(Distributed 09/24/04) Plantings of caladiums are getting past their prime now, and it’s time to decide what you want to do with them.
(Distributed 09/17/04) Some of the most beautiful irises we can grow in our gardens are the hybrids of several species that grow right here in Louisiana.
(Distributed 09/10/04) Landscaping is a great way to give your home a beautiful appearance as well as make outdoor spaces function usefully for the family.
(Distributed 09/03/04) During this transition period, warm-season and cool-season vegetables rub elbows in the garden. The warm-season vegetables, such as snap beans, okra, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers and eggplants, will mostly finish up in November or early December as weather becomes colder. And cool-season vegetables and herbs are planted into the garden starting this month.
(Distributed 10/29/04) October is a transitional month in Louisiana flower gardens. Many warm-season annuals have finished or are finishing, and gardeners’ thoughts begin to turn to cool-season bedding plants for fall, winter and spring color.
(Distributed 10/22/04) Fall is a prime planting season in Louisiana. How well you prepare the soil prior to planting has an enormous effect on the health and growth of your plants.
(Distributed 10/15/04) The chrysanthemum, more than any other flower, seems to represent the fall season in the garden. These plants, which also are commonly called "mums," have been cultivated for centuries and are popular with gardeners around the world.
(Distributed 10/08/04) Cool fall weather makes me hanker for a big mess of greens cooked with smoked meat and a piece of cornbread on the side to sop up the "pot likker." Eating doesn’t get much more Southern than that.
(Distributed on 10/01/04) Some plants seem to save up all summer for the spectacular display of flowers, fruit and foliage showing up in our gardens now through November.
(For Release On Or After 07/23/04) Deadheading – the practice of pruning off old, faded flowers from a plant as it blooms – is an important but often neglected gardening technique.
(For Release On Or After 06/11/04) The extraordinary heat we experience in summer can be put to good use in the vegetable garden. Through solarization – a process of using sunlight and a clear plastic covering to heat soil – summer heat can be used to reduce the harmful effects of pathogenic fungi and nematodes and to kill weed seeds in the soil without the use of toxic chemicals.
(For Release On Or After 05/14/04) One of my favorite poems by Robert Frost is "Nothing Gold Can Stay."Nature's first green is gold,Her hardest hue to hold.Her early leafs a flower;But only so an hour.Then leaf subsides to leaf.So Eden sank to grief,So dawn goes down to day.Nothing gold can stay.
(For Release On Or After 07/02/04) At this intensely hot time of year, I like to remind people how important shade trees are in our landscapes.
(For Release On Or After 02/27/04) Now is an excellent time to evaluate your landscape for pruning that needs to be done, since many plants can be pruned in February.
(For Release On Or After 05/07/04) In May we move from the warm days and cool nights of spring and early summer to the hot days and warm nights that will be with us until September.
(For Release On Or After 04/30/04) In our climate, with an average annual rainfall of around 60 inches, irrigating our gardens generally is an occasional rather than a constant need.
(For Release On Or After 02/20/04) The tall flower spikes of gladiolus add elegance to the flower garden. Derived from species native to South Africa, the modern hybrid gladiolus (Gladiolus x hortulanus) grows from a corm and has been a favorite of Southern gardeners for generations.
(For Release On Or After 03/19/04) The buck moth caterpillar can be found feeding on trees in spring, particularly oaks such as live oak and water oak. Populations vary around the state from year to year, and this is an excellent time to start watching your oak trees for signs of infestation – particularly if you had a problem with these pests last year.
(For Release On Or After 05/28/04) One of my favorite summer vegetables is the yardlong bean.
(For Release On Or After 02/13/04) February is an excellent time to fertilize trees.
(For Release On Or After 06/04/04) Some of the most beautiful flowers of the summer garden are produced by vines. Better yet, since vines climb, the flowers often are produced at eye-level or overhead – allowing us the chance to easily smell the fragrance or closely examine the details of the blooms.
(For Release On Or After 07/16/04) You can invite butterflies into your landscape if you provide the right conditions and the right plants. Go ahead – imagine a garden full of beautiful flowers. Now, add the fluttering movement and brilliant color of butterflies and you have one of nature’s most enchanting combinations.
(For Release On Or After 07/30/04) We are all familiar with low-growing, running grasses like the St. Augustine and centipede used to cover lawn areas, and, in most gardeners’ minds, all other grasses are simply weeds.
(For Release On Or After 04/16/04) Almost every landscape has shady areas, especially when shade trees have grown large.
(For Release On Or After 06/25/04) During the summer, dry conditions and high temperatures may make it necessary to irrigate established trees, shrubs, lawns and flower and vegetable gardens.
(For Release On Or After 03/12/04) Gardening is the most popular hobby or leisure activity in America, but many people still don’t want to spend all their energy on it. For those, there are lots of ways to reduce the time and effort required for landscape maintenance.
(For Release On Or After 03/05/04) Gardeners often gripe about how difficult it is to grow plants in shady areas of their landscapes – although trouble occurs mostly when sun-loving plants are planted in the shade.
(For Release On Or After 03/26/04) Not satisfied with the occasional, chance appearance of butterflies, many gardeners are creating butterfly gardens – with plants specially chosen to invite them into the landscape.
(For Release On Or After 02/06/04) Having shapely rose bushes covered with lots of flowers in April and May starts with pruning done now.
(For Release On Or After 04/23/04) It’s hard to imagine a more delightful perennial than the daylily. Available in an amazing variety of colors, shapes and sizes, there are daylilies to fit virtually every taste and garden situation.
(For Release On Or After 06/18/04) No other summer-flowering shrub surpasses the tropical hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis) for glossy, dark-green foliage and nonstop flowers in shades and blends of pink, yellow, orange, white, lavender or scarlet. And their exceptionally long blooming season runs from late spring through late fall.
(For Release On Or After 04/09/04) As the weather warms up, kids and adults alike begin to spend more time outside.
(For Release On Or After 07/09/04) Wherever you go in America, gardeners will tell you about the terrible pest problems they have to deal with. Still, it seems as though we have more than our share of insects, diseases and weeds in Louisiana.
(For Release On Or After 05/21/04) Perennials are an amazingly diverse group of plants.
(For Release On Or After 04/02/04) In mid-April it’s time to do two things – pay taxes and fertilize your lawn. If you’ve already taken care of the taxes, now you should decide whether or not to fertilize your lawn.