Organic Matters

The Online Newsletter from Rohde’s Nursery and Nature Store and Green Sense Fertilizers

Rohde’s September 2017 Organic Gardening Calendar

  1. PREFACE
  2. VEGETABLES, HERBS & ANNUAL FRUITS
  3. FLOWERS & ORNAMENTAL GRASSES
  4. TREES, SHRUBS, & VINES
  5. LAWN, TURF GRASSES & GROUND COVERS
  6. OTHER_THINGS_TO_DO_THIS_MONTH

We are in USDA Cold Hardiness Zone 8a with an annual minimum temperature of 15 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit,
and in Texas AgriLife Extension Service District 4 (East Region) - North (Dallas):
http://dallas.tamu.edu/, http://dallas.tamu.edu/extension/d4/.
Our soil is predominantly blackland prairie clay or "Houston Black" officially with areas of sandy Cross Timber soils north, east, and through parts of Ft Worth's Tarrant County. (
http://www.soils4teachers.org/files/s4t/k12outreach/tx-state-soil-booklet.pdf).

Plant heat zones for Dallas-Ft Worth: The zones give the average number of days a year that an area has over 86 degrees temperatures. The temperature many plants apparently become affected by heat. Click here for more information: http://www.beorganic.com/additional_info/plant_heat_zones.html.

NOAA’s Weather Forecast:

http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/enso_advisory/ensodisc.html

EL NIÑO/SOUTHERN OSCILLATION (ENSO)
DIAGNOSTIC DISCUSSION
issued by
CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER/NCEP/NWS
and the International Research Institute for Climate and Society
10 August 2017
ENSO Alert System Status: Not Active

Synopsis: ENSO-neutral is favored (~85% chance during Jul-Sep, decreasing to ~55% during Dec-Feb) through the Northern Hemisphere winter 2017-18.

http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/90day/fxus05.html

PROGNOSTIC DISCUSSION FOR LONG-LEAD SEASONAL OUTLOOKS
NWS CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER COLLEGE PARK MD
830 AM EDT THU JUL 20 2017

SUMMARY OF THE OUTLOOK FOR NON-TECHNICAL USERS

The current neutral phase of ENSO is expected to persist at least into early winter, as the chances of El Nino development during the next few months have decreased. Enso-neutral is still favored, albeit slightly, during winter 2017/18, though the odds of a weak wintertime La Nina have increased significantly since last month. At this time, the set of seasonal outlooks is based on the expectation of a borderline neutral/La Nina event. As the ENSO situation becomes more certain over the next few months, adjustments will be made accordingly to the seasonal outlooks.

Here’s pictures to explain the when, where, and how much of a change in temperature and precipitation we should get with this forecast through the fall and winter. It’s easier than trying to read the NOAA reports referenced in the links.
http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/90day/

/products/predictions/long_range/lead01/off01_temp.gif

/products/predictions/long_range/lead03/off03_temp.gif

/products/predictions/long_range/lead05/off05_temp.gif

Sep-Oct-Nov 2017

Nov-Dec-Jan 2017-18

Jan-Feb-Mar 2018

 

http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/long_range/lead01/off01_prcp.gif

/products/predictions/long_range/lead03/off03_prcp.gif

/products/predictions/long_range/lead05/off05_prcp.gif

Sep-Oct-Nov 2017

Nov-Dec-Jan 2017-18

Jan-Feb-Mar 2018

Last month the NOAA’s weather guess was for about 50% chance of neutral or no Ninos-Ninas to a 50% chance of El Nino. El Nino means cooler and wetter conditions, but we were to still be warmer than normal with more rain than normal. Now they give us an 85% chance of neutral conditions to a 15% chance of El Nino turning into a 55% chance of neutral to a 45% chance of a weak La Nina during the winter. La Nina means warmer and dryer conditions, but NOAA is giving us the same warmth with unknown rainfall for this winter now. So we probably lose the rain. I would wish for a hurricane or something to bring back the rain, but I’m not taking the hit for more like this last one.

