Gardens with Paul Thomas
Dr. Paul Thomas has some good ideas about developing and
maintaining a Butterfly Garden. To bring butterflies to
your garden you'll also need to make the environment friendly
for Caterpillars. Caterpillars need forage plants because
they eat the leaves. Plants such as Parsley,
Carrots, Dill are Caterpillar favorites. Butterflies like
for food. Plants like Verbena Bonariensis, Joe Pye Weed,
Lantana are Butterfly favorites.
This is not only a helpful piece for those interested in
Garden but this segment and others in this show have some
photography of Caterpillars and Butterflies.
Butterfly Life Cycle
Cynthia Mazer from Callaway Gardens explains
a butterfly life cycle.
There are four distinct stages: egg stage, larval stage...Caterpillar,
pupa stage...Chrysalis and adult Butterfly.
Hummingbirds and Butterflies
Helen Phillips from Callaway Gardens shows us how to attract
Butterflies and Hummingbirds. Butterflies land to eat, Hummingbirds
hover. Some plants can attract both, you may need some different
plants in your garden to attract both.
Dr. Rick Introduces us to Amaranthus
about turning a sow's ear into a silk purse! This plant
is the flashy cousin of an old timey plant known as pigweed,
scientific name of Amarathus tricolor. Look what has happened
to a coarse, rather weedy old time flower. I'll bet if you've
gardened a while, you remember Love lies bleeding with the
red, drooping tassel-like clusters of flowers. That was
A. caudatus also known as Tassle Flower. The word Amarathus
comes from greek A meaning not and mairaino "to wither"
which refers to the long lasting character of the flowers.
The young leaves are pretty tasty resembling spinach (so
you may want to grow it for a summer spinach substitute).
new kid on the block is Amarathus tricolor with several
common names Joesph's Coat Amaranthus, Fountain Plant, Tampala
with leaves 2-6" long. Look at the blotched red and green
leaves. This is fireworks in your garden. Guaranteed to
make folks take a another look. It gets a couple feet tall
and the varieties tell you how spectacular this plant really
can be. Molten Fire, Flaming Fountain, and Illumination
are just a few fascinating varieties of this blast of color
rarely see this plant when temperatures are cool. It needs
soil temperatures of at least 70 to germinate and flourish.
So, don't put it out too early. It will just sit there or
maybe even suffer until things warm up. It really likes
full sun and dry conditions, its very very drought tolerant
and can have trouble if it stays too wet. problem It can
get up to 5' tall, it may need some staking.
a design standpoint, it is an eye-full. It's probably best
not to try to blend it in with a lot of other plants because
it's almost fluorescent. It can easily overwhelm an entire
garden, so use it with discretion. I'd try surrounding it
with some green foliage plants and leave it alone. It certainly
doesn't need any help to be noticed. Amarathus tricolor.
problem we have around here are flea beetles eating the
foliage. Flea beetles are shiny, oval blue-black, brown
or bronzy green beetles about 1/16 inch long. They're called
flea beetles because they jum when disturbed. Flea beetles
love hot dry conditions, so we start to see them this time
of year esp. if we are in a drought situation.
this damage. Flea beetles chew holes in the leaves sometimes
to the point that the leaves look torn and tattered or ultimate
are almost skeletilized. This means they eat everything
but the veins. Most plants can stand some damage. Also,
they are VECTORS of other disease Which means that their
chewing activities creates a perfect site for bacterias
and fungi to enter the plant.
they love hot dry conditions, try squirting the leaves with
a bit of water a couple of times a week. This drives 'em
crazy. Insecticidal soap works, as does carbaryl or Sevin.
If they are a constant problem, try tilling the ground between
plantings such as at the end of the summer or during the
winter will cut down the number of eggs, larvae and pupae
in the soil.
Plum Leaf Azaleas
Hank Bruno from Callaway Gardens
introduces us to the Plum Leaf Azalea. This rare plant has
vivid orange/red blooms that last into July or
August, possibly as late as October. They can survive in
direct sun but
the blooms will fade, they do best in the shade. They like
drained, organic soil. They will grow to 15-20 feet tall
native to the deep south can grow as far north as Boston.
Dr. Rick and Hay Bale Gardening
year I read about a fellow that was fed up with trying to
start a garden in the ground and decided to try to grow
this tomatoes and peppers in bales of hay. Naturally, I
was skeptical. How can you grow vegetables in hay. But it
was too intriguing to let it go. Well I had helped a friend
install a new lawn early last spring and I new he had some
bales of hay left over that he didn't need, and he offered
them to me. So, I set them on a spot that got quite a bit
of sun, threw a little 10-10-10 fertilizer on them and a
couple of shovels of compost from the pile, soaked them
down good and let it sit for a about a month. I dug out
a few holes and put a few pumpkin seeds in the holes and,
Viola! The pumpkins have done extremely well and I am waiting
to start seeing a few small pumpkins this time of year.
One of the best things about this approach is the lack of
weeds. I haven't had any and at the end of the growing season
this year I can take this hay and add it to the compost
pile, or just leave it here to nourish the soil. Also, the
hay holds quite a bit of moisture. We've had a very dry
summer and I've only watered it twice. Other than the small
amount of fertilizer I put on it early spring, I haven't
put a bit on it. The hay bales I got were pretty old. If
I try it again, I am going to get my bales in the fall and
let them sit all winter to compost a bit before I plant
in the spring.
So if you're looking for a way to create a low maintenance
vegetable garden, don't dig, try hay bales gardening. It
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