Thursday, October 01, 2015

Fall Yard & Garden Care

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 FALL HAS ARRIVED!
TIME TO PREPARE YOUR YARD FOR THE WINTER (BRRR!) AHEAD!

DEER, RABBITS & VOLE PROTECTION
Soon the deer, rabbits and small critters like mice and voles will be looking for new sources of food. Once the leaves are gone and the grass is covered by snow these animals will turn to the next closest source. Which is usually our valued trees and shrubs. So before the snow comes you need to protect your plants. Here are some options to help protect your yard.
 
SKOOT - APPLY WHEN SHRUBS & TREES ARE DORMANT
Applying skoot is one of the best methods to protect your plants. Skoot is a repellent that was developed to taste bad to the animals, after one taste they won't come back for more. It is can be applied once the trees and shrubs are dormant. But before it gets below zero during the day time.
 
You can apply Skoot by painting the undiluted product directly on the bark or by diluting it with equal parts of water and spraying it on the plants using a pump sprayer. This is the easiest way by far. For shrubs, you want to apply a light spray of Skoot starting at the base of the plant and going approximately four to five feet high. You have to picture how high up can a rabbit reach when it is sitting on top of the snow in mid winter. 
 
For trees you want a light spray on all sides of the trunk and on the lower branches again in the 4-5 ft range. Make sure that you get all sides of the trunk.
 
DOKTOR DOOM - NO BITE - APPLY ANYTIME
NEW! No Bite Animal Repellant
 
New from the Doktor Doom line of products is No Bite, a long lasting animal repellant for both wild and domestic animals. Works for both wild and domestic animals and works on a wide variety of animals; deer, cats & dogs, porcupines, mice & voles and more. Even works on some species of birds. With just two applications the plant will deter pests for up to one whole year. Active ingredient is denatonium benzoate - the bitterest compound known. Unlike blood based/fear repellants, No Bite contains Cedar Oil. The addition of this fragrance means it can be used near patios and sitting areas. The pressurized container makes it very easy to apply, sprays in any direction. Can be applied to both plant material and hard surfaces such as fences.
 
 
PLANTSKYDD - Can be sprayed on trees and shrubs to prevent deer and rabbits from eating your plants over the fall season. It will not last all winter so it would have to be reapplied mid winter by using warm water in the sprayer. It can also be sprayed over a lawn after you have done your final cut. This will prevent voles from wrecking your lawn. It is a great product to dip your tulips in before you plant. This will stop the squirells from digging them up!

GARDENS AND BEDS
 
Dig up and discard annuals, and vegetable plants to put in your compost pile. Dig up and discard any weeds in the garbage. Rake up any fallen leaves and debris in your flower beds. Fallen leaves can hold diseases that may overwinter.If you did have fungus on your plants work garden sulphur into the soil to prevent fungus from recurring in that spot next year. Remove summer bulbs and store in peat moss or vermiculite indoors for the winter. Apply Granual Gypsum to your flowers beds, and gardens.This can be tilled into the soil. It is a soil conditioner that will soften hard and clay soils. It also improves soil drainage and helps maintain a healthy balance of nutrients for the plants. Get your beds ready for fall planting or spring gardening. Add organic matter such as peat moss, Turkey Trot, coco, compost, or manure.This can help improve aeration and drainage, as well as supply nutrients. This can be done in addition to granular gypsum to give the soil a really good boost for next year. Plant your tulips using bulb food and fresh garden soil. Soak the bulbs in Plantskydd prior to planting to prevent squirrels from digging them up! Plant shrubs, evergreens, and perennials. FALL SALE ON -  20% OFF ALL PLANTS AND WEEKLY HALF PRICE DEALS! Early fall planting gives new plants enough time to get their roots established before winter. Use a growth supplement such as Myke to help stimulate healthy roots, and prevent transplant shock.
 
SHRUBS, TREES, PERENNIALS
 
Put down fertilizer spikes in late October ( 3 spikes for every 2" of trunk at chest height) When spring arrives, the fertilizer spikes will break down early with the heat and moisture and will give your tree an early boost! We have "Evergreen Spikes" "Tree Spikes" and "Fruit Tree Spikes" available!
 
A treatment of Myke can be given to any shrubs or trees that have been stressed or not growing well. This is done by putting holes in the ground around the root ball of the shrub or tree. The Myke is poured down the holes, then watered in.
If your plants have had problems with fungus, mold, mildew, blight, or insects Dormant Oil will prevent these from wintering over. It can be applied once the leaves have dropped if the temperature is above 5 degrees Celcius. It also can be applied in early spring when the buds on the plants are swollen, but before they leaf out. Perennials can be moved or split safely now. Use a growth supplement such as Myke to stimulate new root growth. Spring flowering perennials can be cut back. Fall flowering perennials can be left to enjoy over the winter. At the end of October peat moss can be mounded around sensitive plants and perennials to protect over winter.
Water regularly till the ground is frozen.

EVERGREEN AND CEDAR CARE
 
Fertilize with Evergreen Spikes in late October.
If evergreens have been stressed over the summer a treatment of Myke around the roots will help it repair any root damage that may have occurred.
Throughout September and October water evergreens weekly so they can build up their water stores until spring. The moisture is important to help them through our harsh winters. Any cedars that are in a sunny location can be sprayed with an antitranspirant Wilt-Pruf to protect against spring moisture loss. Any newly planted cedars can be protected with burlap and a frame made with wooden stakes. It is very important that the burlap does not touch the cedars.

FALL LAWN CARE

1. APPLY FALL FERTILIZER NOW, IF NOT OVERSEEDING YOUR LAWN.
 
2. APPLY PLANTSKYDD TO PREVENT VOLE DAMAGE
 
3. IF OVERSEEDING - MOW GRASS TO ABOUT 1 ½ " OVERSEEDING IS SEEDING OVER EXISTING GRASS TO FILL IN BARE PATCHES AND THICKEN UP THE GRASS TO CHOKE OUT WEEDS.
 
4. BAG OR RAKE UP ALL THE GRASS CLIPPINGS.
 
5. DO A CORE AERATION - JUST PUT ON YOUR GOLF SHOES AND WALK OVER THE LAWN!!!
 
6. SPREAD ABOUT ¼ " OF SCREENED TOPSOIL OR PEAT MOSS AND RAKE IT IN. I LIKE USING PEAT MOSS AS IT HAS NO WEEDS. WHEN USING PEAT MOSS, PUT IT IN A WHEELBARROW OR MUCK BUCKET AND ADD WATER UNTIL IT BECOMES LIKE A THICK SOUP. THEN APPLY IT TO YOUR LAWN AND RAKE IT IN.
 
7.CHOOSE A GOOD QUALITY OF GRASS SEED PREFERABLY WITH A LOT OF DIFFERENT VARIETIES OF FESCUE, RYE AND KENTUCKY BLUE GRASS.
 
8.BROADCAST THE SEED WITH A GRASS OR FERTILIZER SPREADER.
 
9.. USE A ROLLER OR TAMP THE GRASS SEED DOWN WITH YOUR RAKE. IT MUST COME IN CONTACT WITH THE SOIL TO GERMINATE.
 
10. WATER.
 
11. DORMANT SEEDING IS DONE MID TO LATE OCTOBER, JUST BEFORE THE FIRST SNOW. SEEDS WILL LAY DORMANT UNDER THE SOIL AND GERMINATE IN EARLY SPRING WITH THE HEAT AND MOISTURE.
 
12. IN EARLY SPRING THE SEEDS WILL GERMINATE WITH THE HEAT AND MOISTURE AND CHOKE OUT THE WEEDS!
 
13. ENJOY A BEAUTIFUL GREEN, THICK LAWN!
 
 
 
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 4:40 PM 0 Comments

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Oh No My Evergreens look brown!

 As the snow recedes and we are spending more and more time outside we are starting to see what the winter has done to our yards.  One of the first signs of how tough the winter has been is the color of our evergreens.  A lot of the cedars, spruce and pines around the city are a lovely shade of brown.  Most people’s first reaction is that the plant is dead.  This is most likely not the case.  The buds for this years growth will still be alive, they are just waiting for some heat to start growing.  Once the new growth flushes out it will cover up the brown needles .  To help the process along you need to start fertilizing and watering your evergreens as soon as the snow is gone.   A fertilizer that is high in Nitrogen ( the first number on the formula) is the best.  Miracle Gro  water soluble Evergreen and Acid Loving Plant Food is an excellent source of nitrogen with a formula of 28-10-10.  In a typical watering can ( 2 gallon) you add 2 tablespoons of fertilizer.  Soak the soil that is around the plant to feed the roots.  For best results apply the fertilizer every two weeks throughout May and June.  As for watering, a deep watering every week unless it rains.

 

Susan Jensen Stubbe

Posted by Tammy Jensen at 8:02 PM 0 Comments

Monday, February 10, 2014

Making Sense of Hydrangeas

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I know exactly what you have been worried about. Last summer I know it was worrying me. Then……Colleen Zacharias gave a seminar last September about …..Hydrangeas. And I took notes:
 
There are three types of Hydrangeas.
 
Arborescens, which is also commonly known as a mop head, has large round flower clusters. They bloom on new wood and should be pruned in late fall or early spring. The most well known is Annabelle, which can be pruned to 6” in the spring of its third year. 
 
The second type is Paniculata - Limelight and Quick Fire - which has a cone shaped flower cluster. It is the easiest to grow and also blooms on new wood. You can also prune this one in late fall or early spring. The Quick Fire Hydrangea is great for gardens as it blooms one month earlier than other Hydrangeas.
 
The third type is Macrophylla - Endless Summer - which is known for the large leaves. It blooms on new and old wood. This type, especially, doesn’t like the afternoon sun and must not be pruned. 
 
It’s important to consider the following guidelines when growing Hydrangeas. They need three deep waterings a week with a weak fertilizer mix. Most varieties need afternoon shade and they should all be mulched. 
 
Stop by and see us in the spring and check out all the varieties that we have at Jensen’s.
 
Now your worrying is over,
Jennifer

FIRE AND ICE HYDRANGEA

BELLA ANNA HYDRANGEA

 
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 10:15 AM 0 Comments

Monday, February 03, 2014

These long, cold days of winter...when will it end???