PREFACE

Normally we are blazing hot and dry in August and are looking forward to mid to low 90’s in the day and mid 70’s at night to start September, but we have had that for a couple of week already. Usually you start planting for the fall as soon as the rains come in September, but we already have that too. Still, I worry summer may come back for a finally, but with NOAA predicting dryer weather, it may be good to plant stuff now. We have fall vegetables, seeds, and Elbon rye, Crimson clover and Hairy Vetch ground cover I now. Cool season herbs will come later. We don’t have fall perennials and annuals in yet, but we are having a sale for September on all of the plants we do have in stock. Call for new plant availability or check on our website, www.beorganic.com/ or our Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/Rohdes-Organic-Nursery-Pet-Supply-730155743681916/.

Plan for hardscape jobs now: Deciding now on what you have wanted to build in your yard will allow easier planning before the unpredictable weather interferes with your work. We can help you with whatever you need. See our “Services” tab on
www.beorganic.com or www.beorganic.com/additional_info/Rohdes_Services_We_Offer.htm.

VEGETABLES, HERBS & ANNUAL FRUITS

Keep growing your warm season garden, watering, fertilizing, and chasing bugs, as you have been, but get your cool season beds ready.

We have fall vegetables in now, and we have new seeds for the fall also.

Prepare the beds with dry fertilizer like GreenSense 3-3-3 or GS All Purpose Lawn & Garden fertilizer, also start with a fast release organic fertilizer like blood meal and/or a liquid nutrient like GreenSense Fish Solubles, GS Fish & Kelp, or GS Foliar Juice to get the cool season vegetables started quickly for a good harvest before the freezes come. With established roots and plant covers, you may also be able to extend their harvest into the winter. Assuming we have a winter.

If you’re not planting a fall garden or letting the spring garden go on, don’t leave the beds baron. Leaving the mulch on the beds is ok, but a cover crop would be better. We have winter cover crop seeds of Elbon rye, Crimson clove, and Hairy Vetch that you can start to sow in September.

Fall garden planting dates are based on how long it takes the vegetable to reach harvest, versus the time to the first average freeze date, and the temperature needed to set fruit. Some vegetables need cooler weather to set fruit like tomatoes.

With these planting recommendations below, if not mentioned, you are better off planting seeds earlier in the planting period and transplants in the later part.

The following are normally planted in September (or later). Dates are for seeds unless specified: S=Seed, T=Transplants.

Vegetable

Soil Temperatures

Fall Planting
Dates

Min

Optimum
Range

Max

Artichoke (Globe) (Cynara scolymus)

25, 45

>50, 70-80

>85 dormant

Aug 1 (S)
Oct 1 (T)

Beans, Lima Bush (Phaseolus limensis var. limenanus)

60

65-85

85

Jul 26 - Aug 31

Beans, Lima Pole (Phaseolus limensis)

60

65-85

85

Aug 15 - Sep 20

Beans, Pinto (Phaseolus vulgaris)

60

60-85

95

Aug 1 - Sep 20

Beans, Snap Bush (Phaseolus vulgaris var. humilis)

55-60

60-85

95

Aug 1 - Sep 20

Beans, Snap Pole (Phaseolus vulgaris)

55-60

60-85

95

Jul 26 - Aug 31

Beans, Yellow Bush (Phaseolus vulgaris var. humilis)

60

60-85

95

Aug 1 - Sep 20

Beets (Beta vulgaris)

40-45

50-85

95

Sep 6 - Sep 30

Broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. botrytis), plants

40

45-85

90

Jul 26 - Sep 6 (S)
Aug 20 - Sep 15 (T)

Brussels Sprouts (Brassica oleracea)

40

68-75

85

Aug 9 - Sep 6 (S)
Aug 20 - Sep 15 (T)

Cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. capitata), plants

40-50

45-95

100

Jul 26 - Sep 6 (S)
Aug 20 - Sep 15 (T)

Cabbage, Chinese (Brassica pekinensis)

50

50-80

100

Aug 9 - Aug 23 (S)
Aug 23 - Sep 15 (T)

Carrot (Daucus carota var. sativus)

40-50

45-85

90-95

Aug 9 - Sep

Cauliflower (Brassica oleracea var. botrytis), plants

40

45-85

90-100

Jul 26 - Sep 6 (S)
Aug 20 - Sep 15 (T)

Celeriac (Apium graveolens var. Rapaceum) Grown like celery

40

70-75

85

Mid, Late Summer(T)

Celery (Apium graveolens var. dulce)

40

60-70

85

Mid, Late Summer(T)

Chard, Swiss (Beta vulgaris var. cicla)

40

50-85

95-100

Jul 26 - Sep 15

Collards (Brassica oleracea var. acephala)

