Get your green patch in order now!

Get your green patch in order now!

Garden: With the onset of monsoon, it is the right time to add colour to your house much to the envy of neighbours, writes Gayathri V Raj

They need not worry about growing new plants which need only a little amount of water and chose plants that might occupy an attractive and proud part of your house, adding green patch much to the envy of the neighbours. Moreover, your plants won’t need anxious watering, protection from hot winds and blazing sunlight. And what with rain water laced with essential nutrients, your plants are in for a long treat. Now that the rains are finally here, we have many more options for our garden.

The experts say that this is the best time to plant a flowering shrub or tree. Fruit bearing trees can also be planted during monsoon season with ease. As the ground is soft and moist, the new plant gets a chance to settle in, without having to face the heat of summer or the onslaught of too much rain and water-logging in the soil.

There are a number of plants that can be added to your garden this month. As May is supposed to be a dry month, you have to make sure that the plants are supplemented with sufficient water during the season.

Apart from ornamental and flowering plants one can even chose a few vegetables like Okra, peas, tomatoes, eggplant and chillies that can be planted. Herbs like basil, ginger, lemon, mint, coriander and others also do well during the season.

Here's a list of chores that may need to be done in your garden to keep it in top shape. Add fertilisers to citrus trees that are three years and more. Palms may develop some deficiencies during the season and it is necessary to correct them.

Those interested in planting cuttings this season is the right time. Take four to six inch cuttings of tip growth. Dip cut ends in rooting hormone and stick cuttings in a sterile soil mix.  Water and cover soil and cuttings with a clear plastic bag. Place in strong, indirect light. You would be thrilled to see the pale green sprout.

Inspect lawns for insect pests. Some homeowners are mistaking insect damage for drought damage. Mix one portion of fluid ounce of dishwashing liquid in a 2-gallon sprinkling can of water and drench four-square-feet of lawn with this solution. Observe for two minutes. Pests will emerge to the grass surface and can be detected. If you have pests, treat accordingly.

Light pruning may be necessary to shape plants and encourage branching. Spray roses to control black spot disease. Symptoms of this disease are dark, round spots with yellow halos. Use a fungicide labeled for treatment of black spot on roses following directions carefully.

Transplant palm trees. Palm roots grow when the soil is moist and warm so palm establishment is  most successful during summer. Never allow soil to dry out during the first several months. Mow grass frequently. Mow often enough so that no more than one-third of the blade height is removed per mowing. Leave clippings on the lawn to recycle nutrients or use collected clippings as mulch or compost material.

Concentrate on the above areas of your garden to keep it in shape. Also, continue to keep the weeds under control.

Monsoon is one of the best time to grow new plants in your garden. With the higher humidity, cloud cover and rainfall, plants have an easier time getting established after planting.

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