, apply a water soluble fertilizer once or twice a month when they are actively growing and flowering. When perennials start to bloom it is also beneficial to apply a fertilizer that is high in phosphorus. This encourages more blooms over a longer period.
- Pruning & Maintenance:
- Fall: Cut back and clean up any dead leaves or flowers. Some plants, such as grasses, provide winter interest. Therefore, you may or may not want to cut these back. Any diseased material should be removed and disposed of to prevent re-infection in the spring.
- Spring: Remove any dead material that was left for winter interest (grasses)
- Summer: Deadhead as much as possible to encourage longer flowering periods and more blooms. If foliage begins to look bad, cut it off so new healthy foliage can grow in its place. Most plants recover pretty quickly after being cut back.
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