If April showers bring May flowers……..

Good grief. Every day I review the upcoming 10 day forecast on the weather channel. Rain, showers, a few showers, rain, partly cloudy, rain, more rain, etc. So much for the drought. This will put people in Seattle mode. Thinking that water isn’t an issue this year. Well, maybe not right now. But wait until August. In spite of the sky, start planning for hot August days and nights. It is my plan to try to reduce my water bill by another 10% over last year.

I will re-do two big planting beds with the orange drip hose. You wind it back and forth through the bed and then cover it with soil and mulch to hide it and to keep the evaporation and water loss to a minimum. A great example of this method is the new planting and demonstration beds at Edwards Nursery. Check it out.
And, here is another little bit of advice: if you can amend your soil with compost, forgo even the slow release granular and other fertilizers this year. (I am talking about planting beds now, not containers on the patio). All this rain will push lots of new growth. Enough, in fact, to keep the aphids happy for quite some while. Additional fertilizers will just encourage more growth, especially if they are high in nitrogen (look for the N on the label, often a BIG number). Compost on the other hand, provides a steady slow release of nutrients as it breaks down, no additional chemical rush and no flush of tender juicy growth.

For years I put a special super secret food and fertilizer recipe on my roses. Two years ago I stopped, just to see what would happen. They continued to grow like gangbusters, 5-6 feet tall and they bloomed like crazy. They didn’t need any help from me.

Coming up: more on what you should do in the next couple of weeks………….