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Everyone you meet these days is talking and complaining about our crazy, cold, snowy winter.  Have you booked your winter vacation yet???  
Many gardeners I know are taking this time when they’re forced to be indoors, to reflect; gather information and plan for the spring that’s around the corner.  This is a great time to be going through all the seed catalogues that are arriving; choosing some new plants, some old favourites, colours and themes for the garden; and for perhaps thinking of planting a few more vegetables or herbs.  Many herbs and vegetables enjoy being planted amidst flowers and add interest to the garden, as well as beauty.  With all the snow accumulating, many gardeners can’t help thinking about the wet spring that may lie ahead.  This may affect the type of flowers or vegetables that you want to plant.  Now is the time to plan!
Many of us are enjoying our indoor gardens and houseplants.  Many indoor plants provide us with some much needed colour during these drab days of winter, while other larger ones soften and blend with groups of furniture, and other smaller plants enhance and adorn our tables and windowsills. Plants do a great job of cleaning our air.
Have you been checking your houseplants regularly for insects and disease?  With our busy lives, we often tend to neglect our plants, taking for granted that they will continue to perform on their own.  Then, one day when watering you notice that one of your plants is really suffering.  It looks wilted, is losing colour and it looks like it’s covered with tiny cotton balls.  Oh no, Mealy bug!  Isolate the plant immediately and spray with an insecticidal soap or use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol.  You may have to repeat this process a number of times.  Mealy bug is one of the hardest insects to control.  Whitefly, scale, aphids and red spider mite are also insects most common to houseplants.  If the leaves of your plant are looking a little yellow, dry and dropping, you may have an infestation of whitefly.  They flutter around the plant when disturbed.  The scale insect looks like little tiny bumps that collect along stems and at the base of leaves.  They cause a reddening of the tissue wherever they feed.  The stems usually lose vigor and die.  Aphids are usually light or dark green, are very tiny and also cluster on stems and underneath leaves.  They will literally suck the life out of your plant.  Red spider mite is seen as little red dots on the underside of the leaf and they usually attack when the humidity is low.  Herbs are susceptible to spider mite.  To increase the humidity, place your plants on a tray filled with pebbles and water.  Avoid misting your plants to increase the humidity as this will encourage insects and disease.  To discourage disease, remove dark, dead and sickly growth and dip your shears or pruners in a bleach solution to prevent the spread of disease.  Use an insecticidal spray to control whitefly, scale, aphids and spider mite.
To help your plants through the winter, let them rest.  Avoid fertilizing.  The optimum time to fertilize is from late January to the beginning of October.  Cut back on the watering.  Keep them away from heat registers, hot or cool drafts and warm appliances.  High room temperatures make the plant spindly, may cause blooming plants to drop buds or finish blooming prematurely and make them less resistant to insects and disease.  Keep your plants clean.  Dust the leaves using a soft cloth & lukewarm water wit a bit of mild dishwashing or insecticidal soap.  Avoid over-crowding or over-watering your plants.  Fungus is usually a result of poor air circulation. Also, avoid letting your plants dry out.  When they are stressed, that is when insects and disease attack!
Some dependable and easy to care for houseplants include the cactus, jade plant, sansevieria or mother-in-laws tongue, spider plant, wandering jew, ponytail palm and pothos or devil’s ivy.
If you have pets, please keep in mind some of the houseplants that have been reported by the A.S.P.C. (Animal Poison Control Centre) to affect some animals with mouth irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting and difficulty swallowing. They are elephant ear, arrowhead vine, begonia, caladium, calla lily and dumb cane.  The following house plants are more toxic and may cause diarrhea, colic, weakness, stupor, asphyxiation, colic, depression, leg paralysis, kidney failure and possibly death:  azalea, cyclamen and oleander.  If you suspect your pet has ingested any of these plants, please take your pet to your local veterinarian immediately or call the A.S.P.C. at 1-888-426-4435 for information.
 
On a lighter note, enjoy one of my favourite poems.  Some of you out there may relate. I’ve been there! Taken from the 2003 Prairie Garden Booklet.
 
My Wife the Gardener
 
She dug the plot on Monday
The soil was rich and fine
She forgot to thaw out dinner
So we went out to dine
 
She planted roses Tuesday
She says they are a must
They really are quite lovely
But she forgot to dust
 
On Wednesday it was daisies
They opened with the sun
All whites and pinks and yellows
But the laundry wasn’t done
 
The poppies came on Thursday
A bright and cheery red
I guess she really was engrossed
But never made the bed
 
It was Dahlias on Friday
In colours she adores
It never bothered her at all
All the crumbs upon the floors
 
 
I hired a maid on Saturday
My week was now complete
My wife can garden all she wants
The house will still be neat
 
It’s nearly lunchtime Sunday
And, I can’t find the maid
Oh no!  I don’t believe it
She’s out there with a spade!!!
 
And for the kids:
 
What did the fast tomato say to the slow tomato???
 
Ketchup!!!
 
Don’t worry, spring’s around the corner.  Enjoy this time to relax and plan for the craziness of spring!
 
Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 9:37 AM 0 Comments

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Deer, Rabbits and Other Critters

 Deer, Rabbits and Other Critters.
 
It's fall time in Winnipeg and as I looked out my front window this morning I am reminded it is soon time to apply Skoot 
to our trees and shrubs to repel deer, rabbits and other critters like mice.  The reminder is the huge buck that is standing 
in my front yard eating my Hostas. There must be a large population this year because the deer in my neighbourhood don’t usually 
venture across the street.  The forest area along the Seine River is usually enough of a food source for them.  But this year I 
am seeing them up on the road and down the Streets leading off Egerton Rd on a daily basis.
 
Skoot is a repellent that was developed to taste bad to the animals, after one taste they won't come back for more.  It is can be 
applied  once the trees and shrubs are dormant.  But before it gets below zero during the day time.
 
You can apply Skoot by painting the undiluted product directly on the bark or by diluting it with equal parts of water and 
spraying it on the plants using a pump sprayer.  This is the easiest way by far.
 
For shrubs, you want to apply a light spray of Skoot starting at the base of the plant and going approximately four to five feet
high. You have to picture how high up can a rabbit reach when it is sitting on top of the snow in mid winter.  
 
For trees you want a light spray on all sides of the trunk and on the lower branches again in the 4-5 ft range.  Make sure that 
you get all sides of the trunk.  
 
 
SKOOT Repellent for Rabbits, Mice and Deer concentrate when applied, will protect on an 
average the following number of plants, according to size: 
 
 Age Approx. Height Trees/litre 
 
 1yr. 0.3-0.5 metres 250-400 
 2yr. 0.5-1.0 metres 125-200 
 3yr. 1.0-2.0 metres 60-100 
 4yr. 1.0-2.5 metres 40-60 
 5yr. 2.0-4.0 metres 20-40
 
Animals tend to like younger trees and once your tree goes to the point that the trunk is 4-5" in diameter (caliper) there is a less
likely chance that the deer and rabbits will harm them.  
 
shrubs of all ages can be vulnerable.
 
You can apply Skoot to the following types of plants that tend to be animal favorites:
- Apple , Plum, Cherry, Pears
- ash
- elm
- birch
- poplar
- Rosyblooms
- Lilacs
- roses
- Hydrangea
Basically Skoot can be applied to most deciduous type of trees and shrubs.  But apply Skoot to the plants once they are dormant.
 
 
Skoot tends to dry quite quickly thus you want to full your sprayer out immediately with warm water.  Make sure you also flush out the nozzles
as well. Skoot will dry in the nozzle and hose parts clogging the sprayer. 
 
Happy Spraying
Susan Jensen Stubbe
 
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 1:04 PM 0 Comments

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Over-Wintering Herbs

1. Look for the most healthy plants to over-winter.
 
2. Rid your plants of insects and disease before bringing them in. Use Insecticidal soap or any organic product.  Make sure it is safe to use on edibles.  Isolate your plants for about 2 weeks from other houseplants before introducing them into the house to avoid spreading any insects and disease.
 
3. The best chance for success with some of the culinary herbs indoors for the winter is to start new plants from seed.  The best time to start seed is early August for herbs such as basil, chives, coriander, dill, parsley, marjoram, rosemary, sage, summer savory and thyme.  Plant in 4 inch pots using a medium of soil, sand, peat and perlite. Sink the pots into the garden up to their necks. Cover the seeds with sand or sphagnum moss.  Keep moist and fertilize with a liquid seaweed or a fish emulsion (Organique) when the sprouts are 3 inches high.  If you’ve missed the August sowing, start them any time indoors.
 
4. Other culinary herbs for indoors such as mint, oregano and French tarragon are best prepared by potting up root divisions after the harvest.  The optimum time to dig up the plants that you want to keep indoors is about a month before the first fall frost.  Bring in existing plants or make new ones by dividing them.  Capture as many of the roots as you can.  Mature plants, such as sweet marjoram, lavender and scented geraniums should be cut back by about 1/3 their full height to make them more manageable.  (You can cut them back even more drastically if the root ball is small.)  Put each one into a pot that is slightly larger than its roots.  Mint needs a lot of room so consider planting some in hanging baskets.  Fill in with a soil less growing mix.  Let the plants get settled in the pots in a lightly shaded outdoor location for a week or so.  Then move them into deeper shade for a week to get them ready to come indoors. Before frost arrives, bring tender herbs indoors to the window or light garden you’ve prepared.  
 
5. Let chives and garlic chives stay out through a month or so of cold before you bring them indoors.  They will grow much better indoors if they get a short winter to trick them into thinking it’s spring.  If conditions are right, they will re-sprout and provide you with some fragrant foliage to harvest in midwinter. 
 
6. Spearmint and tarragon will lose some leaves, but will perk up by February.  Keep them cool and dry until they re-sprout.  You can then begin to water and fertilize lightly every couple of weeks.
 
7. Other herbs to consider for inside gardening are aloe, bay tree, catnip, lavender, scented geraniums and lemon verbena.
 
8. When your herbs are grouped together indoors, they may be more susceptible to pest problems.  If you find whiteflies fluttering around the indoor herb garden, spray with Insecticidal soap or another organic product to kill mature flies and repeat until you get rid of newly hatched generations.
 
9. Red spider mites may attack because the humidity is low.  If so, use a pebble tray and fight them with insecticidal soap (Pebbles allow you to rest herb plants over – not in a tray of water.)  Avoid misting your plants to increase humidity as this will encourage insects and disease.  To discourage disease, remove dark, dead and sickly growth, and scrub your pruning shears or knife in a solution of 1 part bleach to 10 parts water between each cut.
 
10. The key to successfully growing herbs indoors is bright light.  A large window facing south is best, with an eastern exposure the next choice.  Bay, lemon balm and the other mints need only partial sun indoors and can be in east of west-facing windows.  If you cannot provide the necessary light but want herbs, consider investing in a grow-light unit.  This may be a simple fluorescent work light with 4 foot tubes, one warm and one cool-white, or two full-spectrum bulbs.  To be effective, fluorescent lights should be lit for at least 15 to 16 hours per day.
 
