Plants and Items for SPRING!

FRESH NEW SPRING PLANTS, ITEMS and DISPLAYS are ready NOW at Hillermann Nursery & Florist!! Check out the photo gallery below for a peek of what is here, then come on down for spring planting, decorating and gifting items. Let’s GET SPRING STARTED!

Garden Solutions - March 2019

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            WOW what a winter we had this year! Spring is almost here!!! What a wonderful feeling to be able to spend more time outside enjoying what Mother Nature is unfolding before our eyes. The lengthening of days is a welcome site, and the warm sun on our faces is also a very great feeling. We “spring forward” with Daylight Savings Time on Sunday, March 10 this year. That is exciting.

            The grass will be greening up and mowing time is just around the corner. Mow lawns now to remove old growth and the last of winter’s leaves before new growth begins. Thin spots and bare patches in the lawn can be over seeded now if you don’t intend to use a crabgrass preventer on your lawn. Last summer’s heat and drought may make this a necessity this spring, if you missed the opportunity last fall.

            If you don’t over seed your lawn, now is the time to apply Fertilome Crabgrass Plus Lawn Food. We have long summer seasons here, and actually recommend that you make two applications of this product (4-6 weeks apart) to keep your yards crabgrass free this summer. 

            Begin spring cleanup of perennial beds this month. Cut perennials to 3” above the ground. Remove damaged foliage and old flower stalks. Ornamental grasses and hardy hibiscus can be pruned back to 6” above the ground now.

            Once flowerbeds have been cleaned up, re-mulching can be done. Be sure not to mulch on the crowns of plants. Top dress or dry feed beds with a granular fertilizer, such as Osmocote, and apply a pre-emergent to help keep weed seeds from germinating. Divide summer and fall blooming perennials now, along with ornamental grasses if you so desire.

            Plant/sow peas, lettuce, radish, kohlrabi, collards, turnips, potatoes, spinach, onion sets, beets, carrots, and parsley outside this month. Set out broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, Chinese cabbage, cauliflower and pansy transplants now. This month is also great for setting out strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, grapes and fruit trees.

            Start seeds indoors this month for tomatoes, peppers and eggplants. And houseplants can still be repotted. Continue to check houseplants for over wintering insect populations.

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            Nesting boxes for bluebirds can be set up as well as Purple Martin houses. Bluebird boxes are best at about 5’ off the ground on a fence post in the open with the entry hole facing away from prevailing winds. Purple Martins return to our zone 6 region between St. Pat’s Day and the end of the month. So, now is the time to clean out those houses and be prepared.

            It is time to go, “See you in the garden!!”
Sandi Hillermann McDonald

 

 

Weed Prevention… Now Is The Time

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Understanding exactly what you are applying and how it works will help you decide when to get out there and start your lawn care. First, it’s not a race. The first neighbor to unleash the spreader from the garage is not necessarily the winner, winner, chicken dinner.

When you start looking at bags you will see words like ‘preventer’, ‘crabgrass’, and ‘pre-emergent’.

WHAT DOES ALL THIS MEAN?

The majority of first lawn applications contain a fertilizer (to make the grass grow) and what is called a pre-emergent herbicide. A herbicide is a chemical that kills plants (in contrast to an insecticide). A pre-emergent herbicide is one that stops a plant from growing. Look at the word: pre (before) –emergent (sprouting).

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HOW CAN AN HERBICIDE KILL A PLANT BEFORE IT IS EVEN GROWING?

A pre-emergent kills the emerging seed of a plant either before or right after it sprouts. So, the weed killer in the first bag you put down is actually a weed PREVENTER. Weed preventers create a barrier where they are applied that blocks growth. But wait, you say. I have put this pre-emergent down before and I still had weeds in the summer. What gives? A pre-emergent will only stop weeds if they are sprouting from a seed. If the weed is sprouting from a root that stayed in the ground over the winter, a pre-emergent will not prevent it. This is common with weeds like dandelions, clover, and ground ivy. Weeds returning from established roots need a different weed killer.  The #1 big battle of this category is crabgrass.

BUT HERE’S THE THING:

Crabgrass doesn’t germinate until it’s warm. And I don’t mean the AIR temperature. Crabgrass germinates when the SOIL temperatures hit the mid 50s. And soil takes a lot longer to warm up in the spring than the air. Think of how long it takes a lake to warm up in the spring and summer. It may be a gorgeous day on the boat but if you jump in that water, you are in for a shock. Soil temperature is similar. It warms up very slowly in the spring. Crabgrass may germinate in late March in our area. Crabgrass preventers can last up to 4 months. We recommend another addition of prevention in late May to get us covered through our hot dry summers.

