gardening

LSU AgCenter

Mealy bugs, aphids, leaf hoppers, and white flies have had all summer to build their populations in your garden. Spider mites can be damaging to many plants too. Year round spray oil or all-seasons oil are low-toxicity pesticides for these pests.

LSU AgCenter

Beans, beans, they're good for your heart. The more you eat, the more you should consider growing in your vegetable garden.

Beans are an easy crop to grow in a home garden, and yield a very high rate of return with very little input.

The two most commonly grown beans in Louisiana are the lima bean and the snap bean-- which can also is referred to as the string bean.

Columbine "Swan Blue white" ...bicolored columbines grace landscapes in April with their stately flower stalks arising above the plant foliage.
LSU AgCenter

Gardeners can utilize the intense heat of the summer sun to control soil-born pests in vegetable gardens. Through solarization, you can use heat from the sunlight to control pathogenic fungi, nematodes, and weed seeds in the soil.

Solarization is the process of heating the soil in our beds under a covering of clear plastic using the energy of the sunlight, similar to the way a greenhouse might work. It can only be used on an empty bed, so as you remove vegetable crops you might have a perfect opportunity to use solarization.

Rick Bogren / LSU AgCenter

Summer flowering vines can add color and fragrance to any landscape. They could add shade and screening if they're allowed to cover an overhead structure. No other group of landscape plants can provide the same effect that vines can.

This week, we'll talk about a selection of perennial vines that can thrive even during the blistering heat of Louisiana's summer and are best planted in full to part-sun areas of the garden.

Dan Gill/LSU AgCenter

Far too hot to be gardening outside, but this shouldn't stop you from gardening indoors in the air conditioning.

There shouldn't be much to plant in your garden in July. This is the time for maintenance. There will still be weeding and watering and weekly grass mowing, of course, but this is not to say that you can't or shouldn't be planting anything this month.

But wouldn't you rather be inside? Adding houseplants to your living room, study, kitchen, or even bathroom can liven up the room.

LSU AgCenter

Hydroponics is a unique and interesting way to grow fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flours. It can be used to describe one of several ways that plants can grow without soil.

Mediums for growing plants hydroponically might include containers filled with gravel, sand, vermiculite, crushed rock, styrofoam, cinder, expanded shale, or hadite.

LSU AgCenter

The high temperatures we're bound to encounter can take their toll on spring and early summer vegetables. Tomatoes will set fewer flowers; snap beans will produce poorer quality beans. Conversely, with some vegetables... the hotter it gets, the better they do.

Remember that mid-summer gardening is different from gardening in the spring. You'll need to remember thorough irrigation to counter the summer's long stretches of hot, dry conditions.

LSU AgCenter

Blackberries are by far one of the easiest food crops to grow in south Louisiana. But a lack of understanding often keeps gardners from incorporating this wonderful fruit into their landscape.

Some gardeners avoid planting this easily controllable crop because blackberries tend to have a reputation for getting out of control and creating a bramble jungle. Understanding the growth cycle and proper pruning of blackberries is critical to increasing the yield of your crop.

Allen Owings / LSU AgCenter

Spring is short in Louisiana. Weather rapidly transitions from winter to summer. But if you look for it and you're aware of the signs, spring actually starts to show up in February in Louisiana, especially in the southern part of the state.

Spring lingers through late April and into May. So we actually have eight weeks of spring weather, which isn't so bad. But whichever way you look at it, May is the first month of summer in Louisianans, so now is the time to switch from spring gardening activities to summer ones.

LSU AgCenter

The foliage on your spring flowering bulbs like daffodils, tulips, and hyacinths is probably beginning to look a little ratty in your landscape by now. Late April to early May is a great time to dig these spring flowering bulbs out of the garden where it's possible.

If these bulbs happen to be growing in the lawn or close to a three or shrub, consider leaving them in the landscape to go dormant naturally. It's not worth disturbing the root systems of other plants in order to properly store these bulb.

For the best results for next year's blooms for those bulbs that you can get out of the ground, use a pitchfork instead of a shovel. With a pitchfork, you'll loosen the soil but won't sever roots or accidentally cut a bulb in half the way you might do with a shovel.

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