The month of May is upon us and it's time to get that garden into full swing. Gardening is also a great way to take your mind of the troubles and tribulations that might be consuming other parts of your life. So take advantage of the nice spring weather and get out and garden. Here are a few tips on what you can do in the month of May in your garden.
· Full steam ahead for planting! Plant trees, shrubs, vines, ground covers, perennials, and fruit plants of all types.
· Mid to Late May: Plant warm-weather vegetables (e.g., tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash, eggplant, melons, and pumpkins). Seeds such as carrots, lettuce, corn, beans, etc. can be sown this month. Annual flowers, herbs & tender bulbs are ready to be planted now. Paint your world with beautiful flower colors.
· Prune spring-flowering plants and shrubs as they are done flowering. Remove spent blooms or developed seed pods from tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, etc. Please don't remove or tie up the green leaves because they replenish the bulb for next year's blooms.
· Fertilize as needed. Get your soil tested, so you know exactly what amendments you need. The Ohio Cooperative Extension Service will test your soil sample for a fee.
· Continue Fruit Tree, Rose, & Vegetable Spray/Dust Programs if you want insect-free plants. Monitor the vegetable garden for developing insect or disease problems. We have organic solutions to most problems if you prefer.
· Mow grass to a height of 2.5 to 3 inches to maintain good vigor and health. Healthy grass will have fewer weed and insect problems. Apply a "Weed and Feed" fertilizer/herbicide (We recommend Gro Fine Weed & Feed) to eliminate broadleaf weeds such as dandelions if you have not already done so.
· You can start harvesting leaf lettuce, rhubarb, asparagus, and green onions for the early birds planted in previous months. There is nothing like fresh veggies from the garden.
· The generally accepted frost-free date in Central Ohio is May 15. It should be OK to plant tender flowers by this date but keep an eye on the weather forecast. For the more adventuresome gardeners, be sure to cover early planted tender flowers and vegetables. Sheets and frost covers work best; plastic sheets are not so good.
· Side dress perennials with an all-purpose fertilizer such as Master Nursery Bumper Crop Starter Fertilizer.
· Watch for slug damage-control them now before they reproduce. We recommend Garden Safe Slug & Snail Bait (which is safe for pets).