11. Most herbs need cool temperatures – in the 15 – 20 degree Celsius range during the day and cooler at night.  As well, good air circulation is important to reduce problems with fungus diseases.  Make sure air flows freely around the plants, but don’t put them in front of a heating vent.  It’s too hot and dry there.  Instead, invest in a small fan to gently keep the air moving.
 
12. Adjust the amount you fertilize to your light levels.  In a dark area where herbs struggle to stay alive, they may not need fertilizer at all.  In bright light where herbs are actively growing, you can fertilize every month.  Be sure to harvest fast-growing herbs often so they’ll stay compact.  You may want to replant crops that you use often so you will always have a fresh young plant to take the place of an older one.
 
13. You must also pay a bit more attention to the water and nutrient needs of your indoor plants.  Different herbs need different quantities of water when grown indoors.  Basil, parsley, mint, chervil and arugula do best if kept moist, not bone dry or soggy wet.  Let Mediterranean plants such as rosemary and lavender dry out slightly before you water again.  Too much water has probably killed more container-grown herbs than too little.  The plants shouldn’t sit in water, but instead, the water should evaporate up around them.  Because most of our homes are dry during the winter, increase the humidity around the plants by using a room or whole-house humidifier.  Alternatively, set the herbs on either commercially available trays that hold water and have raised racks for holding the pots, or on trays filled with pebbles.
 
14. When you wish spring would hurry up, spend some time nurturing your sage or lavender. 
Here is a list of plants that can thrive indoors, with recommended means of propagation.  This chart was compiled by Susan McClure and appears in her book The Herb Gardener:  A Guide for All Seasons.
 
Sow Seed Take Cuttings
 
Arugula Basil
Basil Mint
Chervil Oregano
Coriander/cilantr Pineapple sage
Dill         Rosemary
Mustard Sage
Parsley Scented Geraniums
Summer Savory Thyme
Sweet Marjoram
 
Bring in Mature Plants
 
Chives         Garlic Chives
Greek Oregano Lavender
Lemon Verbena Mint
Rosemary Sage
Scented Geraniums Summer Savory
Sweet Bay Sweet Marjoram
Thyme
 
 
Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 6:29 PM 0 Comments

Friday, September 27, 2013

Over-wintering Tender Plants and Tropicals

I was able to have my Red Star Dracaena over-wintered for a number of years by friends and the plants grew to quite a nice size. That’s the lure, growing larger plants, along with big savings. None of the following methods are foolproof, but, as you experiment, you will find you are able to use more than one method to over-winter some species.

Warm, Bright Conditions

Experts suggest moving plants to a shady spot for a week or two and checking them for insect and disease before bringing them indoors. Bring the plants indoors before the first frost and place them by a bright east, south or west facing window .Large plants can be cut back by a half to two-thirds before bringing them in, to reduce their size and slow them down. Water whenever the soil dries out and give the pots a quarter turn every couple of weeks so they don’t get lop-sided. Additional humidity can be provided by grouping the plants together and putting the plants on top of trays filled with pebbles and water. Avoid misting, unless necessary, as this encourages insects and disease. In winter, our indoor air becomes so dry and this can really take a toll on tropical plants. Turning the temperature down to the mid-sixties helps with the humidity. As the days start to get longer, provide an occasional dose of diluted fertilizer. The new foliage on some plants may be noticeably smaller because of the lack of light. You might consider supplementing this with some kind of grow light.
Some plants that can be over-wintered under these conditions are:
Begonias, Bird of Paradise, Coleus, Elephant’s Ears, Hibiscus, Oleanders, Passionflowers, Plectranthus and Sages.

Cool, Bright Conditions

The following can be over-wintered under these conditions:
Cestrums, Clivias, Cordylines, Crinums, Flowering maples, Honey bush and New Zealand flaxes.

Cool, Dark Conditions

Many tropical plants have a dormant period triggered by a dry period, not the onset of winter. Cool, dark conditions are ideal for planters that go dormant. The bulb can be taken out of the ground; remove the mud and store it in a plastic bag that is not closed. Mist the bulb lightly once a month until spring; Many plants can survive the winter without light, water and sometimes even soil.
For shrubby plants or plants with fleshy stems and foliage, such as banana plants, cut down on the watering and stop the fertilizing. Cut them back and take them inside to a cool spot. Bulbous plants need to be blackened by frost before digging. Use a pitchfork when digging to prevent damage. Remove the blackened foliage and store in dampened peat moss in a cool spot. Ensure the peat moss is not too wet, otherwise they may become diseased, get fungal infection and rot. Divide rhizomes or take offsets from bulbs and tubers in the spring.



The following can be over-wintered under these conditions:

Angel’s trumpets, Bananas, Caladiums, Calla Lilies,, Cannas, Dahlias, Durantas, Elephant Ears, Ginger Lilies, Gingers, Glory bushes, Lantanas, Pineapple Lilies and Tropical smoke bush.


Much of this information was taken from the Fine gardening web-site.

Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:14 PM 0 Comments

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Arlene's Tips on Growing Tulips and Fall Bulbs

Spring bulbs must be planted in the fall. In our climate, we can plant bulbs from September through December as long as the ground can still be worked. Over the years I have planted spring bulbs as late as mid December. One secret is to prepare the hole where you would like to plant the bulbs. Take in the soil you remove from the hole to use when planting. Cover the hole with a board or cardboard box and mark the spot so as when we get snow, you are still able to identify the spot. Plant your bulbs when you are able using the warm soil and water them in. Use a bulb booster or bone meal when planting. Following are some of my tips:

1. Choose healthy, unblemished bulbs that are hardy to our area, Zone 3.
2. Soak your bulbs in Plantskyd to avoid having them dug up by squirrels.
3. Also, squirrels, rabbits and deer don’t like Daffodils so they are always nice to plant in with tulips to deter the critters.
4. Break up the soil before planting. This is the time to amend your soil with peat moss or compost and a bit of sand.
5. Make sure you plant the bulbs with the pointed end up. If you are unsure of which is the right end, plant the bulb on its side and it will find its own way.
6. The general rule of thumb for planting is to plant the bulb two to three times as deep as the bulb is tall. In our zone you can add a few more centimeters in depth. Read the packaging for information on how far apart to plant that type of bulb.
7. Bulbs like it dry so avoid planting them in wet spots. Add sand to the bottom of the hole for good drainage.
8. When planting, group bulbs of the same colour and type together for a “Wow”! You might try planting some taller tulips near the back with some daffodils; some grape hyacinths in front bounded by a bed of crocus Let your imagination go wild! Make sure you plant some in a spot that you can enjoy looking out a kitchen or living room window. Avoid planting tulips in a straight line if you’re planting a border. Plant them in a triangle all the way along and they will look much fuller when they bloom. Try planting some bulbs you’ve never planted before, or try planting some in the lawn or around trees or shrubs. Snowdrops, Crocus and Grape Hyacinths are great bulbs to plant in the lawn.
9. Consider the bloom time and you will be able to create waves of colour in your garden for many months.
10. After the bulbs bloom in the spring, let the stems and leaves die back naturally and brown before you remove them. The stem and leaves replenish the bulb for next year’s bloom. To encourage more blooms for next year, apply fertilizer as the shoots emerge from the soil and again immediately after flowering.
11. Plant the bulbs behind or near perennials that will grow and hide the stem and leaves as they are browning.

Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 11:43 AM 0 Comments

Friday, August 30, 2013

Wasps bothering you?

Are you being bothered by Wasps?

I was in to the greenhouse the other day when I spotted a few things that we carry to rid your outdoor patio area and yard of wasps. The wasps are starting to appear already and never at an opportune moment. Just when we’re about to sit down for a nice meal on the patio or enjoy a drink outside, there they are. Many people are allergic to yellowjacket stings so must always be on guard.
Jensen’s carries Doktor Doom that will kill wasps, mosquitoes, house flies and many other insects as well as ants and bed bugs! I understand it has also proven effective on the dreaded Lily Beetle.
We carry yellowjacket traps that are non-toxic. They come complete with an attractant. You just add water and hang. There are no killing agents, the insects die naturally. The traps catch ten yellowjacket species, but will not trap beneficial honeybees.
We also carry the Waspinator, a durable, weatherproof device that resembles a wasp nest. It acts like a scarecrow for wasps – other wasps see it as an enemy nest and avoid the area. It can be left out year-round in any weather. No harmful chemicals, no dead wasps to clean up, no maintenance, and no more wasps!
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 2:20 PM 0 Comments

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Arlene's Late Summer Gardening Tips

1. Thinking of over-wintering some of your plants? Start taking your plants in before the nights start dropping to below 10 degrees. Water them well and spray with an insecticidal soap or product to rid the plants of any insects and disease. Isolate the plants for a couple of weeks before introducing them to the house and near houseplants.
2. Collecting seeds or cuttings? Let the seeds mature, turn brown and dry on the plant. If you collect them too early, they will not germinate. Seeds such as tomatoes should be collected, fermented for about a week in a jar filled with a little bit of water and then dried and stored. Collect cuttings now while the plant is still strong and healthy and before the temperature at night starts falling.
3. High humidity causing mildew and fungus? Mix 1 – 2 T. of baking soda into 1 litre of water. Shake well and spray on plants that are susceptible or are suffering. Spray weekly. If your plant has become entirely covered with mildew, you may need something stronger. Drop into Jensens to pick up a cure. Sulphur Dust is a great product to use if a number of your plants have been suffering. Fungus is a cause of not enough air circulation and high humidity. You may want to give the infected plants a bit of fertilizer to help it through its stress.
4. Are you still fertilizing? Continue fertilizing all of your annuals, but, now is the time to stop fertilizing your trees, shrubs and perennials, unless they are suffering. Let them start preparing for winter rather than start producing more tender foliage that may be susceptible to damage from an early frost. Roses have to prepare for winter. Stop fertilizing and deadheading as you want them to start forming rose-hips. Fertilizer stakes for your trees, fruit trees and shrubs are great to put down just before the ground starts freezing so they will get a boost with the warmer temperatures of spring.
5. Harvesting herbs? Gather herbs early in the morning when the aromatic oils are the strongest. Hang them upside down in a clean brown paper bag to dry. The bags keep out the light and catch any seeds or leaves that may fall off the stems. Cut a few holes in each bag to increase air circulation. To keep spices and herbs longer, store them in the freezer rather than the cupboard.
6. Growing tomatoes? Now is the time to cut the tops off your tomato plants so the strength will go into the fruit. To peel fresh tomatoes, plunge them briefly into boiling water, then into cold water. The skins will crack and slip off. You can peel peaches and plums the same way.
7. Bumper crop of Tomatoes? Freeze whole tomatoes on baking sheets and then store them in plastic bags until ready to use. Use them in soups, stews, casseroles or chili.
OR
Think of our friends at Winnipeg Harvest and bring them some of your excess tomatoes and vegetables!!!

Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)


Posted by Tammy Jensen at 3:42 PM 0 Comments

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Arlene’s Collection of Tips and Tricks - Part 3

1. To keep dried spices and herbs longer, store them in the freezer rather than in the cupboard. 2. If you have run out of rooting hormone while planting slips of plants, use cinnamon. 3. Have you ever tried freezing tomatoes? It’s an especially good trick in the middle of hot August when you’re inundated with a bumper crop. Freeze your whole tomatoes on baking sheets and then store them in plastic bags in the freezer. The skins will conveniently crack during freezing, making it easy to remove them once the tomatoes have thawed. 4. Boil cinnamon and cloves in water on the back of the stove to eliminate cooking odours and to freshen the air. 5. Keep charcoal briquettes in the refrigerator to sweeten the air. To refresh them, just heat the briquettes gently in a heavy pot, you’ll find that the odours they have absorbed will vanish into thin air. 6. Safe Pest Treatments for Houseplants – Spot treatment with alcohol will eliminate mealy bugs on houseplants. To control whiteflies, aphids and spider mite, add 1 Tablespoon of dish detergent to 1 cup of vegetable oil. Take no more than 1 – 2 tsp. of this solution and add it to 1 cup of water in a spray container. Shake well and spray on both sides of the plant’s leaves. 7. Here’s an efficient watering device for any garden plant. Take a plastic gallon jug and remove the cap, cut out the bottom, turn it upside down, and force the neck of the jug into the ground close to the plant. Then, fill the jug with water. It’s a good way to fertilize as well. 8. Cut the bottom of 2 litre plastic bottles and use over delicate plants as protection when planting your garden. 9. Pinch out new growth on plants to encourage bushiness. 10. Snails: Method 1 – Ammonia Spray: 1 part ammonia to 10 parts water, spray on slugs early in the morning. It does not hurt the plant; however, you should be careful not to spray everywhere as it will kill good bugs as well. 11. Snails: Method 2 – Barrier Method: Around the base of the plants under attack, right around the stem where it goes into the ground, sprinkle baby powder or talc which sticks to their gummy bodies so they will not go through it or, if they do, it will kill them eventually. An inch of sand, the coarser the better, like a moat around the plant, makes it unpleasant to impassable for most slugs. Copper bands cause a shock to the slugs. This can be bought in a tape form at many garden centres. 12. Snails: Method 3 – Boiling Water: In the very early spring, pour boiling water along any hard edge that is in contact with the soil of a flower bed. This would be like a sidewalk, fence or edging material including large stones or rocks in your garden. This will kill the eggs. Now, this can be challenging if like in most gardens you have huge spaces that fit this definition. Do it in areas where there is a lot of moisture or shade where you are having a serious snail colony problem. 13. Drainage for containers: Especially for large pots where you also want to reduce weight or if you move them around, use/recycle small plastic bottles or containers like pill bottles, empty hair spray or hand lotion bottles. Put a layer of those on the bottom and then add a layer of newspaper or landscape fabric before filling with earth and plants. You will only need about 8 – 12 inches for growing most annuals. 14. Caging sloppy plants: Cut tomato cages in half lengthwise, open them up and tuck under plants to hold them up. I often would cut the bottom section off and use for smaller plants. This is a great solution to keep your plants looking neat and upright. Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 4:19 PM 0 Comments

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Arlene's Collection of Gardening Tips & Tricks - Part 1

I was perusing my pile of gardening articles and information when I came across my collection of tips that I have collected over the years and I would like to share them with you. Enjoy! 1. To get rid of Aphids, mix 1 Tbsp liquid soap and 1 cup of vegetable oil together. Add 2 tsp. of the blend to 1 gallon of water. Spray the plants with the mixture and follow with a spray of water. Wait about 15 minutes and then repeat. Don’t use this on squash, cauliflower or cabbage as they can suffer leaf burn. 2. To test if seeds are viable, put them in a container of water. If they float to the top, they are not good. 3. Prolong the life of cut flowers by putting a couple of drops of bleach in the water. The stems in the vase will stay bacteria free. 4. Kill weeds and grass growing in sidewalk cracks by dousing them with undiluted bleach. 5. Plant mint between cabbages to discourage caterpillars and other pests. 6. Plant green beans next to eggplant and potatoes. The beans deter an eggplant and potato nemesis, the Colorado Potato Beetle. 7. Natural sweetening for Tomato Sauce: If the tomato sauce you’re making isn’t sweet enough, instead of adding sugar, grate in some carrots, they work wonders! 8. Keeping lettuce longer: Moisten a clean kitchen towel; then wrap it around a head of lettuce. Place the wrapped head in an open plastic bag and store it in the refrigerator. It will keep well for up to 2 weeks. (Don’t seal the bag, allow the air to circulate.) 9. To peel fresh tomatoes, plunge them briefly into boiling water, then into cold water. The skins will crack and slip off. You can peel peaches, plums and beets the same way. 10. Storing potatoes: Don’t store potatoes near apples as apples give off ethylene gas, which causes potatoes to sprout. 11. Allow water to come to room temperature before using it on seedlings you start indoors as cold water chills the seedling roots, significantly slowing growth. 12. If you have trouble getting your beet seeds to germinate, try spreading the seeds on a piece of wax paper and then, using a rolling pin, crush the outside husks. This gives the seeds a head start. 13. For weeds growing in the cracks of a sidewalk or patio, mix ¼ cup of salt, 1 litre of vinegar and 2 tsp. of dish soap. Spray on the weeds when they are actively growing. 14. To keep cats and dogs off your lawn, put 2 – 3 cloves of garlic and 3 -4 hot red peppers into a blender to grind them up. Then combine this mixture with about a gallon of water and a few drops of dishwashing soap. Mix well. Sprinkle this solution around the edges of your yard and garden and along sidewalks. Repeat often. Stay tuned for more! Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:00 AM 0 Comments

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Arlene's Dill Pickle Recipe

Arlene’s Dill Pickle Recipe – Makes about 7 – 1 litre jars 18 cups of water (spring water works best, if possible) 1 cup of white vinegar 1 cup of coarse pickling salt ½ cup of white sugar cloves of garlic bay leaves fresh dill seed pickling cucumbers Wash cucumbers and prick them a couple of times with a fork to prevent them from exploding. Bring water, vinegar, salt & sugar to a boil to make the brine. Pack jars with cucumbers, 1 clove of garlic, 1 bay leaf and a sprig of dill. Fill brine to the top of the jar. Seal. Store for 2 weeks before use. I found using spring water makes them last longer and they’re clearer and crisper. Store in a cool spot.
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:00 AM 0 Comments

Monday, July 22, 2013

Arlene's Beet Pickle Recipe

Arlene’s Beet Pickle Recipe 4 cups of white sugar 4 cups of white vinegar 3 cups of beet juice 1 Tablespoon of coarse salt Cloves Fresh beets Wash beets. Place them in a big pot and cover them with boiling water. Boil until tender. Save the juice!!! Mix 4 cups of sugar, 4 cups of vinegar, 3 cups of beet juice and 1 Tablespoon of course salt. Bring to a boil. Put a couple of cloves in each jar. Peel the beets while they are still hot and then cut them up into the jars. Cover beets with the brine and seal. Enjoy!
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:00 AM 0 Comments

Friday, July 19, 2013

Composting made easy!

Composting is one of the greatest ways to recycle and add nutrient-rich humus back into your lawn and garden, naturally. There is less waste; you will create soil with a greater water-holding capacity and you will have better crops with better created nutrients. The microscopic organisms in compost help break down organic matter for use by the plant; help ward off plant disease and aerate the soil. Compost also stabilizes nutrients, helping neutralize over-phosphorous limits. So, let’s do it the easy way. You really don’t need a large, fancy compost bin; all you need is a bit of an area in the garden a few feet square. Any of your fruit and vegetable peelings, coffee and tea grinds, grass clippings, leaves, table scraps, straw, lawn and garden plants, annual weeds that have not gone to seed, egg shells, flower clippings, dryer lint, sawdust, twigs, shredded paper (avoid using the glossy coloured paper) and cardboard are items that can be composted. DO NOT add any meat or milk products, fish scraps, bones, diseased plants or perennial weeds to your compost pile. The fish scraps will attract pests and the diseased plants and the perennial weeds will spread throughout your compost. Also, do not add any pet manure. To accelerate the compost process, chop the larger material into small pieces. A blender works very well for kitchen scraps and peelings. Do not add banana or peach peels as well as orange rind, unless organic, as they may contain pesticide residue. You can either dig in the compostables in that area of your garden (I did this for years and it didn’t take long to break down) or if you have a bit larger area, you can start your compost pile right on top of the bare earth. This allows for earthworms and beneficial organisms to aerate the compost and be transported to your garden. Add a few inches of twigs or straw first. This helps aerate the pile and adds drainage. Add your compost in layers of moist and then dry. The moist would be food scraps, seaweed and tea bags. Dry materials would be twigs, straw, and leaves. Then, add green manure in the form of grass clippings, clover, wheatgrass, etc., or any other nitrogen source. This helps activate the compost pile and speed the process along. Jensen’s also carries Compost Activator by Orgunique, a 100% organic product that speeds up decomposition and breakdown of organic waste by increasing microbial activity. Within a very short time, you will have a high grade compost, rich in minerals and nutrients. After adding your green manure or nitrogen source, water occasionally or let Mother Nature do the job with the rain. Cover the pile with wood, plastic sheeting or anything else you may have that will help maintain moisture and heat, which are two essentials in composting. Covering also prevents the compost from being over-watered by rain. The compost pile should be moist but not soaked. Turn the pile every few weeks with a pitch fork or shovel. Oxygen is required for the process to work. Mixing or turning your compost pile is key to aerating the composting materials and speeding up the process. Adding a layer of soil to your compost pile will help mask any odours. Once your compost pile is established, you can add in new materials by mixing them in rather than adding them in layers. Your plants will soon be enjoying their own Black Gold! Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 3:21 PM 0 Comments

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Keeping Your Plants Healthy!