40-50

60-70

85

Aug 23 - Sep 20

Cucumber, Pickling (Cucumis sativus)

60-65

60-95

90-105

Aug 1 - Sep 6

Cucumber, Slicing (Cucumis sativus)

60-65

60-95

90-105

Aug 1 - Sep 6

Garlic (Allium sativum)

 

<65

85

Sep 15 - Oct 18

Tyfon Or Holland Greens (hybrid of Chinese cabbage x stubble turnip)

 

 

 

Aug 25 - Oct 1

Kale (Brassica oleracea var. acephala)

40-50

70-75

90-100

Aug 15 - Oct 15

Leeks (Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum ), seeds

40

60-70

90

Sep 10 - Oct 1 (S)
Oct 1 - Nov 1 (T)

Lettuce, Butterhead (Lactuca sativa)

35-40

40-80

85

Aug 9 - Oct 15

Lettuce, Cos or Romaine (Lactuca sativa)

35-40

40-80

70-85

Aug 9 - Oct 15

Lettuce, Head (Lactuca sativa)

35-40

40-80

85

Aug 9 - Oct 15

Lettuce, Leaf (Lactuca sativa)

35-40

40-80

70-85

Aug 9 - Oct 15

Mustard (greens) (Brassica juncea)

40

45-85

105

Jul 26 - Sep 6

Onion, Bulbing (Allium cepa)
    Seeds/Transplants (Slips) for this year bulbs

35-50

50-95

90-95

Sep 1 - Oct 15 (S)
N.R. (T)

Onion, Bunching [Scallions] (Allium cepa)
    Seeds/Transplants (Sets) for scallions this year

35-50

50-95

90-95

Sep 1 - Oct 15 (S,T)

Parsley (Petroselinum crispum)

40-50

50-85

90

Jul 26 - Oct 4

Peas, English (Pisum sativum)

40

40-75

80-85

Aug 23 - Nov 1

Peas, Southern (Vigna unguiculata var. unguiculata)

>65

>65

 

Jul 1 - Sep 6

Radish (Raphanus sativus)

40

45-90

90-95

Sep 20 - Nov 15

Rutabaga (Brassica napus var. napobrassica)

40

45-85

 

Aug 1 - Oct 15

Salsify (Tragopogon pratensis)

 

 

 

Maybe Sep or Fall

Shallots (Allium cepa var. aggregatum) (like onions)

 

45-95

 

Sep 1 - Oct 15 (S,T)

Spinach (Spinacia oleracea)

35-40

45-75

85-100

Jul 26 - Nov 1

Turnip (Brassica rapa var. rapifera)

40

60-105

100-105

Aug 1 - Nov 1

See http://www.beorganic.com/additional_info/Rohdes_Planting_Dates,_Spring_Fall.htm for the whole planting charts with explanations of columns, sources, and other information.

Herbs:

We will get cool season herbs in this month. Call for availability.

FLOWERS & ORNAMENTAL GRASSES

We will be receiving both fall blooming and cool season flowers later this month. Call to check on arrival.

Fertilize initially with a fast release organic fertilizer like blood meal and/or a liquid nutrient like GreenSense Fish Solubles, GS Fish & Kelp, or GS Foliar Juice to get the cool season flowers started quickly and the roots established before the freezes come.

Wildflowers:

You can plant wildflower transplants almost any time as with most perennials. If you are going to sow seeds, there is minimum soil temperatures needed for germination. If the soil is too cold, the seeds will lie dormant until the soil warms in the spring. In our zone 8a, fall is the best time to sow wildflower seeds or to plant most anything: Last half of September thru November is recommended for wildflowers. You want the soil to be warm enough for the seeds to germinate during a time of reliable rainfall. The roots will grow during the winter to give good flower production in the spring.

You can also sow seeds in the early spring, but you will get less flower development. In zone 8 sow in the last half of January thru February. In zone 7 sow to first half of April. These dates are important for annuals to allow them time to reseed themselves.

The planting beds need to be WELL draining, cleared of vegetation, with no deep cultivation to prevent dormant weed seeds from being brought to the surface, and not fertilized, though incorporating compost into the soil is ok and may be needed to improve drainage.

Broadcast the seeds mixed in 4 parts of a carrier like potting soil, perlite, lava sand, to make it easier to disperse evenly. Do not bury or cover the seeds. Roll or press into the surface by walking on them. You should see some exposed on the surface.

