Grow Massachusetts!

This week in your Massachusetts garden & landscape

Week of December 30, 2019

May the New Year be filled with peace and the love of family and friends, Happy New Year!

  • As you begin planning the vegetable garden this year, choose crops that you not only enjoy eating but also consider their requirements in terms of care.  A single packet of seeds will inundate you with vegetables.  Proper planning is important.
  • A beautiful, single-petal, yellow shrub rose introduced in 2018 by David Austin is Tottering-By-Gently (Auscartoon).  Offering good disease resistance with a light fragrance, Tottering-By-Gently can reach 4’ high and wide and is hardy in zones 5-11.
  • A wonderful, deer-resistant annual for a sunny spot in the garden is ‘Laguna White’ lobelia (Lobelia erinus ‘Laguna White’).  A low-maintenance choice with white flowers throughout the growing season, Laguna White will grow 8”-12” tall and spread up to 2’ wide.
  • If a cyclamen is among the decorations in your home this holiday season, keep them in bright, yet indirect, light in a cool room (ideally 65 degrees).  Water from the bottom and fertilize every two weeks.
  • Keeping a pot of water containing a cinnamon stick and cloves over low heat on the stove will put fragrant moisture in the air to help both plants and humans breathe.  Be sure to keep an eye out for evaporation and turn the stove off as needed.
  • ‘Profusion’ Beautyberry (Callicarpa) is a show-stopper in the winter landscape.  A deciduous shrub with small, purple-pink flowers in the summer give way to abundant, long-lasting clusters of violet-colored berries that cover the branches in the fall.   Thriving in full sun, Profusion Beautyberry is hardy in zones 5-8.
  • If a pear tree is on your list of additions to the garden this year, you will discover that pear trees are available in either standard or dwarf trees.  Standard trees produce much more fruit than dwarf trees, however, dwarf trees begin to bear fruit sooner, are easier to care for and require less room.  Some dwarf pear trees are not as hardy in cold climates so be sure to check hardiness before purchasing.

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