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Make Your Life Easy by Keeping Your Plants Healthy! If you’re wondering why some of your plants are just not performing the way you expected, maybe it’s because they are starving! Keep in mind the plants you purchase from most garden centres are grown in a soil less mix. It has little to no nutrient value as it is composed mainly of peat moss, perlite and possibly some vermiculite. If you’re not into composting, try using a fertilizer that is 100% organic. Jensen’s carries a fabulous line of organic fertilizers made by Orgunique, a trademark of BioFert a Canadian company out of Langley, B.C. Orgunique provides a 100% organic and chemical-free gardening choice to help build greener and healthier gardens. The General Purpose Fertilizer 2.5-2-5 is a 100% organic liquid product that offers an environmentally friendly alternative to your gardening needs and helps keep your plants looking vibrant and fresh. It can be used on all indoor and outdoor plants including fruits, vegetables and ornamentals, etc. The Rose and Flower Food 2-3-5 is a 100% organic product that is formulated to meet nutritional requirements of flowering plants in your garden. The product is easy to use and will keep your flowering plants fresh and blooming. Rose and Flower Food 2-3-5 can be used for bedding plants, hanging baskets, potted plants and flowering shrubs. Rose growers successfully combat powdery mildew and other fungal diseases by spraying roses with a solution of 3 Tablespoons of baking soda in a gallon of water. Tip – Never spray your plants when the sun is shining on the leaves as this may promote leaf burn. Orgunique’s House Plant Food 2-1-3 is the way to go if you are concerned about exposing your home to chemicals. Unlike chemical fertilizers, it fulfills all nutritional requirements in a natural way. It is 100% organic liquid fertilizer ideal for feeding houseplants and patio plants. It brings rich foliage and bright colour to all houseplants. Kelp Boost is another great product to try and is a supplement to be used along with plant food. It is a 100% organic emulsion made from highest grade Atlantic Kelp. It is an ideal plant supplement that provides vigour and boosts all stages of plant development. As a spray, all you have to do is mix 3-4 tsp. (15-20 ml) in 1 litre of water and spray once every 10 – 15 days or so, or apply 2 – 3 tsp. in 1 litre of water and water it in at the root zone. Apply to wet ground. Tip – Always ensure your plants are well-watered before you fertilize to avoid any burning of leaves. Arlene Ortiz (Wheeler)
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:00 AM 0 Comments

Friday, May 17, 2013

How to climatize your annuals and perrenials

 

We must remember to get our plants ready for the great outdoors where they will be subject to the elements of the season.  Most plants at many greenhouses and different places have been babied and have not been used to the wind and the direct sun.

 To make sure your plants are going to survive and be healthy and strong, put them first in a shady, sheltered area and then gradually move them into the sun and the wind for a few hours at a time.  You may have to do this for a few days before planting them out into the garden area or will they will eventually call home.  They will need a lot of water for the first while they are out so they don’t dry out and get stressed.  If they look wilted or the leaves become white (scorched by the sun), give them a good drink and move them back into a sheltered, shady area for a few hours before you move them back out again to where they will be planted.  If you have already planted them out into the garden area, you may have to shelter them from the hot sun and wind by using sheets, newspaper or cardboard boxes to cover them.  Plant out your sun plants first and then your shade plants.  If the temperature drops below 10 degrees at night, your shade plants may suffer and become stressed, so if you have a lot of planting to do, leave your shade plants until the temperature at night is 10 degrees or higher.  If you are planting your containers, the ideal time to plant is in the early evening.  They will then get the rest of the night to settle in before the hot, windy conditions of the day. 

 For the first week, just make sure everything is well watered and then after the first week once they are settled in, start your fertilizing program.  Most plants purchased have little to no food in the soil less mix they are grown in, so you must improve the soil with compost or fertilizer of some kind.  For blooming plants, I recommend a water soluble fertilizer with a high middle number to encourage bloom.  Miracle Gro 15-30-15 is a good one to use.  A fertilizer too high in nitrogen, the first number will encourage a lot of leaf, but little bloom.  If you follow this simple plan, you will have strong, healthy plants that will ward off a lot of insects and give you a lot of bloom throughout the rest of the summer!

Arlene Wheeler



Posted by Tammy Jensen at 7:29 AM 0 Comments

Friday, May 03, 2013

Live the Life! AND I need your Help!

I’m so very lucky! I have the best job in the world and the best partner in life who is the greatest support – how lucky can a girl get!

I’m in heaven these days. I get to go into schools all across the city, visit with so many great students and teachers; enjoy listening to all the various renditions of “Oh Canada” as their school day begins; talk to the students and teachers about gardening and what different vegetables need to grow strong and healthy; show them what they can grow in a recycling container; plant a plant with them so they have the experience of planting and being able to take a plant home to care for; talk about what plants need to grow; what we get from plants besides food and share some gardening jokes and riddles. I really enjoy being with the kids, they wear their heart on their sleeve; they are able to take in so much and are very eager to learn, eager to plant and also share their gardening experiences. Just when you think they’re not listening, they surprise you. Since I started teaching in the schools the beginning of April, I have visited 13 different schools and taught approximately 650 children and I have approximately 1,000 students left to plant with by mid June! So, I am appealing to you, if you have any small containers, approximately 2 ¼” x 2 ¼ “, please think of us and bring them in for us to recycle and to support our school program. Jensen’s supplies me with all the soil and plant material, so if I can get some more containers for the children to plant in, that would be a great help! These children are our future and I know we have some great gardeners coming up!

Arlene Wheeler
Gardening Teacher and Passionate Gardener
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 11:13 AM 0 Comments

Monday, April 29, 2013

Slippery, Slimy Slugs, Yuck!

 This is the time of year our hearts and minds turn to gardening and the great outdoors!  We live in Winnipeg, wait 5 minutes and the weather will change!

Think of some of the problem areas of your garden instead and this is the time of year to deal with them. 

Slugs are slimy creatures resembling snails that come up from the ground at night and make holes in your beautiful plants (they really love hosta), leaving a slimy white trail in their wake.

If you have had a problem with slugs in a particular area of your garden, now is the time to get out the fan rake and lightly rake the soil.  In giving the area a light raking, it will bring up all the eggs the slugs have laid and you will be providing food for all the birds coming into your yard, while reducing the number of slugs.  Often times they love to lay their eggs all along a sidewalk or walkway so rake the soil lightly along these areas. Be careful not to compact the soil by walking on it.  Take a long board out to the garden area with you to use to walk on so as not to compact the soil by walking on it. To encourage birds into your garden area, place some drier lint out by a shrub or tree.  They will soon find it to help build their nests and will help rid your garden area of slugs at the same time. 

Here are a few more tips to rid your garden area of Slugs.

  1. Ammonia Spray:  Mix 1 part ammonia to 10 parts of water.  Spray on slugs in early morning or late at night when they like to come out and do their damage.  It does not hurt the plants; however, you should be careful not to spray everywhere as it will kill the good insects as well.
  2. Barrier method: Around the base of the plants under attack, right around the stem, use baby powder or talc which will stick to their gummy bodies.  They will not go through it, or, if they do, it will kill them eventually.  An inch of sand, the coarser the better, like a moat, the sharpness of the grains make it unpleasant to impassable for most slugs.  Copper bands apparently cause a shock to slugs.  This can be bought in a tape form at most garden centers.
  3. Boiling Water: In the very early spring pour boiling water along any hard edge that is in contact with the soil of the bed.  This would be like a sidewalk, fence or edging material including large stones or rocks.  This will kill the eggs.  This can be challenging if you have huge spaces that fit this definition.  Apply in areas where there is a lot of moisture or shade where you are having a serious snail colony problem.
  4. Egg Shells – Save your egg shells, break them up and add around the plants in your garden that are affected.  They will help cut their skin and they will tend to keep away from your plants.

 If your slug problems persist, drop into our garden center and pick up some slug bait to rid your garden of the nasty, slimy ones!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Tammy Jensen at 7:55 AM 0 Comments

Thursday, April 04, 2013

The "Alex" Basket by Jennifer

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 Alex is one of my favourite girls.  She was diagnosed with bone cancer - Ewing's Sarcoma - about fifteen months ago.  What do you do?  You sew her a quilt, make her a couple of hats and you get her favourite popcorn sent from Chicago.  In November you find out that she won that battle. 
But in December she was diagnosed with Leukemia, cause by the chemotherapy treatment for the bone cancer.  Now what do you do?  You bring food to the hospital to feed the family.  And then you ask your boss if you can plant some hanging baskets containing only pink flowers.  And that's what we did.  They are starting to grow and by May they will be beautiful.  For every one we sell $5 will go towards cancer research.
 
Alex is still in hospital, but she is a fighter. In May, when the weather is warm and the snow is finally gone I will bring her an "Alex" basket.  I'm sure she will like it.  
 
It's just what you do.
 
Jennifer

 
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 1:02 PM 0 Comments

Monday, February 11, 2013

Hot and New Plants 2013

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What’s Hot & What’s New 2013
Jensen Nursery & Landscaping Ltd.
 

Tropical's/Elephant Ear persian palm, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, Manitoba

Persian Palm
Alocasia  x ‘Calidora’  
4-6high &  2-3ft wide   
part sun – shade, wet
Deer resistant

Buddha’s Palm
Alocasia cuculata ‘Buddha Palm’
2-4 ft high & 1-2ft wide
part sun – shade, wet
Deer resistant

Borneo Giant Upright Elephant Ears
Alocasia macrorrhiza 'Borneo Giant' 
7 - 10ft high & 4 - 5ft wide
part sun – shade, wet
Deer resistant Elephant Ears Black Ruffle, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, manitoba

Purple Upright Elephant Ears
Alocasia plumbae ‘Nigra’
4-5 ft high 2-3ft wide
part sun – shade, wet
Deer resistant

Black Ruffles Elephant Ears
Colocasia esculenta ‘Black Ruffles’
4 - 5 ft high & 3 - 4 ft wide
sun to part shade, wet
Deer resistant

Elena Elephant Ears
Colocasia esculenta 'Elena'
24 - 36" high & 24 - 36“wide
sun to part shade , wet
Deer resistant banana Plant Zebrina, Winnipeg, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center

Mojito Elephant Ears
Colocasia esculenta ‘Mojito'
4 - 6 ft high & 3 - 4ft wide
sun to part shade, wet
Deer resistant

Thailand Giant Elephant Ears
Colocasia gigantea ‘Thailand Giant’
7-9ft high & 4 - 5ft wide
sun to part shade, wet
Deer resistant
False Banana Plant
Ensete maurelii
5 - 6ft high & 4 - 5ft wide
sun to part shade, average

False Green Banana Plant
Ensete superbum
Grows 5-6 ft tallPansy Purple Rain, Winniepg, Manitoba, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center
bright green foliage
Full sun

False Banana Plant
Ensete glaucum
6-8 ft high
Bluish green leaves.
Full sun

Basjoo Banana Plant
Musa x ‘Basjoo’
very tough Banana Plant
8-10 ft high 4-5 ft wide
Full sun

Margarita Banana Plant
Musa x ‘Margarita’
Fast growing classic Banana look
Lime green foliage
6-8 ft high, part sun