Some wildflowers can take partial shade, but will still need at least 5 hours of sun. Most of the sunny wildflowers will need at least 8 hours of full sun.

http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/wildseed/tamuhort.html: Wildflowers In Bloom
http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/wildseed/growing/whentoplant.html: When Do I Plant?
http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/wildseed/growing/howtoplant.html: How Do I Plant My Wildflowers?
http://www.plantanswers.com/wildflower_planting_fall.htm: Wildflowers Grown by Direct Seeding in the Fall
http://www.seedsource.com/downloads/NAScatalog_Howtogrownativeseed.pdf:: How to Grow Native Seeds
http://www.seedsource.com/garden/planting.asp: How to Grow Native Wildflowers
Sally and Andy Wasowski’s book Native Texas Plants, Landscaping Region by Region

 

Ornamental Grasses

Spring is the best time to plant ornamental grasses so they have time to become established for the winter. So plant them quickly this month to give them all the time they can get to become established for the winter. This isn't to say they will not survive a winter if planted later, or even if they are left in pots as our grasses are, but odds do improve. Winter mulch protection should be used after they go dormant.

TREES, SHRUBS, & VINES

Planting:

Crape myrtles and desert willows are flowering so now may be a good time to pick out the color you like.

Fall and winter are the best time to plant most trees and shrubs as it should be cooler and rainier. Ensure the root ball does not dry out. It will dry out before the surrounding soil. Stick a finger or bare stick into the root ball to see if it is dry 2 to 4 inches down depending on size of plant. If so, hand water until the root ball is wet again, maybe 8 inches down. Normal grass irrigation is not enough, so hand water. Check every day until you get an idea on how often you should water.

Choose plants in containers. Smaller container plants can get established quicker as the roots are less disturbed, and grow faster than larger potted or balled & burlap plants too.

Pruning:

Prune storm damaged trees and shrubs and dead parts. Wait for winter when the trees are dormant to do major non-critical, aesthetic pruning. Do tag or mark now what you want to prune in winter.

Some sources say it’s ok to prune Oaks trees that are susceptible to Oak Wilt disease when it is very hot as the insect disease carrier, the Sap Beetle, will not be active. Storm damage will need pruning regardless. It is still very important to paint on Rohde’s Green Sense Tree Goop to the wounds immediately and to insure it stays on for 2 days till the wound’s sap hardens.

Fertilize:

Fertilize your landscape every 3 or 4 months with dry fertilizers. Potted plants, vegetables, and ornamental non-native flowers need fertilizing every month. Use GreenSense Lawn and Garden Fertilizer in 5-2-4 or 6-2-4 NPK.

Roses

Watch for aphids, spider mites and thrips:
http://www.dirtdoctor.com/Aphids_vq758.htm,
http://www.dirtdoctor.com/Spider-Mites_vq604.htm
http://www.dirtdoctor.com/Thrips-Can-Be-Stopped-Before-Ruining-Roses_vq5322.htm)

Next big pruning will be in the fall, but do clean out dead canes, old canes, and dead flowers to give good air circulation, and reduce pests and disease.

Fertilize monthly. Water carefully in this heat. Roses like a lot of water on a regular bases to do their best, but too much can cause root rot. Water two to four times a week for part of the 1 to 2 inches of water they usually need each week. Take any rain into consideration. You want to get the whole root ball wet with the 1 or 2 inches of water. The root ball is 16 to 18 inches deep, so water an inch and dig down near the roots to see how deep the watering got. Adjust watering for 16-18 inches. Roses should be planted in well drained, deeply conditioned soil so watering may go deeper than in your lawn.

Howard Garrett has an Organic Rose Program you can follow to ensure the best care of your roses. https://www.dirtdoctor.com/garden/Rose-Organic-Program_vq2248.htm.

