Bayou Garden

Bayou Garden

From WRKF

From selecting the right plants to proper watering techniques and dealing with pests, host Dan Gill delivers the information you need to garden successfully in Louisiana's unique climate.More from Bayou Garden »

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Protect your pants against freezes

Despite the relative mildness of Louisiana winters overall, severe freezes do occur, and they can be devastating to tropical plants. All it takes is one night of temperatures in the low 20s or teens to severely damage or kill your tropicals.

Gardening trends, an end-of-the-year look

As we reach the new year, I thought a look at current trends in landscaping would be interesting. Technology and the age of communication are definitely changing the way we live, work, and garden. Gardeners will, with more ease and frequency than ever before, exchange ideas and be exposed to new concepts about how and why we garden.

Don't forget to enjoy the gift of your garden

I often write columns on what needs to be done in the garden. I remember once meeting a gentleman who said his wife read my columns faithfully, then make a list of gardening tasks he could do. He made a suggestion for a column topic. He asked that I write a column about simply sitting back and enjoying the garden. And he had a point. We often spend so much time working in the garden, that we can forget to sit down and simply appreciate what we accomplish.

Freeze events and citrus

The possibility of freeze damage in winter should always be considered when growing citrus trees. A variety of factors determine how much freeze damage is done to a citrus tree when a freeze does occur. The best time to plant a citrus tree is in late February or March. This gives trees an entire growing season to establish before their first winter in the ground. This is a real advantage.

Manage your indoor pest problems

You may think that house plants are shielded from insect problems, but that's simply not the case. When they do occur, indoor pest infestations can be devastating if they're not dealt with promptly and effectively. Indoor outbreaks can spread rapidly because of the environment indoors. We often group our house plants close together indoors in well-lit areas. These pests also have no natural predators.

Cool weather means it's time to talk herbs

Culinary herbs can be used to make all our cooking more delicious and they're wonderful for the yard. Herbs can be loosely grouped into cool season annuals and warm season annuals. Annuals live for a single season then die. What we're planting now are cool season annuals, which grow through the winter, get harvested in spring, and then die in the summer.

Colder weather is immanent, but don't panic

Colder weather is coming this week. As always, whenever the first cold snap hits in this season, gardeners panic just a little bit. Remember that this will not be a hard freeze. Temperatures below 30 degrees are a hard freeze and cause a lot of damage to tender plants. However, these temperatures we're expecting aren't going to cause a great deal of damage, so relax a bit.

Help your tropical plants get used to the dark

Louisiana gardeners often use containers of tender tropical plants on decks, patios, porches, and in courtyards. They provide color and beauty through the summer season. These plants thrive in the outdoor conditions, but since they can't withstand freezing temperatures, we have to protect them over the winter. You may move them inside on freezing nights as needed, or you may choose to bring them inside for the entirety of the season.

Replace warm season colors with cool season colors

Flower beds in our landscapes can stay colorful and attractive here. We put up with a ridiculously long and hot summer season, but we're compensated for this with a relatively mild winter. Because our winters are so mild, we can plant colorful blooming bedding plants that will bloom from fall, through the winter, and into spring.

Plan your spring flowering bulbs now

These days we're used to the instant gratification of planting blooming bedding plants for immediate color in our landscapes. But if you want spring flowering bulbs to brighten your gardens this spring, this simply won't work. You must plant the bulbs that will bloom this spring some time this fall.

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