There are several factors that influence the germination time of warm-season weeds like crabgrass. Every year is different, and every lawn is different. Did you know that we also offer pre-emergent service in our Hillermann lawn program??  So therefore, WE CAN DO IT FOR YOU. 

Stop in or call to let us help you with your specific needs. 

Sandi Hilllermann McDonald

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Bird of the Week - 2/27/19

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Purple Martins

 Graceful in flight, musical in its pre-dawn singing, this big swallow is one of our most popular birds. Martin housing has a long history: some Native American tribes reportedly hung up hollow gourds around their villages to attract these birds. Purple Martins migrate to South America for the winter, but before leaving, they may gather to roost in groups of thousands in late summer.

 Characteristics: Purple Martins are large, broad-chested swallows. They have stout, slightly hooked bills, short, forked tails, and long, tapered wings. Adult males are iridescent, dark blue-purple overall with brown-black wings and tail. Females and immature Martins are duller, with variable amounts of gray on the head and chest and a whitish lower belly. Purple Martins fly rapidly with a mix of flapping and gliding. They feed and roost in flocks, often mixed with other species of swallows. They often feed higher in the air than other swallows, which can make them tough to spot.

 Songs and Calls: Liquid gurgling warble. Also a penetrating tee-tee-tee.

 Diet: Insects. Feeds on a wide variety of flying insects, including many wasps and winged ants, and some bees; also many true bugs, mosquitoes, flies, (including house flies and crane flies), beetles, moths, butterflies and dragonflies. They also eat some spiders.

 Nesting: Males return to nesting areas first in spring to establish nesting territories. Natural sites are in cavities, such as old woodpecker holes, in trees. They usually nests in colonies, especially in east, where almost all nest in multiple-roomed nest boxes put up for them. At least 4 housing cavities should be offered and 6 to 12 is a great start to attract a colony. Aluminum, thick plastic, wood, and natural gourds are all suitable materials for martin housing, provided that the exterior of the house is white in color to reflects heat, keeping housing cooler in hot temperatures. Martins prefer housing that is placed in open areas with clear flyways. Choose the center of the largest open spot available, at least 40-60 feet from trees and within 100 yards of human housing. In the southern half of their breeding range, martins may accept housing that is placed within 25 feet of trees, but open areas are always best. Housing should be lowered, sometimes on a daily basis, to remove competitor nests and to monitor the nests. Therefore, it’s helpful if the housing is on a pole that has a telescoping, pulley, or winch system to raise and lower the unit. Recommended height is 12-18’.

 Note: Purple Martin numbers have declined seriously in parts of the west, and currently declining in the east. Reasons are not well known, but competition with other bird species for nest sites may be involved.

  

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20% OFF
Purple Martin Houses & Accessories

 

Good through 3/5/19. Not good with any other sale, coupon or discount or
on previous purchases. Print this page or mention offer at the checkout counter.

Code: 004

 

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Houseplant of the Week - 2/27/19

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ZZ Plant

The ZZ plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia) gets its common name from its botanical name. Since Zamioculcas zamiifolia was long and difficult to say, many nursery workers simply shortened it to ZZ. The plant stems grow in a graceful, wand-like shape that starts thick and bulbous at the base and then tapers to a point. Along the stem are fleshy, oval-shaped leaves that make the plant look like stylized feathers. The entire plant has a waxy, shiny coating that makes it appear to resemble those made of plastic. Between the sculptural qualities of the plant and its waxy coating, it is not uncommon for people to insist that it must be an artificial plant. Small, insignificant flowers consisting of a spadix surrounded by a spathe may appear at the base of plants in summer, although ZZ plants rarely flower indoors.

What makes ZZ plant such a good houseplant is that it's wonderfully tolerant to a wide range of conditions, including low light, low humidity, and periods of drought. It's truly one of the toughest houseplants around, making it a perfect choice to add to your home or office. In addition, it has air purifying qualities for the indoor environment.

The ZZ plant will do best in bright to moderate, indirect light. While it can take direct light, you may see some scalding on the leaves if it is left in direct light. Additionally, curling leaves, yellowing and leaning can all be an indication of too much light. If you notice curling taking place, it typically means the plant is trying to move away from the light source. Move the plant to a shadier location or farther away from the light source. You can also try filtering the light with curtains or blinds if moving the plant is not feasible. The ZZ plant will also do fine in extremely low levels of light. This makes it an ideal plant for a window-less office or bathroom where it will only receive small amounts of fluorescent light.

