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Milberger's Nursery and Landscaping
3920 North Loop 1604 E.
San Antonio, TX 78247

Open 9 to 6 Mon. through Sat.
and 10 to 5 on Sun.

Three exits east of 281, inside of 1604
Next to the Diamond Shamrock station
Please click map for more detailed map and driving directions.

Click here

Primetime-News Article
By Calvin R. Finch, PhD, SAWS Water Resources Director, and Horticulturist
Week of July 30, 2007

“August Gardening”

July was very cool in 2007 we can only hope August will be just as cool with, perhaps, less rain.

Tomatoes for the autumn need to be planted in August if you hope to have fruit before cold weather arrives. A few Surefire tomatoes are on the market again this year. They are my favorite fall tomato because they produce fruit in 70 days. Other varieties to consider are Solar Fire, Sun Master, Amelia, 444, and Celebrity. If it does get hot, spider mites have the potential to ruin your plants. A weekly spray of neem oil may slow them down. Spinosad is also labeled for the pests. Both of these organic controls work better as a preventative than for sprays to eliminate an infestation. If you carried the spring tomatoes over they would also benefit with the preventative spray. Tomatoes also need to be well fertilized if they are going to produce a large crop of fruit. One half cup of slow release lawn fertilizer like 19-5-9 every four weeks will do the job.

Most years I do not recommend any mid summer lawn fertilization. With the rain and heavy growth in June and July nitrogen is likely to be in short supply. An application of Iron Plus granules or 19-5-9 slow release lawn fertilizer will benefit most lawns. The toughest lawn task this summer has been mowing. It is best for your lawn if it is mowed whenever it reaches a height that is one third taller than its mowing height. If you mow your zoysia to two inches tall it should be mowed at or before it reaches three inches. St. Augustine that is mowed to three inches should be mowed before it reaches 4.3 inches and so forth. The one third rule causes less stress to the grass plants, reduces shading from clippings and results in quick decomposition of the clippings.

Slugs, snails and pill bugs are everywhere. Control them with Slug & Snail Bait. Sprinkle the bait around the edge of flower and vegetable gardens. If Bermuda grass or St. Augustine are invading your gardens, apply a contact herbicide that is selective for grasses. There are lots of brands to choose from including Over the Top, Vantage, Grass- be-Gone and Fusilade. Spray the offending grass and within about two weeks it will die without hurting any other plants. If you are skillful with your sprayer you can kill the grasses in straight lines on the garden edges.

If you can find some American or African marigolds consider planting them close together for a mum-like display of gold or yellow. They are better than garden mums because they bloom longer and do not need the garden space year around. The planting works best if the marigolds are planted before bloom begins so they can gain some size before they bloom. A bed planted on 18 inch centers will even help reduce nematodes in the garden.

Late in the month, plant wildflower seeds. Remember the wildflowers need full sun and they need to reach the soil. Vacant lots with poor soils and sparse weed cover work well, sodded areas do not. Cosmos seed spread this month in full sun will quickly make a show of blooms. Sunflowers also like the hot weather.

If you do not have a hummingbird feeder under the eaves or hanging from the arbor, put one up as soon as possible. Hummingbird action will be heavy from now until early December. Supplement the sugar water (four parts water, one part sugar) with a firebush and penta in containers on the patio.