Be aware of Rose Rosette disease that has been very prevalent the last few years. Here’s some more  recent articles explaining most of what is known, unknown, history, and what is being done:
http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/ORN/ph_fructiphilus.htm : Maybe the best article. Read first.
http://www.dallasnews.com/lifestyles/home-and-gardening/headlines/20150218-deadly-virus-is-killing-rosebushes-in-north-texas.ece
https://portal.nifa.usda.gov/web/crisprojectpages/1004350-combatting-rose-rosette-disease-short-and-long-term-approaches.html
https://www.facebook.com/tamuroses
http://www.ballpublishing.com/GrowerTalks/ViewArticle.aspx?articleid=22185
http://whatsupaggiehort.blogspot.com/2016/02/tamu-rose-breeding-genetics-program.html

http://www.rose.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/Rose-Rosette.pdf: This article has a picture of the mite.

https://www.dirtdoctor.com/garden/Rose-Rosette-Newsletter_vq3835.htm
https://www.dirtdoctor.com/garden/Rose-Rosette-Update-3215_vq4313.htm
http://www.ccmgatx.org/gardening-resources/videos/rose-rosette-disease.aspx
http://neilsperry.com/notes/2015/03/rose-rosette-disease/

Pests & Disease

It should be cool enough during this month to use plant oils anytime to help control scale, aphids, and other larva on trees and shrubs. Spray in the cool of the evening if the days are over 85 degrees to avoid burning the leaves. You can also dust with DE or just squirting them off with water or soapy water.

Fall Webworms:
I’ve seen a few around, but can’t tell how bad they will become. For more info and pictures see:
http://www.beorganic.com/additional_info/Tent_Caterpillars_Fall_Webworms.htm

LAWN, TURF GRASSES & GROUND COVERS

Plant

Some consider it too late to plant warm season lawn seed. The roots will not have time to become established before the first freeze, when warm season grass normally goes dormant. I’ve read others who say you can sow Bermuda seed up the middle of September and still have time to establish the roots. St Augustine sod can be planted anytime the soil can be worked, if it is available. It is like planting transplants. It won’t be green in the winter, but the roots should still grow when it is not freezing. With a possible warm La Niña this fall and winter, you may be able to plant seed without any problem.

If you want a green lawn all winter in the sun, over-seed with the perennial variety of rye grass toward the end of the month. Cut the current grass low and apply the rye at the rate of 6-10 pounds per 1000 square feet. Plant perennial rye instead of annual rye. Annual rye grows faster so needs more mowing, watering, & fertilizing, plus it's more disease prone. Perennial rye grass can be used to quickly cover bare soils to protect from erosion. If you have shade in the winter, tall fescue is the only winter grass you can use in shade. Apply about 5-10 pounds per 1000 square feet. Fescue is more drought tolerant than rye so can live into the summer with heavier watering. Both are bunch grasses so they don't spread like Bermuda and St Augustine. You may need to reseed some areas to fill in holes.

We don't recommend over seeding warm season grasses though, as it slows down the growth of warm season grasses in the spring and doesn't die off fast enough when it warms causing fungal problems. Particularly don't do this with a St. Augustine lawn. Zoysia and Bermunda take over-seeding a little better. A thick winter grass may cut down on spring weeds being able to germinate.

Information on newer turf grass varieties from Texas A&M:
http://dallas.tamu.edu/news/2017/foxturfsegment/: Video on A&M’s new TamStar St Augustine grass.
http://dallas.tamu.edu/research/turf/
http://dallas.tamu.edu/media/1143/turfgrass-varieties-for-licensing.pdf
http://dallas.tamu.edu/media/1210/tamstar-one-pager.pdf : TamStar, A&M’s latest new “super” St Augustine grass release.

Whatever you do, don’t leave the soil bare. At least cover it with compost.

http://plantscience.psu.edu/research/centers/turf/extension/factsheets/cool-season
Optimum soil temperatures for seed germination of cool-season turfgrasses.

Species

Temperatures (°F)

Tall fescue

68 - 86

Perennial ryegrass

68 - 86

Annual ryegrass

68 - 86

Fertilize

If you don’t do anything else for your lawn, at least fertilize it. You need to fertilize this month if you have not done so in the last 3 or 4 months. Fall is one of the times you should not miss as it strengthens your lawn, trees and shrubs for the cold periods of winter. While we recommend a winter fertilizing due to our mostly warm winters, the fall fertilizing will still have effects through to the spring in starting your plants out strongly.

Green Sense All Purpose Lawn & Garden Fertilizer is a perfect choice. Typical lawn grasses are not native and need supplemental fertilizing to ensure they grow well enough to not leave thin spots or gaps. These open areas ate what “weeds” are looking for.

Composting and Mulching Beds:

Along with the increase rains comes another chance to have your yard aerated and top dressed with compost. Compacted soils like our black clay favor weeds and disease problems. I see strong recommendations for doing this every year, but doing it whenever you can is better than not doing it at all.

