357e8b3c264527c1a3c11b685e79e622

Putting Greens

My husband loves to golf. He takes delight in maintaining brilliant swaths of putting greens around our home.

I detest grass. I liken it to a miniature forest of running bamboo that requires constant attention. Fescue and perennial rye seek to overtake my beds and borders while I’m not watching. Although my secret goal is to eradicate the small pools of kelly green with choice specimens, they still exist for my husband’s putting practice.

A Change of Heart 

My husband adores lawn chemicals to keep the grass ‘putting grass green’ yearlong. After enrolling into Oregon State University’s Master Gardener program, I replaced all synthetic fertilizers and pest control methods with organics and hand weeding practices. What I prefer about organics is I can place them in my hands. They smell good. My health along with neighborhood pets and children are not negatively affected.

hands.jpg

Hand Weeding

Most fall lawn synthetics are packaged as “Weed and Feed” products. A great clue if your lawn is lacking calcium, you will generally have a bumper crop of dandelions (Taraxacum officinale). To organically eradicate dandelions, I place eggs shells around them. The leaves turn black and shrivel. Otherwise, I hand weed using Fiskars UpRoot® Weed & Root Remover – it is a wondrous tool and back saver. Hand weeding definitely takes more time, but can be very relaxing and puts you more in touch with nature and your surroundings.

fiskar_uproot_tool.jpg

What is NPK?

NPK stands for the ratio of Nitrogen (N) / Phosphorus (P) / Potasium (K) provided in a fertilizer. Reading fertilizers at the local garden store is akin to reviewing supermarket food labels.  The trick is to remember low numbers are generally organic and high numbers can indicate synthetics.

product_shot.jpg

For example: alfalfa meal has an NPK ratio of 2 / 0.5 / 2. A synthetic fertilizer may have an NPK ratio of 16 / 10 / 16. Organics provide food to plants much slower than synthetics because they break down slower in the soil. Synthetic usage is similar to putting plants on steroids, but they do have their place. They are great for summer annuals - but not perennials, trees or shrubs.

Lawn Booster Recipe

Pacific Northwest lawns in Sunset Zone 6 thrive using this organic lawn care recipe.

Description
Provides
 NPK Ratios
Reasons
1 carton of Epsom Salts
(located in supermarket or drug store)
Magnesium  N/A Clay soils lack trace minerals. Promotes strong, healthy root systems.
1 box Alfalfa Meal Nitrogen 2 / 0.5 / 2 Growth vigor and color intensity.
1 box Bloodmeal Nitrogen 13 / 0 / 0 Healthy blade growth, green color and vigor.
1 box Bone Meal Calcium, Phosphorus 3 / 15 / 0 Dandelion weed reduction. Promotes root growth.
1 box Dolomite Lime pH Adjuster, Calcium, Magnesium N/A PNW soils are more acidic due to the rainfall. Lime neutralizes the soil.
1 box Garden Gypsum Clay busterCalcium, Sulfur N/A  Assists in breaking up clay soils.
1 bag Pacific NW Grass Seed Mix Overseeding N/A Overseed once in October and March.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Application Tips

Fall is fast approaching. Days without precipitation are dwindling quickly. I watch the weather report anxiously for a dry afternoon followed by a rainy day for optimal application timing. I’m not one for measuring, so an entire box of each ingredient is liberally mixed into Scotts® Speedy Green 3000 spreader. The mixture can be dusty. If needed, wear a mask when assembling in the spreader. Apply on a calm, non-windy day.

spreader_setting.jpg

The spreader setting is placed on eight (8) - which covers approximately 1,000 square feet. Due to the nitrogen application, the grass will color up nicely in about three to four weeks followed by fresh, new growth.

Your challenge will not be the envious neighbors, but rather convincing your significant other to move the lawn mower height adjustment to a higher level. A lawnmower attached to my overzealous husband hands has spoiled fantastic results by mower blade settings too low. Shearing too close to the ground results in a very brown landscape quickly. Consequently, the grass will need mowed more often at a higher setting.
scotts_speedy_green_spreader.jpg
Apply lawn booster recipe once in early fall and mid-Spring for optimal results. By promoting healthy root systems, weed reduction and relying less on synthetics - we enjoy a healthier ecosystem in our own backyard. And my husband’s putting greens never looked better as can yours.

BeeDazzled Gardens & Designs
Specializes in creating fragrant, organic, low maintenance garden vignettes that add value and pleasure to a home or business exterior and landscape. Our specialty is staged, perennial bed planting designs, seasonal potted containers and garden renovations.


