Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Glade Sun

August 28, 2013

Plateau Gardening: Select a good site now to transplant later

CROSSVILLE — “Plateau Gardening” readers may recall Mike, who gardens in the Crossville area, asked in a June article the most advantageous time to relocate a rhododendron shrub. Mid- to late-autumn (after leaves have dropped from deciduous trees and shrubs indicating plants have entered their dormant phase) up through February is the most beneficial period for transplanting woody-stemmed species in our state.

Each transplanted tree or shrub needs to re-establish its root system at the new location. That takes about two years. Until roots regenerate, the transplant cannot bring moisture in efficiently. Irrigation is required to compensate for lessened root capacity. Pot-grown nursery stock can be set out year round. However, where transplants are of the same species, size and basic pre-transplant health; specimens installed in late-autumn or during winter have an advantage over those that are spring-planted. Producing new shoot growth, leaves, flowers and seeds in springtime and summer leave little energy to fuel root mass development. Hot, dry summer days can seriously stress impaired roots with a heavy demand for water. Since the ground rarely freezes to any appreciable depth during a Tennessee winter, roots of an autumn transplant have a couple months to grow without competition from spring above-ground growth and to better prepare for summertime heat. 

While not the right time to transplant trees and shrubs, August is good time to do preparatory research. Learn the sunlight and moisture requirements for perennial plants you wish to add to your landscape. Allowing enough space for a plant’s mature size is important, too. Select the best available spot on your property to meet the needs of each species. Observing the negative effects of our unusually rainy spring and summer on plants in home landscapes should help raise gardener-awareness of the potential harm in iffy plant placements and lax maintenance practices.

Abundant and persistent rainfall can encourage an explosion of plant diseases and insect problems. Fungal problems develop both when a plant’s growing area is damp and cool (during springtime and autumn) and/or when it is damp and warm (in spring and summer). Fungal and bacterial plant diseases grow well, multiply and spread when plant surfaces are moist. Sometimes splashing rain spreads diseases from plant to plant. Sometimes winds carry disease spores. Insects can be disease vectors, too. Insect numbers stay high when plants are close-growing. Crowded plants create a humid environment as do frequent rain storms. Since treatments to stop the spread of fungal diseases must be reapplied to plant surfaces after each heavy rain, in a year like this, home gardeners may get discouraged thinking they’ll go broke buying commercial spray products to stop plant diseases and insect infestations.

Some gardening choices caused few problems in the past but have come back to haunt me in 2013. My mixed fescue lawn looks lush and green at first glance, but a closer look reveals lots of weeds. If only I had raced out to spray broadleaf weed killer on one of the two days three weeks ago when there was no rain forecast. White powdery mildew dusts the leaves of tall garden phlox in a bed to the left of our front porch. Modern phlox cultivars are resistant to this disease, but openly-pollinated hybrid phlox usually produce seedlings that are highly susceptible to powdery mildew. I should have cut off the seed heads last fall or spread a pre-emergent weed killer this year to keep those seeds from sprouting.

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Glade Sun
  • County residents urged to vote

    Cumberland County has around 39,000 registered voters, as well as a strong reputation for voter participation.  However, as of press time on Tuesday, only 4,300 residents had taken advantage of early voting for the Aug. 7 primary and general elections. Local officials are predicting less than 50 percent of registered voters will cast their vote in the 14 days of early voting, plus election day. Only 23 percent of registered county voters participated in the May elections.

    July 30, 2014

  • Board amends by-laws

    At the July meeting of the Fairfield Glade Community Club, the board of directors approved a vote to amend the club's bylaws regarding uncontested elections of board members, effectively declaring Bob Diller and Steven Smith new board members.

    July 30, 2014

  • Naiad Kuhlman.jpg Senior olympian on the run for good health

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    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Enjoying nature.jpg Get your mink coat on the road

    It is interesting what animals you see crossing the roads sometimes. When animals cross roads, you can get a look at them, that wouldn't be possible if they stayed inside the cover of trees or grass. Sometimes, it is just a fleeting glance and you aren't sure what you saw. When you go into the woods looking for animals, they usually hide or leave the area before you even know they are around. But, roads are wide open with no cover. Also, most mammals are nocturnal, so they are out when we aren't. Anytime that I am on a two-lane road at night, I am always watching intently for wildlife in the headlights.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Read the latest edition of "The Bulletin"

    The Crossville Chronicle-Glade Sun also publishes a newsletter called "The Bulletin" in which you'll find a schedule of Glade activities and events, a restaurant and dining guide, golf information, and even tour schedules. Click here for the latest PDF edition of "The Bulletin."

    April 21, 2010 1 Link

  • Patches of Life: The replacement years

    I need a new refrigerator. There are some other things on order too as we seem to be in the replacement year of our life. Everything from the light bulbs to the computer seemed to agree that this is the year of replacement.

    July 30, 2014

  • Abacus Column: Tennessee the third most corrupt state in the U.S.?

    According to a recent article in Time magazine, Tennessee is ranked third among U.S. States in political corruption. I am not sure how they measure such crime in order to make such a charge. Does some purveyor of statistics identify the number of elected officials proved guilty in a court of law; or merely charged with corruption?

    July 30, 2014

  • A Time 4 Paws celebrates pet adoption after 3 1/2 years

    Three and a half years ago, a local no-kill animal welfare organization known as A Time 4 Paws (AT4P) received an important email. A Nashville animal shelter volunteer asked if AT4P could take two severely abused English Pointer mixes. The email said they didn't want to take back two dogs they had placed in foster care for fear they would have to kill them.

    July 30, 2014

  • A Time 4 Paws collecting shoes to help Soles4Souls in fight against global poverty

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    July 30, 2014

  • FFG Treasure Hunt set for Sept. 5

    The 2014 Fairfield Glade Treasure Hunt is set for Friday, Sept. 5. This has always been a fun evening for those who enjoy puzzle solving, figuring out clues or just having a good time.

    July 30, 2014

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