Fall is the time you check your mulch and replace it for areas where over wintering pest may reside, or just bringing it up to the recommended 3” height. Mulch helps temper temperature changes in the soil to allow your plants to acclimate. It also slows the drying of the soil.

Watering, Mowing, Trimming

Let your grass still grow longer as in the summer to help shade out fall weeds.
See
http://www.beorganic.com/additional_info/Mowing_and_Watering_the_Lawn.htm for more information.

Pests, Disease, & Weeds

Apply Corn Gluten Meal (CGM) pre-emergent now:

Similar to last year, the cooler, wet August can causes the early germination of cool season weeds. Neil Sperry says to apply pre-emergent products now through first week of September; http://neilsperry.com/2016/08/fall-pre-emergent-time-is-here/. This is based on the average time when the soil temperature is low enough for cool season annual weeds to start germinating. The article includes Corn Gluten Meal (CGM) even if he doesn’t mentions it as the article is not organically orientated. So CGM will not be as effective as it would be if August was hotter, but should still work as different weeds germinate at different temperatures. If your lawn is like mine and the grass is still booming due to all of the rain, the weeds may not be as bad. Letting the grass grow to its longer summer height can shade out weeds also.

Weeds:

If you still have many weeds in your yard, wait until the warm season grasses go dormant, usually after a hard freeze (you will see the grass is all brown), and apply a organic fatty acid (soap)-based herbicide. These “soaps” breaks down or dissolves the protective waxy covering on actively growing green plants and the underlining cell membranes causing the plants to “burn” or “melt”. They will not harm brown dormant warm season grasses. They are not as temperature dependent as vinegar so can be used in the winter. We sell “Monterey Herbicidal Soap” in the store and use “Scythe Herbicide” in spraying customer’s yards. No organic herbicide works as a systemic like Roundup, so they don’t kill the roots, just the top parts. The plants can come back. Organic herbicides work better on younger weeds than older, better on annual weeds than perennial weeds, and are still hazardous enough to require not breathing it or getting on you or in your eyes. Read the directions before applying.

These organic fatty acid-based herbicides may be more effective in March around here, after weeds start to germinate in February and before warm season grasses come out of winter dormancy in April-May. This will help the warm grasses to fill into the weedy areas easier when they start growing. A dense lawn is the best deterrent to weeds. The “weeds” job is to fill in these gaps in the lawn or in damaged soil to protect the soil and its life.

If you think you have disease or pest problems with your lawn, it is best to bring into the store, a clump of grass with dirt and roots from the boundary of brown and green grass for us to see if we can narrow down the problem. We have Serenade, corn meal, and peat moss for fungal problems. Insecticidal oils and diatomaceous earth for chinch bugs. Bt products for sod web worms and army worms.

Here's a very interesting non-organic web site for weeds with germination info: http://www.weedalert.com/.

Grubs:

It is cool enough to use nematodes to help control grub worms if you have a problem with them.
See: http://www.beorganic.com/additional_info/Chinch_Bugs_Chiggers_Grub_Worms.htm for more information.
Also see: http://www.beorganic.com/additional_info/Rohdes_Nematode_Application_Instructions.htm

If you think you have disease or pest problems with your lawn, it is best to bring into the store, a clump of grass with roots from the boundary of brown and green grass for us to see if we can narrow down the problem. We have Actinovate, Serenade, corn meal, and peat moss for fungal problems. Insecticidal oils and diatomaceous earth for chinch bugs. Bt products for sod web worms and army worms.

OTHER THINGS TO DO THIS MONTH

Days are becoming shorter. Consider all the things you couldn't do last winter because of the dark evenings. Plan now and get your chores done while it is comfortable and we are still in daylight saving time. If need be, we can always help you with the work.

Add mulch and/or compost to bare or thin ground. We have bagged and bulk compost and bagged mulch.

Keep the bird feeders and bird baths clean and full.

Have your landscape and garden soil tested to know how to prepare your gardens and lawns. Rohde's recommends
"Texas Plant & Soil Lab" at 5115 West Monte Cristo Road, Edinburg, Texas 78541-8852, 956-383-0739. They can give you organic recommendations.

Most of this calendar is designed for Dallas, Tx in USDA Hardiness Zone 8a, with a predominant soil type of blackland prairie clay.