Posts Tagged ‘fertilizer’

This is the number one question we get from customers when they are trying to decide if they want to ‘try’ and hanging basket again this year…

For many,  growing Hanging Baskets, Planters, or even annuals in landscape design is a task they just don’t know if they want to take on again this year. Last season their annuals just did not ‘last’ all summer. They looked good for a month or so after they got home but then went down hill from there. Many people will say ” but I watered every day”!

If the above statement sounds like something that you may have running through your head, let me give you a few simple steps to succeeding at growing annual baskets and planter.

#1 “But I water every day” to that statement I would first ask you, ” When you are watering do you water enough that you see the water running freely from the bottom of your basket/planter?” If not, I dare say that you are under watering your plants. If the water is not reaching the bottom of the pot your roots are not able to evenly drink up the water that they require.

#2 My question to you is ” How often do your fertilize? Have you fertilized at all?” At Garden Crossings we recommend fertilizing your baskets/planters at least every other week, although weekly would be great with a low concentrate water soluble fertilizer. We recommend and personally use Proven Winners Water Soluble Fertilizer.  The reason you need to fertilize your plants is because every time you water you are flushing a little bit of the nutrients/fertilizer from the pot. Like humans, plants need nutrients to perform to their highest standards. The fertilizer will help keep your flowers flowering and your foliage nice and green. You may even feel like you have a plant on steroids if you keep up on the fertilizing. If you do start to feel like you have ‘too much’ growth we recommend giving your plants a ‘haircut’ or a trim to keep them nice and full. Don’t cut back on the fertilizer because this is keeping your plant healthy.

Now if you are thinking there is no way I am going to fertilize every one to two weeks we do have another option for you. That option is a continuous release fertilizer. Generally we recommend Continuous Release for ground planting as it will not flush away in the ground as fast as in a basket. But if you are feeling like “I will fertilize, but I am only going to do it one time” , This option is better than nothing.

And Lastly #3 if watering is a problem for you and you feel like you just can’t keep up or are always forgetting to do it, we recommend installing an inexpensive self watering system. We have found a system that is easy to use, and does a great job, it is the Waterwise System from Proven Winner. Basically all you need is the kit and a scissors. Here is a link to show how simple and easy it is to install the Waterwise System. You can go away on vacation for a week and come home to beautiful flowers.

If you have any questions on watering or fertilization of annuals please feel free to contact us at sales@gardencrossings.com

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I recently got a first hand look at the wonderful  Proven Winners annual introductions for 2012.  The first one I will talk about is Supertunia “White Russian”.  This petunia will give you continuous color all summer long. The white flower has nice chocolate brown/purple veining.  Match ‘White Russian” with the dark foliage of Ipomoea and the veining looks black, mix with pink it takes on a pink color, and when paired with purples… you guessed it, it looks purple.  “White Russian” is a trailing petunia and does not need to be dead headed( alot of petunias need to be deadheaded) this is a much cleaner and less sticky type of petunia. “White Russian” is a great plant to use in hanging baskets or patio planters. We do have one very huge to tip to give you when planting up your planters and want to have good results. Fertilizer!!!! You must fertilize and water your plants regularly for the very best results. Also we do recommend that the beginning of July and also early to mid August that you give your plants a ‘haircut’. I generally trim my plant back to the bottom of the pot. It may sacrifice blooms for a week or so, but the end result is a much nicer/fuller plant. Another great product that I use at my house is the WaterWise system. It is a self watering system that hooks up to my faucet. I do have a timer also so I can set it and forget it.

I will leave you here with a few photos . Enjoy Supertunia ‘White Russian’

Supertunia 'White Russian'

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Amazing Pretty Much Picasso & Snow Princess Petunias Planted in a Pamela Crawford Basket. The transition this planter has made over the past 2 1/2 months is amazing. Diane has done an excellent job in keeping her plants well watered and feeds them often. Pretty Much Picasso is a very thirsty and hungry plant and does require good care to keep it looking this amazing! Photos by Diane K.

May 10, 2010

May 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

July 28, 2010

July 28, 2010

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Keep in mind that your beautiful combination containers are really small scale gardens. Healthy plants, good quality potting soil, and fertilizer are great garden starters but with a little tender care your containers will remain healthy and gorgeous all season long.

Observe your containers regularly. Don’t forget to take down your hanging baskets to take a look inside. Some birds seem to think they are great nesting sites! Check the undersides of leaves and stem branches for bugs and insects. Remove any bugs you see and if necessary consult with your local garden retailer with any questions. Clean out any dead foliage to prevent rot and try to avoid excessive wet foliage and poor air movement to keep your plants healthy. Deadheading or cutting off spent flowers will improve the look of your plants and promote developing new flowers.

Most plants tolerate and even benefit from pruning and trimming. As the season progresses more vigorous plants can be trimmed back to blend in better and any untidy growth may be removed. A fresh reshaping of your planter will improve the look of your design and a healthy trim will produce a thicker, more lush new growth. Taller varieties of plants may also benefit from staking to improve the form of your combination containers. With a little TLC you can enjoy a full season of fantastic container gardens!

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Maximize the beauty of your container gardens with careful planning. Observe and measure the amount of sunlight your containers will receive so you can choose your plants accordingly. Drainage holes are a must for your containers!

A quality potting soil is a “must have” for container gardens. You will need a mix that offers good drainage but also has a good water-holding capacity. Too much water may cause root rot while some plants may not recover well from being too dry. Easy to install drip irrigation systems are available to help with consistency for your watering needs.

Your container plants not only need water but food for healthy growth and blooms. Fertilizer is a must! Slow-release as well as water soluble fertilizers are available to provide the nutrients your plants will require.

Your garden professional will be able to supply you with a quality potting soil and fertilizer to help you grow stunning garden containers and keep them fresh looking all season long.

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