Winter is on my head; spring is in my heart.

Hello again!

We are just a month into winter, but spring seems just around the corner. There have been quite a few questions in the store in regards to what to do about the early spring bulbs that are starting to emerge. Yesterday I noticed daffodil leaves about 2” high in my front planter. It’s not unusual for daffodils, crocus and other early bloomers to send leaves up ahead of the mid and late flowering bulbs. I recall my bulbs that came up first a couple of years ago had foliage burn after the extreme sub zero temperatures we "enjoyed" in February. Thankfully the blooming portion of the bulb was deep in the soil protected from the extreme temperatures, and the blooms were as nice as ever.

One thing that I noticed from the cold of 2021 was that my broadleaf evergreens such as euonymus, nandina, boxwood and the like suffered with leaf burn at best. My established nandina and crape myrtle experienced top kill and given time in the early season came back fine. I’ve noticed again this year that the nandina foliage is suffering from the cold in late December. I don’t expect any winter kill this year though.

As always I recommend ferti-lome Tree & Shrub Food during the fall - or winter if one didn’t get to it - for an early spring green up on landscape plants. On spring flowering bulbs, I recommend Hi-Yield Dutch Bulb Food. Our bulbs that naturalize (return every year) benefit from a feeding as they grow in the spring.

Another project we’re doing at the stores is getting our weed preventer down in both landscape and rock areas. By timing ahead of precipitation there is no watering needed following application. For landscape areas, Hi-Yield Weed and Grass Stopper is effective. For gravel or mulch areas I recommend Hi-Yield Killzall Extended Weed Control that will kill weeds present and prevent weeds for up to 6 months - a great tool for the landscape. Be sure to keep Killzall off of your desirable plants!

With new cacti in stock and a foliage shipment from Florida next week it’s a good time to come and take a stroll through the greenhouses on a cold winter day.

Your friend in the garden,

Marty Johnson
Owner - Johnson's Garden Center