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Gardening tips for a beautiful yard, plentiful harvest

McHenry County Magazine

Spring is finally here, which means it’s time to head outdoors to reclaim your yard and garden from the ravages of winter and prepare for beautiful blooms and a fruitful yield this summer. Countryside Flower Shop, Nursery & Garden Center, in Crystal Lake, offers some great gardening tips that can help you tackle the job:

1. Always clean debris, leaves and dead plants from around your plantings after the danger of frost has passed, typically, when daytime temperatures consistently stay above 50 degrees.

2. Plant cold season vegetables now. You can generally plant tomatoes beginning in mid-May. Wait until the soil warms up to plant cucumbers, squash and melons. Memorial Day is typically a good time.

3. If you have crabapple trees, spray with Infuse to prevent apple scab once the petals have fallen off.

4.Trim forsythia and lilac bushes right after they have finished flowering, usually within a week. Trim them any later and they won’t bloom next year.

5. If you have container gardens, use a time-release fertilizer to feed them continuously all summer long.

6. When putting in new plantings — vegetables, flowers, trees and shrubs — always use Plant Starter to promote root growth.

7. Once you’ve cleaned up your flower beds and put in new plantings, add mulch to retain moisture.

8. When you’ve finished adding mulch, sprinkle Preen to prevent weeds from germinating.

9. After all your hard work, keep critters out of your vegetable garden. Start applying granular repellents now, but switch repellents every other application so they don’t get used to one.

Countryside Flower Shop, Nursery & Garden Center : 5301 E. Terra Cotta Ave (Rte 176), Crystal Lake, IL : 815.459.8130 : www.countrysideflowershop.com

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