Zebrina Banana Plant Canna Bird of Paradise, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, manitoba
Musa sumatrana 'Zebrina'
5 - 6ft high & 4 - 5ft wide
sun to part shade

Poquito Banana Plant
Musa x ‘Poquito’
3-4 ft high and 2-3ft wide
Bright green lush foliage
Part to full sun

Hybrid Begonia
18 - 20" high & 18 - 20“ wide
part sun – shade
Silver, purple and green variegation

Plum Paisley Begonia
Begonia ‘Plum Paisley’
12-15" high & 12-15” wide
part sun - shade
Deep variegated leaves with dark green, white to plum margins

Canna Bird of Paridise
5-6high & 2 - 3ft wide
sun to part shade
Blue green leaves, pink flowers

Australia Red Canna canna Erebus, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, manitoba
5-6ft high & 2 - 3ft wide
sun to part shade
Purple Reddish foliage, red flowers

Intrigue Canna
5-6 ft high & 2 - 3ft wide
sun to part shade
Narrow purple leaves, orange flowers

Erebus Canna
3-4 ft high & 2 - 3ft wide
sun to part shade
Green leaves, salmon pink flowers

Ermine Canna
3-4 ft high & 2 - 3ft wide
sun to part shade
Green leaves, pure white flowers

Canna Ra
5-6high & 2 - 3ft wide Kint Tut Grass, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center , Winnipeg, manitoba
sun to part shade
Green leaves, bright yellow flowers


Grasses

Red Star Palm Grass
Cordyline australis 'Red Star'
24 - 30" high & 15 - 18" side
sun to part shade, dry
Deer resistant

Burgundy Design a Line Palm Grass
Cordyline x ‘Design a line burgundy’
Burgundy foliage that forms a tight clump
2-3 ft high
Part to full sun

Baby Tut Graceful Grass
Cyperus involucratus 'Baby Tut'
18 - 24" high & 14 - 20" wideFireworks Fountain Grass, Jensen Nurserya nd Garden Center, Winnipeg, Manitoba
sun to part shade
Can be used in ponds

King Tut Graceful Grass
Cyperus papyrus 'King Tut'
48 - 72" high & 36 - 48" wide
sun to part shade
Can be used in ponds

Fireworks Fountain Grass
18-24” high & side
Sun or part shade

Princess Fountain Grass
Pennisetum x ‘Princess’
Beautiful purple color of the Purple Fountain Grass 
but has a wider leave to give a more textured look.
Vigorous growing to 3 ft
New zEALAND fLAX, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, manitoba
Vertigo Millet
Pennisetum x ‘Vertigo’
Thicker blade, better dark purple coloring.
3-4 ft high Full sun

Toffee Twist Grass
Carex flagellifera
18 - 24" high & 15 - 18" wide
sun to part shade

Assorted
Bronze New Zealand Flax
Phormium tenax atropurpureum
Very tough
Grows 4-5ft high
Full sun, deer resistant

Senorita Rosalita Cleome
Cleome Hybrid Regal Geranium baroness, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, Manitoba,
24 - 36" high & 14 - 20“ wide
sun to part shade
Deer Resistant, Butterflies

Gaura
15 - 18" high & 12 - 15“wide
sun to part shade

Coleus
Solenostemon scutellarioides
18 - 24" high & 12 - 15" wide
sun to shade
Deer Resistant, hummingbird

Coleus Marooned
24-36 inchesColeus EI brighto, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Sun or Shade

Keystone Copper Coleus
24-36 inches
Sun or Shade

El Brighto Coleus
24-36 inches
Sun or Shade

Merlin’s Magic  Coleus
10-12” high
Sun or shade

Wasabi Coleus
24-30 inches
Sun or Shade
/begonia plum paisle., jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Sun Impatiens
Sun or Shade, hot dry, windy areas, will take frost
- 24-36” high and 18-24” spread
Compact Coral
Compact Magenta
Compact Orange
Compact Pink Blush

Garnet Lace Ipomoea
6-8” high and spreads to 36”
Bronze red foliage

Sweet Carolyn Bewitched Ipomoea
6-8” high and trails to 24”
Dark purple foliage

Picasso in Pink Supertunia
More compact then Pretty much Picasso
10-12” high and trails 36”coolwave pansy, jensen nursery andgarden center, winnipeg, manitoba

Pink Lemonade Suncatcher Petunia
Soft yellow petunia with pink tones
Excellent on containers

Inspired by the wave petunia line
Grows 8-10” high but spreads to 2ft
Excellent in baskets

Violet Wing Pansy

Purple Rain Pansy Cool Wave
Dark purple, cascading pansy
Will trail 18-24”

Asparagus Fern
Vigorous growing from 2-3 ft long
Excellent in mixed containers
Full to part sun

Luna Red Hibiscus
Shrub like, grows 2-3 ft high
Deep red flowers all summer/MinalobataJungleQueen, Jensen Nursery and Garden Center, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Full sun, tolerates a wet area

Mina Jungle Queen
Full sun vine
Yellow and red flowers
vigorous

Solanum Jasminoides White
Potato Vine
Fragrant white flowers, very vigorous, need support
Part sun

Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:10 PM 0 Comments

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Starting Seeds Indoors


Seeding both indoors and out can be challenging at the best of times, but, with a few tricks and tips, you can be most successful!

If you are starting some of your vegetable or flower seeds indoors, it is not necessary to have an expensive “Grow Light” set-up.  An ordinary cool white Fluorescent light bulb will do (or a sunny spot in the house}.  The secret is to keep your seeds and seedlings as close to the light as possible.  This will give you a firm and stocky seedling rather than a spindly one that looks like it has been stretched and is reaching for the light.  If you are using Fluorescent bulbs, give them about 15 hours a day under the bulbs.  A sunny window will also work well, but, be careful not to let the seeds dry out. Keeping your seeds too moist or too dry will deter germination.  Drop into the garden centre for a “soil-less” mix growing medium that mainly consists of peat moss, vermiculite and perlite.  It is light, fluffy and easy to work with.  It also helps the seedlings form an excellent root system for transplanting.  The first thing to do is pre-moisten the mix with hot water and then fill your container with soil.  I often use a plastic muffin container or strawberry container.  They have a lid attached so it creates a little greenhouse – perfect for germinating seeds. There are many different containers you can use for planting seeds.  An ordinary margarine or other container will do, just cover the top with a saran wrap after planting or put into a light see through plastic bag like you would put fruit and vegetables in when you buy from a food store, to create the same “greenhouse” effect.  Other seeds don’t like to be transplanted so sow them directly into little peat pots so they can be planted directly into the soil.  Some seeds are like dust (like Begonia seed), so just tap them onto the soil from your hand.  Gently firm the soil and then cover.  I remember a number of years ago planting Lisianthus seed for the first time with a friend.  We got the giggles and at the end of the planting, we weren’t sure if we had scattered the seed in the container or on the floor!
You can also save toilet paper rolls and by making about 3 or 4 one inch slits from the bottom, you can turn them into little containers for planting out.  They will break down in the moist soil, just as the peat pots do, and will allow the roots to grow through without problem. Some plants such as cucumber, celosia and sweet peas don’t like to be transplanted so sow them directly into the peat pots.  Other plants such as alyssum and lobelia can be grown in rows without being transplanted to larger containers. Simply pull them apart in little bunches and plant them outside in the soil or into containers when you are ready to plant.
Mix a product called “No-Damp in a spray bottle and spray on top of the seeded containers.  It is an anti-fungus and will prevent your seedlings from falling over after they have germinated. Some seeds germinate best in light and others best in darkness. If your seeds prefer darkness, cover the container loosely with tin foil or even some newspaper to keep the light out.  Other seeds germinate best when merely pressed into the top of the soil so they are exposed to light. Make note of this when you are reading about different plant varieties.
Some seeds will germinate better and faster with a little bottom heat. A few warm spots in the house would be in an oven with the light on; on top of a Fluorescent fixture on a light stand or beside a heat register.
Once you have had some success in germinating seeds indoors, you will wonder why you haven’t tried it before.
If you have some seeds that have been collecting dust around your house for years and you are wondering if they are still viable, place your seeds into a jar and half-fill the jar with warm water.  The seeds that float to the top are not good.  Another way to test seed is to take some of the seeds and put into a wet paper towel and put into a sealed plastic bag.  If they are good for planting, they will be sprouting in no time!
Most vegetables, except for the root crops (beets, carrots potatoes and parsnips), can be started inside for earlier crops.  Vegetables such as peppers, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, pumpkins, melons, leeks and Spanish onions should be started indoors early to insure you will have crops later.  Corn needs heat to germinate so if you start seeds indoors in small peat pots a few weeks before planting outdoors, you will get a great jump on an early crop. You will also have much earlier Lettuce if you start seeds indoors and just a tip – Lettuce likes it cool so plant the seedlings outside early.  They can endure a lot of cold!
Drop into our Garden Centre and pick up a few packages of seeds to try!  Growing seeds indoors is a lot of fun!

Stay tuned next time to find out what to do once your seedlings
 Arlene Wheeler
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:00 AM 0 Comments

Friday, December 14, 2012

Twas the Month Before Christmas!

Twas the Month Before Christmas by Arlene Wheeler

Twas the month before Christmas and all through the Greenhouse
The staff was a-stirring, even our mouse.
The swags were all hung in the Greenhouse with care,
We knew that our customers soon would be there.

The children were excited to see all the trees
While visions of Santa tickled them with glee.
And Tammy in her Santa hat and Susan in her boots
Were dreaming of the day that they’d be thinking of roots!!!

Tammy, Susan and the staff at Jensen’s are keeping busy right now hanging and delivering the Christmas trees, creating wonderful Christmas centerpieces, indoor and outdoor containers, swags and wreaths for all of our customers.  We offer free delivery of our Christmas trees all across the city and surrounding areas, you can’t beat that!  There is Balsam Fir for the people that are looking for the sweet evergreen smell of Christmas and Frasier Fir or Nordman Fir for others that are looking for a tree that will last past New Years.  We also offer Scotch Pine, White Pine, Canaan Fir, Douglas Fir and Manitoba Spruce.  Manitoba Tips, 3 – 5 feet are also available for only $10.00!  Bring in your Christmas tree stand (or if you need a stand, we have high quality stands for sale), and we will cut your tree and put it in the stand for you.  If you are not able to come out, give us a call or send us an email to let us know what kind of tree you would like and we will deliver it for free and set it up for you!  Ask us for a fresh cut if you are planning on putting up the tree upon delivery or soon after. Then, water, water, water, never let the water go below the cut as it will dry, the tree will be unable to take up water and your needles will soon be dropping.  The tree will be very thirsty for the first few days but will then settle down. A Christmas tree bag is also provided with each tree to provide for easy, no mess removal after the Christmas season.  Put the used tree out in the yard for the birds to enjoy!
We accept donations and Blue boxes for Winnipeg Harvest as well as donations of pennies for “Pennies from Heaven”.  These donations can be picked up when we deliver your tree. 
We also carry fresh wreaths, boughs, branches and garland to decorate your home as well as Christmas craft supplies, Christmas décor and of course, great gifts for the gardener or bird lover in your house.  Drop in to say hello and enjoy the wonders of the Christmas Season!

