Adding landscape plants to your yard is a great way to brighten up your home, but keeping your plants healthy can sometimes be a challenge.
Rainy areas or areas with more irrigation in particular often lose soil nutrients before the plant has a chance to take them up. Using small and frequent doses of fertilizer rather than large infrequent applications can help reduce pollution from fertilizer runoff as well as ensure that your plants are getting access to the nutrients that they need.
Pick a fertilizer that fits your plants needs the best. For example, fruiting trees may require more potassium than landscape trees in order to produce fruits. On the other hand, grasses and lush greenery may need more nitrogen, as most of their growth is foliar. Always check the label for information about application rates and plant type. Using the right combination of nutrients as well as picking a medium, such as a liquid or granular, can go a long way to ensure healthy plant growth from the get-go.
Liquid fertilizers are a great way to give a rapidly available shot of nutrients to your plants while also providing moisture. These often come in a nutrient form that is easier for plants to take up, to solve immediate fertilizer needs. However, granular fertilizers offer the added benefit of a slower release, for less frequent applications.
Sometimes pest issues are noticed late in the game when it is more difficult to address. Always keep an eye out for unwanted guests.
Checking in with your plants as often as possible can help reduce instances of infestation that can damage your plants. A quick once-over every day takes little time and makes it easier to spot when something new has appeared on the plant. Many harmful insects are difficult to identify as bugs, so what may appear as a fluffy, waxy powder on your leaves may actually be a mealy bug or scale insect. Be sure to check under the leaves and in the joints of the branches, as many insects seek refuge from the elements.
Look for signs of a stressed plant such as a wilted look even though ample water is available, yellowing and excessive leaf drop on more than half of the plant out of season, or spots of any color forming on the leaves.
Not all plants can tolerate the same elements. Finding the right place for the plants in your yard is just as important as finding the right neighborhood for your family.
It is always better to disturb the plant as little as possible once it has been planted. However, if you must dig it up for a move, check the roots to make sure that they are healthy. Roots should look clean when broken, and are usually white with some moisture inside. Brown, hollow roots are a sign of bacterial infection and may be the reason why your plant isn’t able to take up enough water.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Doing your research before putting plants in the ground can save both time and money in the long run. Most potted plants will come with instructions for shade and sun requirements so that you can plan accordingly when mapping out your yard.
We watched these trees get planted as little 1 to 1 1/4 inch caliper trees in the Lowes parking lot in Pasco, Washington about 10 years ago. They have struggled for years. Every tree is dying due to damage to the trunk.
Unfortunately, nursery's don't have a spell. We don't have anything special that keeps our trees more alive than they can be in a landscape setting. Although that is a bummer for us, it is a good thing for you. That means that after planting your trees, you can be sure to have healthy, happy trees in your yard!
There are a few trees we absolutely love, and one that made it to the top of our list this year is the Liriodendron tulipifera ‘JFS-Oz’ Emerald City® Tulip Tree.
We love the spring blossoms and flowers that brighten up the cloudy days, but spring is probably the second best time to plant trees.