Home > Great Big Greenhouse Blog > February 2017 > IN THE GARDEN with DOUG - SPRING LAWN CARE

IN THE GARDEN with DOUG - SPRING LAWN CARE

Mother Nature has delivered us a mild winter .  With a mild winter comes advancement of early plant growth.  Have you noticed some dandelions blooming already?  Also, it seems that everyone is dealing with having Bittercress growing and blooming right now.  Bittercress is an annual weed.  It grows in a rounded clump and has small leaves with white flowers right now.  It usually sprouts in bare, moist areas in the lawn and garden.  Unfortunately, the flowers are now dropping seed for next generation of growth.  The best remedy is to spend some time out in the garden and pull up this weed – especially before it flowers.
                The first order of business will be to rake the lawn.  Raking removes all the twigs, branches, and acorns from the lawn but there are other benefits.  Raking will fluff up the matted blades of grass.  This allows air to dry the old blades of grass, which lessen the chances of a fungal disease taking hold.  A raked lawn will also warm up quicker and get the grass growing sooner.
                Some of our customers are reporting having forsythia in bloom.  We use the forsythia to alert us to the proper time to apply the crabgrass pre-emergent.  Have you considered going organic with your weed prevention?  If so, then we highly recommend the ESPOMA CORN GLUTEN product.  Corn gluten is a weed preventer.  It prevents the roots of seedling weeds from developing.  Without root formation, the weed dies from a lack of water since roots deliver water to the rest of the weed.  Now is a good application time.  Seeds are germinating early this year since we have had such a mild winter.  Please realize that corn gluten will NOT kill weeds that are already growing (such as the bittercress).
REMEMBER, PREVENT CRABGRASS NOW BUT, WAIT TO WAGE WAR ON THE WEEDS
                Crabgrass, unlike most lawn weeds, grows from seed that the mother plant produced the previous summer.  The mother plant dies completely over the winter never to be seen again.  In late winter / early spring (starting about now) the seed germinate and start to grow.  Crabgrass preventer is an agent that dissolves and forms a coating on the surface of the soil.  ANY seeds that try to sprout and push a root through that barrier are killed. 
                Now, weed killers, such as Pennington’s Weed and Feed, are best applied a little later in the spring thaN crabgrass preventer.  The reason for this is that weed killer is absorbed through the leaves of the plants and not at all through the roots.  The fact that weed killer only enters the plant through the leaves makes it very important that the product be applied with actively growing weeds.  DO NOT MOW THE LAWN JUST PRIOR TO A WEED AND FEED APPLICATION.  MOWING REMOVES THE LEAVES OF THE WEEDS THAT ABSORB THE WEED KILLER.
                                                HAPPY GARDENING  -  REMEMBER ONLY 28 DAYS TO SPRING!!!!!
Posted: 2/20/2017 by Doug Hensel | with 0 comment(s)
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