Water the plant once every one to two weeks - as the top inch or two of the potting mix dries. If the soil is wet or damp wait a little longer before watering. The plant has underground rhizomes that can rot if the soil stays too wet. As a survival technique, ZZ plant has evolved to start dropping its leaflets to conserve moisture during periods of severe drought. If you forget to water yours and see the leaflets fall, don't give up hope. Water your plant again and it should resuscitate.

ZZ plants are happy without fertilizer, but if you would like, you can give the plants half strength fertilizer one to two times a year and only in the summer months.

Pruning may be beneficial as the plant grows. Cut away leaflets that are turning yellow near the base of a stem. Once a stem has grown much longer than all other stems you can remove that stem or cut it to size at the tip. It can sometimes look a little odd when a stem is cut off to size, so removing it completely might be another option - depending on individual preference.

 

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20% OFF
ZZ Plants

Good through 3/5/19. Not good with any other sale, coupon or discount or
on previous purchases. Print this page or mention offer at the checkout counter.

Code: 004 

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Houseplant of the Week - 2/19/19

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Mini Garden Plants

       Mini plants and mini gardens have become very popular. They have a cuteness factor that is hard to resist. Miniature plants can be used in a variety of ways. They work great in cute little containers, terrariums, and of course in miniature/fairy gardens.

       The joy of miniature gardening is combining crafting and gardening together to create a living masterpiece. There are so many options for creating mini gardens from fairy gardens to miniature landscape scenes. You can create a mini world containing plants and mini decor that reminds you of a favorite place or a place you'd like to be, or you can create a whimsical fantasy scene.

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       The crafting part is attaining an idea, and then putting it into a mini garden. The gardening part is choosing the plants that suit your idea and will grow well together in the location you have available. The same golden rule applies here as in landscape areas - choose the right plant for the right place. The associates at Hillermann Nursery & Florist are here to help you with design, selection and care tips.

 

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20% OFF
Mini Garden Plants

Good through 2/26/19. Not good with any other sale, coupon or discount or
on previous purchases. Print this page or mention offer at the checkout counter.

Code: 004

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Bird of the Week – 2/19/19

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White-Breasted Nuthatch

Basics: The nuthatch is often described as the upside-down bird! This species often climbs upside down on tree trunks and branches. These birds have clean black, gray, and white markings. Song is a rapid series of low-pitched nasal sounds: “whe-whe-whe-whe-whe.” The call is nasal yank or “yank-yank” and is lower-pitched than the red-breasted nuthatch. They can be found in mature deciduous trees, in forests, woodlands, parks, and suburban areas.

Housing: These birds typically nest in a natural tree cavity or in an old woodpecker hole, although they may use a birdhouse. Leaving some dead tree trunks in wooded areas can be helpful for nesting.

Food: In our backyards, Nuthatches will eat sunflower seeds, peanuts and peanut butter, and suet.

How to attract: Offer the foods mentioned above, water, shelter and nesting sites.

Fact: With a little patience, you can get nuthatches to eat from your hand.  Let them get used to you by a feeder, then hold out your hand with sunflower seeds in it.

Note: They can be quite aggressive at feeders. With wings spread, they will swing from side to side to keep other birds away.

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20% OFF
Bird Watering Wells 

Good through 2/26/19. Not good with any other sale, coupon or discount or
on previous purchases. Print this page or mention offer at the checkout counter.

Code: 004

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Bird of the Week - 2/13/19

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Black-Capped and Carolina Chickadee

Basics: These two birds are extremely similar in looks, but across most of eastern North America, chickadee identification is simple. Carolina Chickadee occurs in the south and Black-capped in the north. The black capped tends to have a brighter and more contrasting overall appearance. The Black-capped Chickadee is the chickadee you will most likely see here.

Housing: Consider putting up a nest box to attract a breeding pair. A wren house will work for chickadees. Place the house from 8 to 10 feet high into a wooded area well before breeding season. Attach a guard to keep predators from raiding eggs and young. Black-capped Chickadees are especially attracted to a box when it is filled with sawdust or wood shavings. They also prefer an unobstructed path to the entrance hole, without branches and leaves in the way.