Photo credit on all photos: Dawn Hummel


Plant Care Reminders

Blackberry Monthly Plant Care
Edibles Julie Bawden-Davis

Blackberry - Thornless (Rubus canadensis) - Monthly Plant Care Calendar

You can have these monthly Plant Care Reminders sent directly to you each month!
Tomato Monthly Plant Care
Edibles Lucy Warren

Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) - Monthly Plant Care Calendar

You can have these monthly Plant Care Reminders sent directly to you each month!

Camellias Planting and Care in southern…

36217 Walter Andersen Nursery
Camellia plant care
Camellias are native to Japan, China and Indo-China, where they grow on well-drained…

Callicarpa spp. (Beautyberry) - Monthly…

12848 Julie Bawden-Davis
Beautyberry Monthly Plant Care
You can have these monthly Plant Care Reminders sent directly to you each month!

Cymbidium Orchids - Care in southern…

55255 Walter Andersen Nursery
Cymbidium Orchid Care
Cymbidium Orchids are so rewarding. Cymbidium Orchids come in so many colors and shade,…

Gardening Articles

Ron's Garden
Intrinsic Gardening Ron Vanderhoff

The Year in Gardening, 2008

Like gardens themselves, the practice of gardening is forever changing, never the same from one day top the next.
DIY Bird Saucer
Habitat Gardening Ron Vanderhoff

Want More Birds in Your Garden? Add Water

I’ve probably never met a gardener who didn’t also enjoy the delightful sounds and sights of warblers, wrens, bluebirds and thrushes in their garden.

Gardening Crossword Puzzle #1

26137
Flowers Crossword Puzzle
Print this and take a few minutes and have some fun trying to figure this crossword…

Andy Maycen - Southwest

9950
Region: Southwest

Add Organic Matter! - Not Always

6675
Succulent Garden
Today’s column may cause confusion.

Plant Recommendations

Bambusa oldhamii
Plant Recommendations Jason Kubrock

Best Clumping Bamboo for Screening - Southern California

Jason Kubrock's Top Plant Recommendation: Best Clumping Bamboo for Screening for Southern California. 
Loropetalum chinense
Plant Recommendations Taylor Murphy

Shrubs & Perennials with Red Color - Southern California

Taylor Murphy's Top Plant Recommendation: Favorite Shrubs & Perennials with Red Color.

Trees - Colorado

4985 Clea Danaan
Anna Apple
Clea Danaan's Top Plant Recommendation: Favorite Trees for Colorado and Western Mountains…

Roses for Southern Gardens

5621 Nellie Neal
Use Roses In the Garden
Be sure your garden includes roses, whether it’s a pergola covered in a rampant climber…

Trees - South East England

7751 Linsey Evans
Albizia julibrissin
Linsey Evans' Top Plant Recommendations: Favorite Trees for South East England.

Featured Plant Care

Roquette Arugula

Arugula - Roquette (Eruca vesicaria ssp. sativa) Monthly Plant Care Calendar

in Edibles
You can have these monthly Plant Care Reminders sent directly to you each month!
Ceanothus Monthly Plant Care

Ceanothus spp (California Lilac) - Monthly Plant Care Calendar

in Shrubs
You can have these monthly Plant Care Reminders sent directly to you each month!
Gardenia Monthly Plant Care

Cape Jasmine (Gardenia augusta) - Monthly Plant Care Calendar

in Shrubs
You can have these monthly Plant Care Reminders sent directly to you each month!
Planting Potatoes

Potato Mini Tuber Growing Guide

in Edibles
At Renee's Garden, I offer only the varieties that are very special for home gardeners,…

Latest Articles

Peach Leaf Curl

Peach Leaf Curl - Information Hub

Peach leaf curl is a common problem found on leaves of Peaches and Nectarines (and their…
Avocado Information Hub

Avocado - Growing and Plant Care Information Hub

in Edibles
We're bringing relevant information about Avocados (Persea americana) to one fantastic…

Popular Articles

Using the Mulch for Home Gardeners

Home Gardener: Using All The Great Features on the Mulch

You Can Use The Great Features on the Mulch For Free!
Baseball Field Maintenance

Baseball Field Maintenance - A General Guide for Fields of All Levels

in Lawn
More great baseball field resources can be found here (including a pdf version of this…
Queen Palm Care & Use

The Queen Palm (Syagrus romanzoffiana) Care & Use

in Trees
Jungle Music Palms and Cycads is a family owned and operated business established in 1977
Microgreens

What are Microgreens and How to Grow Them

in Edibles
Microgreens are tiny leafed vegetables that are grown from seed and require very little…

User Guides (Slide)

Popular Recommendations (Slide)

Upcoming Events

View All Events

Who's Online

We have 2909 guests and one member online

  • Bettina