Marianne Binetti is the author of "Easy Answers for Great Gardens" and eight other gardening books. She has a degree in horticulture from WSU and will answer questions from her Web site at www.binettigarden.com.
The second week in June means your roses have bloomed and are looking for more food for the second wave of flowers. Fertilize roses, perennials and annuals this week. Anything growing in a container, from lettuce to petunias needs, fertilizer this month as the days are longer and the plants are working overtime producing new growth.
This also is a good week to pinch back any leggy petunias and prune back sedum “Autumn Joy” plants to one-half their size. By pruning succulents such as sedum now, you will encourage branching and more upright plants that will not need staking. Shear back rock-garden plants such as creeping phlox, basket-of-gold and candytuft that have finished blooming. If foxgloves or delphiniums have bloomed, cut back the main stalk now, and the plants will send up side shoots for an encore of color.
And now some good news: New hydrangeas work like magic in Western Washington gardens.
The beginning of June 2013 arrives with a flood of questions about damp, wet and suffering plants. May ended with rain and more rain and this brought mushrooms, fungus, a plethora of moss and problems for heat-loving plants such as tomatoes, cucumbers and geraniums. On the bright side, lettuce and lobelia have never been better. Here’s the answers to the most common complaints about our water world:
The last week of May means it is time for some pruning if you have spring flowering shrubs such as rhododendrons, forsythia, quince or viburnums that already have bloomed.
The third week of May means it is time to fill your garden with color. Gardeners all over the world bask in the beauty of natural color. Take a cue from global inspiration to design a patio or deck that will inspire joy all summer long. Here are winning color combinations.
Gardeners, your lawn needs your attention right now. This is the week you should get into your garden and fertilize grass with a slow release plant food.
Head to the nursery this week because new plants are arriving daily and the best plants go first. Last week, I gushed over unbeatable plants for the sun, and to be fair to gardeners on the dark side, here is a partial list of the best-looking, well-behaved plants for the shaded areas of the garden.
Why put up with problem plants when there are so many well-behaved trees, shrubs and flowers that love to grow here and never complain?
The beginning of April is always going to be somebody’s heartache. Spring can be a flirt but the nights are still cold. If you fall madly in love with a gorgeous but tender young thing at the nursery, you will risk losing the entire plant after one frosty night.
Spring and summer color in the Pacific Northwest is as easy as picking the right plant for the right place. If nature sings with flowers you can create an entire symphony of blooms just by placing plants in the perfect location.
Spring is here, but you still need to protect your flowers. Don’t get too confident and think you can start planting warm-season crops.