Updates From The Farm

Plants and people share some pretty basic, essential needs. We both need food, water and shelter to survive and thrive. We have the advantage of being able to physically create shelter and go find food and water, but plants are dependent on having the essentials for survival from wherever they are set. It is the gardener’s job to work with the plants to help establish and reach their potential.

As far as the shelter part, just understand a plant will thrive in the right place. Sun exposure, light intensity wind protection etc., are examples. Plants get the majority of their food and water from the soil. Understanding how the soil drains and holds water is basic to a plant surviving. A plant’s food supply is held and processes by the organic matter in the soil. Think of the soil as the food pantry for the plant. Depending on the type of plant and stage of growth, some plants can be voracious eaters! 

Ths time of year you may be noticing plants that are showing stress or problems with disease and pest problems. Often, we take our garden for granted, but your shrubs and trees are working outside 24/7 and if the essentials are not available, they will be weak. Feed your plants with compost or a balanced fertilizer. Young plantings are like teenagers with a raging metabolism! Water thoroughly during dry periods. Mulch helps to moderated soil temperature and water holding ability which is becoming more important in this area. Come out the the Nursery to help find the right plant for the right place and get it started!

What is that shrub with the bright violet blue blooms right now? If the profusion of flowers are almost iridescent against the small, shiny dark green leaves, it is probably Ceanothus. The common name is California Lilac and it is a native to the coastal west. It is an evergreen that is deer resistant and drought tolerant once established. It blooms best in full sun and in most cases is very low maintenance. We have two forms here at Cloud Mountain.  The Victoria grows to 6 feet high and wide. Cool Blue is a smaller, mounding form with variegated foliage and flowers that are pale blue.  Come on out to the Nursery and see all our selections of ornamental shrubs and trees!

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