Thursday, February 20, 2014

Garden -- The End is Near!

The end of winter.  All that horrible snow and ice is almost gone.
It's almost time to start gardening.  I put things in the ground but if you are going to start plants indoors, it's time for you to get started too.
The forsythia should be blooming in a month, sooner if we get a warm spell.
So the first thing I need at the garden store is a bag of cornmeal gluten for the grass.  It suppresses weed seeds before they germinate and feeds the grass, including giving them nitrogen.
Plus my community has a no chemicals posture.  One of two in Maryland to have such regulations.
Maryland has also passed legislation to reduce the nitrogen flowing into the bay and killing the fauna and flora that support our famous crabs.
I consulted my garden guru, Mike McGrath about the amount of CMG to put down to stay within the law.
I checked the website for the product I use, and as of December 2013 they had not updated their product information to reflect Maryland law.
So you have to ignore the company product information and go by what Mike said in his posting.
Today I'm going to measure my lawn with an old-fashioned Stanley self-retracting tape measure, but I suspect I should put 4 pounds on the front lawn and 6 on the back.  Yeah, it's tiny.
That means that a 25 pound bag will do for both spring and autumn feeding/weeding and leave some over.  I'll let my neighbor use it and see how he likes the results.
He mows too short and gets Japanese beetle grubs but he doesn't know it.  Not a clue as to why the starlings are always out in his lawn in August.
So when you are prepping your lawnmower for the first mow of the spring, set the blade at 3 inches.  Not two, not two and a half, three.  That leaves the grass so long the mother beetles can't get to the soil to lay eggs, and keeps the soil so cool that the eggs in it can't develop.
It's a WHOLE lot cheaper than drugging your grass to get it to come out right, and making Maryland crabs way more expensive because way less of them survive to get big enough to eat.  And it doesn't kill pets or make children sick.

© Patricia Jo Heil, 2013-2018 All Rights Reserved

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