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Southeast Gardening: Gardening Calendar

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

Want some advice on what garden tasks to do and when? Southeast gardening contributor Linda Askey shares her to-do list.

Southeast Regional Map

March

  • Feed roses and perennials as they begin to grow.
  • Trim back ragged liriope before new growth begins.
  • Prune early shrubs such as spirea, forsythia, and French hydrangeas after they bloom, if needed.
  • Fertilize both warm- and cool-season grasses as recommended on the bag.
  • Plant pansies and cool-weather vegetables immediately.

April

  • Pull weeds before they develop seeds.
  • Mulch to keep down weeds and clean up garden beds.
  • Plant summer veggies after the garden is frost free and the soil is warm.
  • Let daffodil foliage stand until it starts to yellow naturally.
  • Fertilize beds of shrubs and perennials as growth begins.

May

  • Plant heat-loving vegetables at least two weeks after the last frost.
  • Enjoy springs flowers by keeping a fresh bouquet indoors.
  • Make fresh salads now while lettuce is abundant; pull out plants when they begin to grow tall.
  • Prune faded flowers from roses and geraniums to improve their appearance and encourage plants to produce more.

June

  • Cut back petunias for tight growth and full color.
  • Mow lawns weekly to keep them looking good.
  • Cutting the blooms of French hydrangeas such as Endless Summer will help them bloom again.
  • Tie tomatoes onto their support to help with the load of heavy fruit.
  • Cut the flower stalks of lamb's ears and pull out matted leaves.

July

  • Raise the cutting height of your lawnmower during dry weather.
  • Water in the morning so foliage dries and disease is minimal.
  • Cut back old-fashioned mums by half to make them branch.
  • Remove the tips of basil when flowers and seed begin to form.
  • Replant summer flowers and vegetables to keep beds productive.

August

  • Save water by using soaker hoses that minimize evaporation. Turn down the pressure on sprinklers to avoid mist.
  • Sow seeds of sugar snap peas this month for a fall harvest. Give them a trellis to climb.
  • Pull up tired annuals and deadhead the ones that are still healthy. The whole garden will look happier.
  • Don't mow drought-stressed lawns too short. Raise your mower level.

September

  • Plant leafy greens -- lettuce, broccoli, collards, and kale --early this month for the fall garden.
  • Start a compost pile. There will be much material to add in the months to come.
  • Buy bulbs as soon as they arrive for the best selection; store in a cool location until you plant.
  • Enjoy a sampling of your garden indoors in a vase.

October

  • Make pesto from your basil before frost blackens its delicious leaves.
  • Seal your deck and outdoor wooden structures.
  • Plant parsley and cilantro to enjoy the fresh herbs this fall and in spring.
  • Remove fallen leaves from your lawn so they don't affect your grass. Blow or vacuum leaves from flowerbeds to avoid breakage from a rake.

November

  • Winterize your mower and other power equipment for the season.
  • Plant spring bulbs. Add a few daffodils each year to enjoy a spectacular spring.
  • Cut the center stalk of broccoli, but let the plant remain to develop side shoots.
  • Gather leaves on your lawn with a bagging mower; they'll compost more quickly.

December

  • Apply a new layer of mulch to give the garden a tidy appearance.
  • Prune evergreens for use in holiday decorations.
  • Put fresh, fluffy bedding in the doghouse for the cold days ahead.
  • Keep bird feeders filled to support winter residents and bring color to your winter garden.