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A Gardener's Calendar For May

May is the time of year that things really bloom in the yard.  It can also be a frustrating month with cold and wet weather.  Needless to say spring is in full swing. 

Seeds can be started outside anytime this month.  Watch for any wet periods when seeds can rot.

Cool weather crops can be started still but time is running out.  Start them before the 15th of the month.  Peas will catch up to their April planted counterparts in no time.

Pinch back pansies for continued color all month and into June.

PRUNING

Prune spring flowering shrubs as finish flowering.  I prune back the rose of Sharon 1/3.   The more you prune it the bigger the blooms this summer.  You can still do this the first week of May.

LAWN

Mow your lawn for the first time.  Be sure to have sharp blades so you do not tear the grass. 

You can apply lime anytime this month.   If you fertilize your lawn be sure to water it in well. If the weather is dry and the lawn becomes stressed by the end of May do not feed it until you have watered.

Dig up weeds by hand or use an organic weed control.  Remember some organic products can harm the grass as well as kill weeds.

Apply milky spore or nematodes for grubs.  If you must use chemicals, be sure to read the label and apply at the right time.

PERENNIALS

Divide hosta and chrysanthemums as the new growth appears early in the month.

Plant lilies in areas where there are daffodils, the lilies hide the daffodil leaves as they die out.  Do not cut the leaves of the bulbs as they are needed to recharge the bulb for next year.

Move amaryllis outside in spot they will be exposed to at least 4 hours of sunshine.

BIRDS

Get a hummingbird feeder.  Use ¼ cup sugar and 1 cup water to make the nectar.

ANNUALS

Use tropical houseplants around the yard to create an interesting look.

When you plant annuals be sure to move them out late in the day or when it is cloudy.  That way they will have some time to recover before a full days sunshine.

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