May Flowers!!! What to do this Month for your Garden

Here in the Pacific Northwest more specifically, here in the City of Grants Pass, OR May is the first month that really starts off our warm seasons!  The sunshine is BACK!!  This is the perfect time to check your irrigation systems.  This also the time to plant heat-loving flowers and crops.  It is also the time to clean up your Spring plants  so they can preserve the nutrients and be ready to repeat their glory next year.

Here are some tips for the beautiful month of MAY!

1.  Remove spent flowers from your Spring bloomers:

spent flowers of spring-time to prunestart deadheading – once the petals have gone brown snap them off.  This preserves the plants energy-

2.  Spring bulbs like tulips & daffodils

spring bulbs

cut the stem of flower stalk but don’t cut  the leaves.  The foilage needs to die back naturally- once they have dried up they will pull out easily.  This gives the bulbs back the nutrients for next spring!

3.  Check your watering system or irrigation system:

watering system

NOW is the time to make sure your watering system is in working order.  To test, run each system manually for a least five minutes to make sure there are no leaks or no repairs needed.

4.  Harvest the rhubarb:

cherry-red rhubarb

Now is the time to harvest your cherry-red rhubarb stems to make your sweet desserts with.  Rhubarb is at its most tender RIGHT NOW and since the plant often goes dormant in summer’s heat, this is the perfect time to pick it!  Do NOT CUT  the stems- this causes rot instead pull the stalk with a twisting motion.

5.  Clematis Vines:

clematis vines

Clematis vines have some of the most dramatic blooms of most plants in the Pacific NW.  This is the time to buy them at the nursery if you want the best selection available.  They are just starting to bloom!

6.  Get your heat-loving plants:

heat-loving plants

This is also the time of year to set out starts of heat-loving plants like tomatoes, squash, pumpkins, cucumbers, melons, eggplant, corn and beans.  Once the last frost date has past you should be safe to plant these frost-sensitive plants.

7.  Grafted Tomatoes!

grafted tomatoes

For a nice harvest try grafted tomatoes.  These tomato varieties are grafted onto a more vigorous root stock.  They have a better disease resistance, grow more quickly and bear a ton of fruit.  These are more expensive but they are the best solution for smaller gardens they give a lot for a small plant.

8.  The Beauties!

coleus plants

Now don’t forget to pickups a few plants just for looks!  Now is the time to plant frost-tender & heat-loving plants such as impatiens, petunias, million bells, coleus and more!

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