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Friday, April 17, 2015
Posted By: Laurelle Olfdord-Down in Gardening

An excellent start to April thus far and as far as therapy’s go…weeding is an excellent calmative therapy after an hour spent with a learning driver, just saying. Timing is the name of the gardening game in Spring. Put things in too early and they might be chilled or washed away in the rain. Start things too late and you might not have the selection or size you are looking for.

Be prepared, spend time in the garden each day, even if it is just a walk through. April is where you really get down to work on the garden planning you began in the winter. Keep an eye on the weather and cover any new or tender plantings if Mother Nature throws us some challenges. Now let’s get cracking on the list!

Lawns

– Mowing…Yay! If it makes you feel better about it, put on the step counter or borrow one and see how many steps you log in one mow. Mid- month is a good time to fertilize if you’d really like to mow more. A good well rounded fertilizer with micronutrients is preferred. If you have a lot of moss in your lawn you can apply moss killer when the temperature is in the optimum range for application for the moss killer you are using which is usually around 10-15 degrees Celcius.

Moss Away Moss Control

If you have weeds that bother you, there are tools, weed torches and sprays you can use selectively on the weeds. Gone are the days when you dump weed n feed over your entire lawn. It is a waste of chemical and money. Selective weeding by hand or spray is better for you, your lawn and better for your wallet. Healthy, vigorous grass can outcompete most weeds. Remember the theme of spring…timing. This is key in lawn care.

Garden Beds

Weeding and fertilizing. Weed first…don’t feed your enemy! Timing is key…don’t weed when your garden is saturated with water, pull weeds out before they go to seed. Now is a great time to plant new shrubs and perennials. Once you’ve weeded, consider mulching to make your work a bit easier. Remember, mulch will draw nitrogen from the soil as it breaks down so adjust with a little extra fertilizer for your plants.

Trees

Now is a great time to plant new trees. Fertilize trees around the drip line and don’t forget to make a tree circle to protect your trees especially in the lawn. A tree circle is a 3 foot buffer circle that is mulched or planted with a living mulch such as Perennial Geranium. It helps to protect your tree from poor mower driving practices by teens trying to make some speedy allowance by rushing the mow job or by overly enthusiastic weed whacking …tree circles save lives…tree lives.

If you haven't checked out the Surrey Tree Voucher program - what are you waiting for? Its a fabulous offer for residents of Surrey!

Hanging Baskets

Planters and Hanging baskets

Plan your pots and select annuals and perennials as needed. Remember if you do plant up the annuals it is a bit cool for them at the beginning of the month and you will have to give them a little bit of shelter and warmth. Don’t be fooled into placing them out too early or you will be buying them twice.

Ponds and Water Plants

Clean up, trim and divide pond plants as needed. You can fertilize them once they start growing with a good slow release pond plant fertilizer. Expect a spring Algae bloom, it will subside once your plants start to actively grow and provide coverage. You can add floaters once it warms up towards the end of the month and into the beginning of May. Our water plants should be arriving later this week!

Veggie Gardens

Veggie Gardens

Some veggies can be planted directly into the ground at this time such as Beets, Carrots and Spinach. Some veggies can also still be started indoors. West Coast Seeds and Rene’s Garden websites are fantastic resources for the gardener. If you still have questions we offer workshops with our own crazy veggie lady Kayla, who is starting our very own Art’s Veggie garden at the back of our greenhouse. Stop by and see how our veggie garden is growing (coming soon!).


Sunday, November 9, 2014
Posted By: Laurelle Olfdord-Down in Gardening

November had blown in with wind, rain, a bit of cold, more rain and uh…rain. Welcome to winter on the West Coast. The bright side? Eggnog latte’s are back that’s what! So I went to our friendly neighbourhood outdoor wear stores and was looking for a rain hat, yeah, I know not fashionable, but one that would help me work in my garden and orchard and walk the dogs.

Hoods are no good…I need to be able to see what I’m doing. You know what I found in all three outdoor stores that I went to? They all sent the hats back to head office to make room for the woolen toques. What the..? What kind of weather do we generally have November through April on the WET Coast?!