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish everybody a very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy and Peaceful 2013!
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 9:12 AM 0 Comments

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Arlene's Lasagna Gardening Tips

Arlene’s Lasagna Gardening Tips

This is the time of year to take advantage of all the Carbon sources around to create a vegetable garden or flower bed without having to break your back doing it. It’s easy – no digging or tilling!  You’ll also be able to use all the compostable items from your yard and kitchen   NO meat or dairy please!!!
Lasagna gardening or sheet composting is an organic gardening method that results in fluffy, rich soil, with very little work. You are going to build a garden by layering nitrogen and carbon sources, similar to creating Lasagna.

Nitrogen sources:  grass clippings used coffee grounds
(Greens) used tea leaves or bags fruit & vegetable scraps
fresh weeds (no seeds) blood meal
alfalfa pellets composted manures

Carbon sources: leaves sawdust
(Browns) corn stalks (cut up) pine needles
peat moss straw
wood chips newspaper
cardboard shredded bark
dryer lint

To create a garden or flower bed, mow the grass or other vegetation as short as possible.  Loosen the soil underneath with a spading fork.  Remove the weeds.  Cover the area with 4 – 6 overlapping layers of newspaper or cardboard.  Wet the area thoroughly. Fill in the area with layers of Nitrogen materials (Greens) and Carbon materials (Browns), ending with Browns, to a minimum of about 18 inches in height. Ending with a Carbon layer discourages flies from laying eggs in the nitrogen, such as the kitchen scraps and composted manure, however, you will be creating an attractive playground for the earthworms to loosen up the soil as they tunnel through it.  To speed up the composting process, sprinkle the layers with a Compost Accelerator, as there is little or no heat reaction from the microorganisms to speed the process along. Cover with about 4 – 6 inches of a 4-way garden mix. By the time spring rolls around, the garden will be ready for planting.  The layers will have decomposed and it will look and smell like fresh earth. There will be no need for fertilizer next year!!!
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 4:01 PM 0 Comments

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

ARLENE’S TIPS ON FORCING BULBS INDOORS



Brighten up the indoors this winter by trying your hand at forcing some spring bulbs.  It’s easy to do.  The term forcing refers to inducing a plant to produce its shoot, leaf and flower, out of its natural environment and ahead of its natural schedule. When we force bulbs indoors, we mimic the same conditions that the bulbs would experience when grown outdoors.  Paperwhite Narcissus, which are fragrant, and Amaryllis are two bulbs that don’t need chilling as they are native to warm climates, however, bulbs such as Tulips, Daffodils, Scilla, Crocus, Muscari, Chionodoxa and Hyacinths need to be chilled. Both types are handled in the same way, although the forcing period may vary slightly.

Here are some tips:
1. Choose firm, non-marked, high quality bulbs.
2. Look for cultivars that do not grow too tall.
3. Use clean containers, keeping in mind that clay pots tend to dry faster.  If using clay, soak the pot for several hours to saturate the pores.  Bulbs look best in a shallow, wide container that’s approximately 4 – 6 inches deep.
4. Bulbs need moisture and also perfect drainage to grow successfully.  A mix of equal parts of peat moss, potting soil, sand and vermiculite or perlite is best; however, they can also be grown in a soil less mix combined with either part perlite or vermiculite. Hyacinths, Crocus and Narcissus can also be forced in water. Special clear glasses are used for forcing.  The bulb is placed in the upper portion and water in the bottom, just to cover the basal plate.  Paperwhites can also be grown in a shallow container of water filled with pebbles.  Secure the bulb in the pebbles deeply enough so that the basal plate is in touch with the water. Keep the container in a cool, dark room (preferably around 10 degrees C. or under) for a period of 4 – 8 weeks until the root system has developed and the top elongates. Use something like a black garbage bag to place loosely over top of the container if the spot you have chosen is not in complete darkness.  After the cool, dark period, place the container in a bright window and it will soon come into bloom. Each bulb will send up several flower blossoms.


5. If planting bulbs in a soil mixture, fill your container to about ½ to ¾ full of the potting mixture.  Moisten the soil.  Plant the bulbs close together, without touching and with pointed ends up, in a container partially covered with soil.  After planting, cover with soil, leaving the tips exposed and leaving about a ½ inch of space at the top of the container so it can be easily watered.  Never bury the bulbs.  If you are planting tulips, plant the flat side of the tulip bulb closest to the rim of your container. The largest leaf will always emerge and grow on the flat side, producing a more desirable look.
6. Water thoroughly.
7. After planting, the bulbs must be given a cold treatment, in darkness, preferably under 10 degrees C. for a minimum of 12 – 13 weeks. Don’t allow the bulbs to freeze as they will turn to mush. Most bulbs require a period of 16 – 18 weeks of cold before the flower is fully formed.  If you cut the cooling time short, the flowers may emerge but they will probably be stunted and deformed. The fridge, a cool pantry or an unheated basement are some great spots to keep them during the cool period.
8. Mark your calendar to remind yourself when the container can be removed from the dark and cool.
9. After the chill, gradually expose them to light and warmth.  Start them off in the coolest part or your house in indirect sunlight.  Exposing them to warm temperatures too quickly will cause the blooms to emerge too fast and they will fail before they ever open.  When shoots are about 3 – 5 inches high, move the container to a bright, sunny window.  When the buds start to show colour, move them to indirect light again to prolong the bloom time. At night, move them back into the cool, if possible, as warmer temperatures will result in rapid growth.
10. After the bloom has finished, discard Paperwhites, Hyacinths, Tulips and Crocus as they normally will never likely flower satisfactorily again.  Other bulbs can be planted out in the garden but may take a number of years to re-bloom.


If you follow these tips, you will be able to enjoy fragrant blooms and colour all winter long!

Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:05 PM 0 Comments

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Seeding Your Lawn and Laying Sod by Arlene

Arlene’s Tips on Seeding Your Lawn and Laying Sod

Fall time is an optimum time for laying sod or seeding your lawn as the weather is not too hot, precipitation is prevalent and the conditions are ideal for establishing turf.

The fall is the best time to over-seed your lawn as well, so as in the spring, the new grass will help choke out any weeds.

If you are seeding a new lawn or laying sod, as in everything else in the garden, preparation is the key. Prepare the ground.
TIP - In our clay soil, work in some organic matter such as peat moss. Do not add sand as it will pack harder and become like concrete.
Slope the soil away from the house. Remove rocks, weeds and any other debris that could prevent good contact with the soil. Till to a depth of 4 – 6 inches and insure all big clumps are broken up. You may want to add a good quality top soil, 3-way mix or just plain peat moss.
TIP - If you are using peat moss, mix it in a large muck bucket with water to prevent it from blowing away to your neighbours before applying it to the lawn.
Rake the soil to an even level. Water the soil, purchase a good quality grass seed and apply it according to directions. Push a lawn roller over the seed or tamp it down to help it make better contact with the soil. Unless it makes contact with the soil, it will not germinate. Keep it moist but not drenched and don’t water it so heavily, the seed washes away. Don’t let the seed dry out! The seed needs soil, water, warm temperature and nutrients to germinate.

The same preparation as above is needed if you are laying sod.
TIP - If you are unable to lay the sod as soon as it is delivered, lay the sod pieces out in a shady area and do not leave the sod stacked in piles.
Start laying the sod against a straight edge like a sidewalk or driveway and lay the sod so the rows are perpendicular to your house. Unroll the first piece of sod, keeping it tight against the straight edge as you go. Butt the second piece tightly against the first, without stretching either piece and keep in mind that sod pieces will shrink as they dry out. Start the second row with a partial piece of sod as the seams between the end of one strip and the beginning of the next should be offset like brickwork. After completion, use a roller to compress the sod slightly to help the roots make contact with the soil.
TIP – Don’t let the sod dry out. Begin watering the sod within about thirty minutes after installing to encourage rooting and preventing it from drying out.
Keep the sod moist after installation but don’t soak the area. Water in the morning, if possible, so the grass has a chance to dry before nightfall. Leaving grass wet overnight, encourages disease. Newly laid sod requires about 1 inch of water every 2 – 3 days, depending on the soil temperature and rainfall. Once established, 1 inch of water every 4 – 7 days is sufficient. Allow the grass to grow for a couple of weeks and then mow to about 2 inches. Never remove over 1/3 of the leaf blade when mowing.
TIP – Over time, decrease watering to encourage deeper root growth.
Try to keep children and pets off the area until your new lawn is established and until after the second mowing.
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 8:06 AM 1 Comments

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Grass is always Greener...



So, let’s keep talking about naturally caring for your lawn.  You may be envious about that “golf course look” grass that your neighbor has, but it comes at a price – both personally and environmentally.  Not only do many lawns use far too many fertilizer-pesticide combinations (the reason many governments have stepped in across Canada to ban ‘weed and feed’ products), but the personal time that you must commit to tending that synthetically created lawn is tremendous; and let us not forget about your water bill in a drought.  So why don’t we use Mother Nature to help us maintain and refurbish our existing lawn – and that includes beneficial fungus.

You have probably heard about the Myke brand product and our five year warranty with trees and shrubs.  Well, there is also a Myke product that, when used properly, can reduce watering needs, promote faster establishment of the mineral sod that we sell (using peat-based sod is risky), and increase drought tolerance (www.usemyke.com/mycorise/gardening/lawn/MykeTurf/MykeTurf.htm).  Remember, similar to their other products, MYKE® TURF contains mycorrhizae that “...form a close symbiotic relationship with plant roots.... However, in most soils that have been disturbed by residential construction [or] applications of fertilizers containing pesticides and other chemical products, the mycorrhizae content has considerably diminished, and has become insufficient to significantly enhance plant growth.... MYKE® TURF uses a natural heavy granular carrier that allows easy application for lawn care”.

So, as part of responsible landscaping and yard care, why don’t you try out a natural way to continue to establish and maintain your turf.  But remember, it should not be all about turf in your landscape.  A balance between your grass and constructed islands, curvilinear beds and ‘rooms’ for trees, shrubs, and perennials is how you make that urban oasis.  You can visit Jensen’s and talk to our knowledgeable staff about this aesthetic balancing act.  Search our blog archive for more lawn and garden design ideas.

