February 2 2008 Timely Tips




February 2, 2008

  • Ball Moss doesn’t kill trees, but can become very unsightly. If this is the case, then treat with a potassium bicarbonate or copper hydroxide product. Always follow label instructions and consider hiring a certified tree professional for those super large trees.
  • Irish potato seed pieces can be planted now. Look for varieties such as White Kennebec, White Cobbler, Red LaSoda and Red Pontiac.
  • Good gardeners get the jump on their spring tomatoes and peppers by potting them up in larger containers. When they fill that the chance of the last frost has passed, they proceed in planting their larger transplants into their gardens. Wouldn’t you want the first tomatoes on your block?
  • Bring dormant branches of spring flowering trees and shrubs indoors, crush the bottom end with a hammer and set in water for a spectacular array of forced blooms.
  • Purple Martin houses should be checked & readied, depending on the weather and sightings of the martins along the coast. Feb.1 is the average arrival date for older martins at established colony sites. Yearling martins, the age-group that typically colonize new breeding sites, don’t begin arriving until 4-6 weeks later, and continue arriving for an additional 10-12 weeks in the south. This means martins can be attracted to new housing through mid-May. No matter where you live, keep your housing open through June. Martins may arrive and begin nesting as late as the end of June, anywhere in North America.

David Rodriguez is the County Extension Agent-Horticulture with the Texas AgriLife Extension Service in Bexar County. For more information, call the Master Gardener “Hotline” (210) 467-6575 or visit our County Extension website at http://bexar-tx.tamu.edu.

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