The following is based on the book (cited above) by Douglas W. Tallamy, professor of entomology and wildlife ecology at the University of Delaware. It gives us something to consider in selecting garden plants.
Spring is behind us and summer blooms are starting. Crepe myrtles especially are beginning to flower and will for the next couple of months. The first to bloom is the large white Natchez. Their bright white flowers are spectacular. Natchez is one of a few crepe myrtles that have a fragrance. It is not to late to add Natchez to your garden, but give it room to grow. It can reach heights of 25 feet or more. Several examples are growing along S. Alamo St. near Beauregard.
Gardens are on-going projects. The cottage gardens at 815 and 825 E. Guenther are good examples. Walk by and see new additions and get ideas for your own garden.
- Each time you cut the lawn, change directions from the previous mowing to help grass blades grow upright.
- Two ounces of orange oil and one gallon of 9% vinegar will kill weeds. The vinegar can be purchased at the grocery and orange oil at your favorite nursery. One tablespoon of orange oil in a gallon of water can be poured on a fire ant mound to kill the ants.
- A few drops of dish soap in water sprayed on plants will get rid of mites and aphids. An empty household cleaner spray bottle makes a good applicator. Wash it thoroughly before use.
- Beer will help rid flowerbeds of pill bugs. No joke! Just sink a shallow dish in the ground until the top edge is even with the soil. Add the beer and see the results.
- Do not bag lawn grass when it is cut. Leaving the clippings on the ground adds needed nitrogen back to the soil.
Garden Note: Where flowers bloom, so does hope.