By Bill Dowie
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 2:33 PM 0 Comments

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

New Organic Products - Good for the enviroment and for your yard!

When thinking of organic gardening supplements I didn't think they were anywhere near as good as a regular fertilizer. Oh was I wrong!

It's not just about how much nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium it contains. Organic fertilizers have the ability to provide those nutrients but also to allow the condition of the soil to be more beneficial to plants. Microorganisms that are already in the soil will be happier!

Here are some great new organic products to try!

Granular Neem
- helps in improving organic matter and physical properties  in soil
- contains 1.5% phosphorus, 1.5% potassium and .7% calcium

Humik
- conditions soil for more vigorous growth and improved mutrient uptake
- contains nitogen, phosphorus, potassium, copper, calcium, boron, iron, magnesium, and zinc
- promotes beneficial microbial activity in soil

Kelp Boost

- soluble potash 5.0%
- brings vigor and boosts all stages of growth
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 11:42 AM 0 Comments

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Joy of Roses

“A rose by any other name would smell as sweet...”

So, we’re going to talk about roses now.  Those beautiful, romantic, and oft sought after flowering shrubs for your yard and garden.  Those plants are so admired, that the Canadian government started breeding a “Parkland Series” rose going all the way back to 1962.  The “Explorer Series” and “Artist Series” are also available at Jensen’s.  The nice thing about these Canadian developed and bred roses is that they are on their own root system – they are not ‘grafted’ like the David Austin’s (though beautiful, are a lot more work to put to bed for the winter).

Although our hardy roses are more disease resistant than other cultivars, they still may be stressed by fungal issues, especially given all that early June cool rainy weather.  Therefore, here are a few tips to help ease your rose to fight off some problems:

Proactively use a slow release fertilizer such as Myke’s 5-3-8 rose food.  Remember that the three numbers represent nitrogen (green growth), phosphorus (roots and blooms), and potassium (general vigour); so you can see that this product ups the ante for disease resistance with a high last number.  It also is chock full of organic matter as its filler, rather than synthetic material, and is approved for organic production.  One box is good for twenty average sized rose bushes.

Reactively, you could use a natural-material garden fungicide to fight off black spot, rust, and powdery mildew.  Safer’s ‘Defender’ uses a the good old elemental sulphur as the basis for its spray solution.  Remember, your other plants will also benefit from this product if they succumb to some fungal diseases.

So, if you want to add a little romance to your yard, and have rich well drained soil that receives at least six hours of sun, then come visit us for a rose plant or three – they are available in various sizes, and forms, (and even coloured foliage).   See you soon!

Bill Dowie
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 5:24 PM 0 Comments

Monday, June 11, 2012

Living Screens

How to make screens for privacy and beauty...

Whether you are in a new development, or an established neighborhood, everybody needs something to look at other than blank house walls, wide spans of fence, and apartment buildings.  The answer is a ‘screening strategy’.

Proper screens borrow from the planting strategies to minimize wind and noise on farms and busy city streets respectively.  There are many plants that can serve this purpose here at the nursery.  For instance, Preston lilacs that are non-suckering can be planted very close to fences and trained to become mini-trees creating a beautiful ‘lollipop’ form – especially when in full bloom.  This also eliminates any risk of a grafted form failing during an especially harsh winter.  They can reach heights between 5 and 12 feet tall.

If you need tall accents that will shroud large structures from your background view, then the tried and true Swedish aspen is still quite useful.  This can reach heights of 60’, yet stay very narrow, assuming that you ‘limb it up’ to a height that one can walk under.  It does not sucker like its cousin the poplar. Recently we wrote another blog on urban trees – so see those recommendations if you would like a wider crown in an urban tree that will be only 20-25’ in height.

Another great screening plant that will turn red and orange in the fall are both the amur maple, in shrub form, as well as leaving a Cotoneaster to grow upright and natural (rather than trimming it as a hedge).  If you would like flowers and berries, then the elder (Sambucus genus) offers some nice forms that can be understory medium shrubs that will punctuate your beautifully well built privacy fence.  If you need privacy and defence (thorns), then a wilder Caragana hedge can solve the planting issue of poor soil – it fixes its own nitrogen to self-fertilize.

Even large perennials and annuals that reach up to four feet tall (or more) can offer some privacy if you are trying to hide an area on a site-line that is not especially attractive (shed, chain link fence, pool filters, etc.).  Fleeceflower, goatsbeard, Ligularia c.v., sunflowers, delphiniums, and hollyhocks are all useful plants that will ‘elbow’ their way into taller gaps that need filling.

Come and visit us for all your screening needs; blank slates or older landscapes all can use some taller plants to create that private urban oasis you always wanted.
 Bill Dowie
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 4:17 PM 0 Comments

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Hydrangeas for sale!!

Jensen Nursery has those Hydrangeas you have been thinking about...
You must have seen those shrubby plants with huge flower structures – some the size of a small child’s head; or you always wondered where that friend of yours got that beautiful dried flower arrangement.  Look no further than besides Jensen’s main building – it’s the Hydrangea.
Remember that great article on Hydrangeas in the Winnipeg Free Press back in the early spring?  (http://homes.winnipegfreepress.com/winnipeg-real-estate-articles/renovation-design/GARDENING-Beautiful-bloomers/id-2733/)
Colleen Zacharias astutely summarized that all Hydrangeas are not created equal.  Some are needing a strategic trim in the spring to flower (Hydrangea arborescens c.v.), while others can take a decapitation almost to the ground (Hydrangea paniculata c.v.).  And remember:  some of this pruning may be done by your furry little garden friend, the rabbit – so be mindful of the type you want and the effort of protection (both by herbivores and deep cold snaps) that you are willing to provide.
Jensen’s still has the following varieties, so be sure to go to the website to check-out these beauties (http://plants.jensennursery.com/11050012):

H. Paniculata
Bombshell
Fire and Ice
Little Lamb (smaller flowers for shadier spaces)
Little Lime
Pee Gee (the grandmother of all the P.g.s)
Pinky Winky
Quick Fire

H. arborescens

Annabelle
Bella Anna
Incrediball
Invincibelle Spirit (the Breast Cancer support)
Vanilla Strawberry


Bill Dowie

Posted by Tammy Jensen at 9:10 PM 0 Comments

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Urban Tree Issues by Bill Dowie

Jensen Nursery can solve your urban tree issues...

If you think you do not have enough room in your smaller urban space for trees, think again.  There are a number of workhorse trees 
that Jensen's has in stock that can you can shoe horn in a corner or start creating that living screen that you always wanted (you 
know, that new neighbor just built a raised deck, and now sees your every move!).

Going into June Jensen's will be looking at what else to order for you collectors, but in the meantime here are four great trees of 
different genus (dimension are average height and width):

Malus - Thunderchild Rosybloom are 16x13 feet with a nice vasing growth habit that can act as a great screen in a medium space; the 
new Gladiator is even narrower at 10' wide; of course, there are the old standbys of Radiant, Fushia Girl, and Pink Spires - all will

not exceed a two story house.  Learn about some pruning techniques to shape your small trees in March of every year, and a way you 
go.

Syringa - The Ivory Silk Tree Lilac is on its own trunk and is a true tree form (not the lollipop standard).  It will bloom in later 
June after all your shrub forms have lost their flowers, and is a nice 23x16 feet with off-white flowers and dense leaf and branch 
structure.

Prunus - The Amur Cherry, along with the purple foliage of a Rosybloom, will be a great tag team to replace all those dying Schubert 
Chokecherries with Black Knot.  At 30x23, it is the larger of the small urban trees, will grow a nice umbrella canopy if you let it -

though a multi-trunk form is a nice addition - and has gold-brown-bronze exfoliating bark.  A super tree for winter interest.  The 
berries will attract migrating birds in the fall, when the leaves blaze in reds, oranges, and purples.

Bill Dowie

Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:44 PM 1 Comments

Monday, July 04, 2011

Freckles, Religious Radish and Texas Parking Lot by Arlene Wheeler

“What does that have to do with plants and gardening”?, you say.

I had the opportunity on Saturday to take a walk through the beautiful English Gardens at Assiniboine Park. If you haven’t done so in a while, now is the time! Take a look at some of the plants they have grouped together and how fantastic they look. Some of the combinations are really pleasing to the eye. It will give you some great ideas for your planters and gardens for next year. Take a pen and paper to make some notes. The bright orange poppies planted in front of the white cascading blooms of the Bridal Wreath Spirea are always one of my favourite combinations and the peonies in front of the Conservatory are breathtaking. The staff at the park has given us an amazing display of beauty.
Freckles, Religious Radish and Texas Parking Lot are actually names of different varieties of Coleus. Freckles, with its rusty orange leaves splashed with a gold/yellow is planted with a beautiful orange impatiens and next to a new colour of impatiens that is light peach with a bright orange splash on each petal. What a beautiful combination! In another area they had interspersed Religious Radish Coleus, a Coleus with a great touch of a raspberry colour, together with a variegated Purple Fountain Grass (Pennisetum X Advena) called Fireworks. Another interesting and beautiful combination! In the Leo Mol garden, you will find the Texas Lot Parking Lot Coleus. What interesting names for some great new Coleus! Many of the newer varieties of Coleus tolerate a lot of sun, not like the older varieties. Coleus can be grown indoors as a houseplant through the winter and you will be able to start many plants from one mature Coleus plant. At Jensen’s, we still have some beautiful containers with some great looking Coleus that you can grow on for many months to come and at the end of the season, you can take them in and enjoy them indoors through the winter!
If we want peace, we have to be peaceful, if we want Paradise, we have to grow it!!!
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:00 AM 1 Comments

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

What a great day!

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Well I survived giving my first seminar! In fact I had a great time! Thanks to everyone who came out to the garden center and helped make our seminars a success! I will be working on setting up more seminars soon! Any suggestions on what you would like to see would be great! I showed some of the new annual and perennial introductions! In fact everyone got to actually touch, feel, and smell the plants as I passed them around! The annuals are on my garden tip page if you want to have a peek at them! Bill Dowie who is Ecological Landscaping Consultant at Ecoplicity Sustanable Urban Design gave 2 seminars on how to really get to know your yard, and be a successful gardener! I have attached a PDF of Bill's first seminar. Part two can be found on my previous blog! Bill will be helping us out at the garden center in May and June working as a in house designer. Details to follow! I will tell you two things though - it's free, and he has some great ideas!
Well that is all I have time to talk about today! I will be posting my gargoyles, dragon, and fairies blog next. It's about some new giftware I have received and my parents unfortunate reaction to it! Tammy Jensen


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Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:00 AM 1 Comments