Stillwater News Press

Local Columnists

July 13, 2014

In the Garden 07-13-14

Will plants cook this summer?

“Where’s the relief?” That is what I’ve been thinking all week in the garden. I water, wondering if the mist is going to cool or cook the plants. I assumed the last thing anyone would consider this week is planting — anything! Yet, I, myself, transplanted some leggy zinnia, a bronze sedge from the clearance rack and a rogue young fruit tree. (With mindful watering, it can be successful.)

The most common dilemma in July is finding some color to fill in where the early petunias or impatiens are petering out. It’s pretty early to find mums on sale and much of what is on the nurseries’ shelves is yesterday’s leftovers. Here are a few ideas to carry your plantings over into fall.

Bursts of color don’t have to come from flowers. Bright foliage catches the eye often requiring less care. Coleus, Perilla, Dusty Miller and Irisene are easy to grow and fill in the voids with variegated yellows and lime greens, gray or hot pink. Pinch the tops back to keep the plants from becoming leggy. This will also help draw the primary components of the planting back together.

Tropicals are another way to color the bare spots. Annual hibiscuses blend well in mixed planters. The bold, trumpet-shaped red and orange flowers rise above the pot’s fillers and spillers to create a striking display.

Red Riding Hood Mandevilla is another free-flowering tropical for large containers. It is diminutive in every way from its well-known cousin M. ‘Alice Dupont’ but has become the standard of its genus. The dark, glossy leaves and deep rose flowers are each only two to three inches long.

Use this plant climbing a small trellis or allow it to twine between the other plants and drape over the container’s edge.

Sometimes the smaller flowered accents like alyssum and lobelia are the first to succumb to the brutal heat summers bring. Take this opportunity to sprinkle a few seeds in the top of the soil.

My ‘Profusion’ zinnia has dropped the seed of its first flowers and, two-inch seedlings are taking off near their mother. Marigolds and Celosia are also easy to sprout and begin flowering within weeks of germination. Seed planted now will bloom throughout September and October.

Whatever you do, if you plant in this heat, transplant or seed in the evening as it begins to cool down and be on hand to offer a little relief the first couple of days. A simple umbrella or midday shower will help your new additions adapt to their surroundings.

LeeAnn Barton has worked with nurseries for more than 20 years. She digs in the dirt in Stillwater. Direct questions to her by emailing leeannbarton@sbcglobal.net.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local Columnists
  • Concerning Kids 07-26-14

    Just last week, I was at a family gathering and one of my cousins found out that I’m a teen librarian.  
    “My son is 11 but he reads at an 11th grade level,” my cousin said. “He loves to read but it’s so hard to find books that are challenging for him and have age appropriate content. What do I do?”

    July 25, 2014

  • Farmers Market

    The Stillwater Farmers Market is open every Monday at Stillwater Medical Center from 2-5:30 p.m. and every Wednesday and Saturday in Strickland Park at the corner of Hall of Fame Avenue and Main Street from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    What’s at market this week?

    July 23, 2014

  • The Library Shelf 07-22-14

    Payne County gardeners soon will be reaping the benefits of the hard work put into their vegetable gardens all summer long.  
    To help community members maximize their summer harvest, Stillwater Public Library is presenting “Yes We Can,” an introductory class on preserving food at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 7.

    July 22, 2014

  • 1 - PCLC Class 4 Renovation.jpg AND, STILL THE WATERS RUN: The walls come tumbling down

    July 21, 2014 7 Photos

  • LARRY JONES: Remembering a front door in Japan

    July 20, 2014

  • Life at Boomer Lake 07-20-14

    A couple of unusual items made it on the list of notoriety this week, but we’ll hold off on that for the time being.
    Baby birds are still infiltrating the area and are growing quickly.

    July 19, 2014

  • Live Well 07-20-14

    It is way too easy to hit snooze on my alarm clock.
    Exercising in the morning always seems like a good idea until the alarm starts yelling at an ungodly hour.

    July 19, 2014

  • Grow! 07-20-14

    Roses are a beautiful addition to any garden and landscape. They come in a variety of colors that enhance your yard. However, like other plants, roses are susceptible to disease. One that seems to hit roses the hardest is rose rosette disease caused by the rose rosette virus.

    July 19, 2014

  • Seed to Table 07-20-14

    Weed control is an important part of food production. So, I recently undertook an effort to rid my pastures of a particularly noxious weed.

    July 19, 2014

  • Down Home 07-20-14

    No wonder everyone is so smitten with just her voice. She’s smart and precise and I’ve also recently discovered I can’t live without her. Her name is Siri.

    July 19, 2014

Buy & Share Photos
NewsPress e-Edition
NewsPress Specials
AP Video
Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites
Stocks
NDN Video
Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot
Must Read