Winter is coming or going. Not sure. There's a shadow involved or something.

Hello again!

With Groundhog Day Thursday, February 2, we can only hope that Punxsutawney Phil does not see his shadow. Tradition has it that if Phil sees his shadow, he will be frightened and will return to his burrow, indicating that there will be six more weeks of winter. If he does not see his shadow, then spring is on the way. You know I’m ready for spring!

Groundhog Day is a popular observance in many parts of the United States. Some states have adopted their own groundhogs. The official groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, lives at Gobbler’s Knob near Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. The town has attracted thousands of visitors over the years to experience various Groundhog Day events and activities on February 2.

Even if spring is weeks away, there are some things we can do on our warm(er) winter days. When the temperatures are forecasted into the upper 40’s and 50’s, it’s a great time to get outside and be active.

One thing we can do with temperatures in the 40’s and above is to control broadleaf weeds in our lawn and landscapes. Weed Free Zone from ferti-lome works great in cooler temperatures. The weeds are not controlled as fast as with warmer temperatures, but you’ll notice in the spring your lawn is weed free. I also like Hi-Yield Killzall to use on invading warm season turf during the winter when the turf is completely dormant; I use it to take out weeds as well. Used carefully in landscape areas, it’s safe to control weeds around landscape plants - just keep the spray off of the desirable plants. If you have time now, I would say it’s ok to apply ferti-lome For All Seasons Lawn Food with Crabgrass & Weed Preventer. When applied and watered in when the soil is not frozen, it will go to work as the soil temperatures warm up.

Speaking of Groundhog Day and spring, there’s one Groundhog Day event in Kansas that’s important to me. The Groundhog Run is Sunday, January 29th in Kansas City. The run is a Benefit for Ability KC. Over the years, Ability KC has raised more than $4.75 million for children with special needs. Annually, more than 3,000 individuals and families receive services for outpatient medical rehabilitation, therapeutic preschool, and employment services at Ability KC.

A few years ago, my best friend Ed was using the services of Ability KC after his stroke. So you know I had to sign up for the Virtual 5K and run 3.2 miles for Ed.

If you’ve not signed up for your ferti-lome Lawn Care Program this year, do so before Groundhog Day. You’ll save 20% on the programs this month, and we’ll even store or deliver your program for you.

Your friend in the garden,

Marty Johnson
Owner - Johnson's Garden Center