Any idea what a soggy woollen toque does to my already frizzy silver (ok multicoloured) hair? Well, aside from smelling like a damp sheep my already ah eclectic look has taken a turn for downright witchy! I have my eye on a nice oiled ‘Man From Snowy River’ type hat and in the meantime my relatives from Newfoundland have UPS’d me a lovely authentic Sou’Wester hat, with earflaps, thanks…thanks a lot. So here’s your list, I also send you frizz free good wishes and for those gentleman growing a stache for MOvember…may the growth be with you.

Lawns

I think, quite possibly, mowing might be done for the season – I am pretty sure of this because I saw hubby doing a happy dance when he put the mower into the shed with little parting kick. He is not a lawn man. There still might be time to lime, aerate and topdress if you can find a dry day. Working on a soggy lawn however will pretty much make your efforts for naught so if we continue with the monsoons you will have to wait until late winter/early spring. What you can do however, is watch for drainage problems. Make a note and then adjust the drainage during dry weather. You can also drain the gas from your mower and even take it in for an overhaul or get the blades sharpened so you can beat the crowd getting it done in the spring.

Bobbex and Plantskydd Deer & Critter Repellants

Garden Beds

Do some minor tidying and dividing or moving of shrubs or perennials if needed. Avoid trampling really soggy soil. This is a good time to add hardy perennials and shrubs. It is also still a great time to plant bulbs! Remember if you have lots and lots of squirrels, you can try soaking the bulbs in Bobbex or Plantskydd or planting each group with a Fritillaria which masks the scent of tasty tulips or crocus, or even putting a bit of chicken wire over the bed. This is also a great time to take stock of your garden design and adjust if more evergreen or structural ‘bones’ are needed.

raking leaves

Trees and Shrubs

Keep raking. It works off the Halloween candy. You can also plant and move trees and shrubs if necessary. Remember to always water in your new plantings even if it’s raining as the watering will get rid of airpockets. For those of you with Palm Trees, do not wrap the crowns with burlap. This collects water and encourages rot. Instead you can wrap the palm tree with old fashioned 7 volt twinkle lights and if we get a cold snap, leave them turned on. They will create enough heat to keep your hardy palm happy and ice free. you can also protect the crowns with a sheet of clear plastic. Just the act of keeping the wind and ice off these evergreens is often enough to get them through the winter.

winter pot accents

Pots and Containers

Time to rip out those last few annuals and spruce up your pots with evergreen colour, twigs and stems and a little bit of sparkle. We’ll have some fun classes coming up for this as well as wreaths, Christmas Fairy Gardens, and all sorts of other good stuff in the workshop section on our website. Gather up your pots and re-work the groupings close to the house. Consider adding some winter interest like Hollies, Birch Trunks or Berries for added effect.

While some are already available, we'll have a full selection of these decorative accents by mid to late November. For the pots that are dedicated to summer and won’t be on show, cluster them together up close to the house and if you have some borderline hardy beauties you can wrap them with some kind of insulation (the pots not the plants), such as carpet underlay, bubble wrap etc.

Fall planting, Spring Blooming Bulbs

Bulbs, Tubers etc

Time to bring your Dahlias, Cannas and other tropical bulbs and tuber in. Make sure you cut off the greens, hose off the soil and allow to dry before putting them away. I like to use a sprinkle of cinnamon and a bit of coconut fibre in a brown paper bag. It's also not too late to plant bulbs. Just plant on a day when the ground is not frozen. There is still a great selection of daffodils, tulips, hyacinths and more available instore and you can now <a href="http://www.artsnursery.com/catalog/spring-flowering-bulbs" target="_blank">shop online</a>

Frozen Water Feature

Ponds & Water Features

Keep skimming out the leaves and removing other dead plant material. If you remove your pumps and hoses then now is a good time to remove them before we get a freeze.

Tools

If you haven’t already done so, take stock, clean shovels and hoes in a sand bucket. Oil handles and do a general taking stock. Might be a good time to write a Christmas-want list. you can even shop online for some of our tools.

That is probably enough for now, Happy November…or at least Happy Eggnog Latte season!


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Art's Nursery is a 10+ acre retail and wholesale garden centre located in Surrey, a suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. We've been in business at this same location since 1973 and we're proud to serve you today!

We carry an incredible selection of plants, shrubs, trees, annuals, perennials, vines, groundcovers, roses and much more. Soils, bulk materials, pottery and a variety of garden accents are also available.

Our plant selection is so large that you can actually drive a golf cart while you shop!

We pride ourselves on providing high quality plant, expert advice and an exceptional gardening experience.

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