Spring Gardening


  1. Plant dahlias, elephant ear, gladiolus and caladiums now.
  2. Prepare spots where you intend to sod by first killing all weeds present. Use glyphosate (Roundup) or glufosinate (Finale).
  3. Examine the backside of euonymous and holly leaves for the white crust that signifies scale insects. Thoroughly spray leaves with horticultural oil.
  4. It is safe to plant tomatoes, peppers and eggplant in your garden now that the soil is warm.
  5. Move houseplants outdoors gradually. Never place them in full sunshine; filtered shade is best.  Water houseplants more frequently with the onset of more hours of sunshine and new green leaves. Begin monthly feedings with houseplant fertilizer.
  6. Plant Easter lilies outdoors after removing their faded blooms.
  7. Mulch tomatoes immediately after planting to prevent early blight fungus from splashing from the soil onto the leaves.
  8. "Flowering Annuals for Georgia Gardens" is a free booklet available at your local Extension Service office. Call 1-800-ASKUGA-1 to get local office phone numbers.
  9. Plant the seeds of annual flowers such as marigold, cosmos, zinnia and celosia. Mix lots of soil conditioner in beds to help them be drought tolerant.
  10. Plant corn, bean and pea seeds now. Use a soaker hose to water vegetable rows - you'll prevent disease and weeds plus save water.
  11. Look for aphids clustered at the tips of fast-growing crape myrtle branches. Blast them off with a water hose and give a ground-dwelling spider a nice lunch.


  1. Treat for azalea lace bugs if you've had problems in the past. Insecticidal soap, horticultural oil and synthetic insecticide chemicals all work well, sprayed under the leaves.
  2. Look for tiny "toothpicks" on the trunk of your Japanese maple, Kwansan cherry and other small landscape trees. The Asian ambrosia beetle is spreading death-dealing fungus inside the trunk.
  3. Plant begonias, coleus, geraniums, petunias and vinca for summer-long color in your landscape.
  4. Apply Bacillus thuringiensis to cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower to ward off cabbage looper caterpillar damage as these plants mature.
  5. Dig, divide and transplant your crowded irises to a better location, if needed, after they bloom.
  6. Prune early-flowering azaleas now that they have finished blooming. Remove tall sprouts at their base, inside the shrub.
  7. Pinch out the growing tips of rhododendron limbs now that flowers are gone. You'll get many more flowers next year.
  8. Plant rosemary, basil, oregano, dill and other herbs for savory summer meals.
  9. Plant corn, squash, beans and peas now that the soil is quite warm. Make another planting of corn in two weeks.

From the Georgia Gardener, www.walterreeves.com