Food: Offer suet, peanuts, peanut butter, black oil sunflower seeds and bread product kitchen scraps.

How to Attract: Provide food, water, and shelter. Keep cats and other pets indoors. Provide suitable perches near feeders so Chickadees can flit away to a safe spot to eat each seed.

Facts: Individual birds CAN become tame enough to hand feed. Black capped Chickadees are monogamous birds.

Tip:  Plant trees and shrubs of different sizes in mixed clumps to provide better foraging areas.

 

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20% OFF
Window Bird Feeders
 

Good through 2/19/19.
Not good with any other sale, coupon or discount or on previous purchases.
Mention offer at the checkout counter.

Code: 004 

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Houseplant of the Week - 2/13/19

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Philodendron

             For generations, philodendrons have served as a mainstay in interior gardens. Philodendron care is easy because if you watch for the signals, the plant will tell you exactly what it needs. This makes it easy to learn how to care for the plant. They will thrive indoors year round, but they enjoy an occasional stay outdoors in a shady spot in summer months.

            Sunlight – Set the plant in a location with bright, indirect sunlight near a window where the sun’s rays never actually touch the foliage. While it’s normal for older leaves to yellow, if this happens to several leaves at the same time, the plant may be getting too much light. On the other hand, if the stems are long and leggy with several inches between leaves, the plant probably isn’t getting enough light.

            Water – When growing philodendron plants, allow the top inch of soil to dry out between waterings. Check the soil by inserting your finger an inch into the soil. If the soil is moist, wait a little longer to water the plant. Droopy leaves can mean that the plant is getting too much or not enough water. However, they recover quickly when you correct the watering schedule.

            Fertilizer – Water the plant with a balanced liquid foliage houseplant fertilizer monthly in spring and summer and every six to eight weeks in fall and winter. Slow growth and small leaf size is the plant’s way of telling you that it isn’t getting enough fertilizer. Pale new leaves usually indicate that the plant isn’t getting enough calcium and magnesium, which are essential micro-nutrients for philodendrons.

 

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20% OFF
Philodendron Plants

Good through 2/19/19. Not good with any other sale, coupon or discount or on previous purchases.
Print this page or mention this offer at the checkout counter.

Code: 004

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Garden Solutions - January 2019

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            February continues with dreary weather, but the anticipation of spring is closer every day.  Our daylight hours are getting a little longer, which holds the promise that spring will be here soon.  There are a few things to remind ourselves of, in preparation for this fabulous time of year.

            Seed sowing time is upon us!  Now is the time of year to start seeds indoors for slow growing annuals such as Ageratum, Petunias, Geraniums, Impatiens, Salvia and Coleus. Check out the great selections of seed varieties available. We may now also move into our gardens outside, if the weather permits, to start the seeds of Peas, Lettuce, Spinach and Radish. What a great feeling to work in the fresh air again!

            Keep an eye out for Chickweed and Henbit in your lawn.  These two early weeds have already emerged and will be thick this year.  Spot treat these areas with Fertilome Weed-Out weed killer to keep it from going to seed.

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            Amaryllis and Paperwhite bulbs can still be forced indoors this winter.  Make sure you keep the top 1/3 of the bulb out of the container, place into a sunny window, water and enjoy.  Houseplants will be coming out of their winter dormancy soon, so now is the time to consider repotting and trimming root bound plants.  This works best before vigorous growth occurs.  When transplanting, choose a container that is about 2” larger in diameter than the old pot your plant is in today.  This will make for an easier transition period for your plants.  Add a slow release fertilizer, such as Osmocote, at this time. We have a great selection of new and fun plant varieties.

            Service and repair your lawn and garden equipment if you haven’t already done so.  Sharpen and oil your hand tools, if this wasn’t done last December when you put your gardens to rest.  A bucket of sand and a quart of motor oil work great for cleaning and oiling our tools.  Pour the motor oil into the sand and insert your tool blades. This will help keep them clean and keep them from rusting.  Have your lawn mower tuned up and the blades sharpened this month also.

            Deep root feed all trees and shrubs once the soil thaws.  This gets the plants off to a great start for spring.  The fertilizer has a chance to flow up with the sap and directly to the new growth giving way for great green foliage and flowers.

            Dormant spray all fruits, berry plants and roses with a dormant oil spray when the temperature is above 40*.  This will help protect the plants from any over wintering fungus spores and insect eggs.

            It is time to go, so we will “See you in the garden!”
Sandi Hillermann McDonald