Gardening Tips for the Week of July 19-26

Free Workshop on Thursday, July 23:” Insects & Diseases of Vegetable Gardens” .  Presented by Jim Janks, Gunnison County Advanced Master Gardener

Are your onions looking ugly?  Tomatoes growing terribly?  Come learn about the common insects and diseases that often perplex Gunnison County vegetable gardeners, and come away with knowledge that is sure to help you increase the health and productivity of your vegetable garden plants.

This workshop will take place from Noon-1PM at the Fred Field Western Heritage Center (275 South Spruce St.) in Gunnison.  For more information, call 641-1260.

Water Conservation in the Vegetable Garden

In vegetable production, an adequate supply of water during the growing season is directly related to produce quality and yields.  Unlike bluegrass and other landscape plants, vegetables can’t go dormant when the water supply is inadequate. However, there are several techniques that will significantly reduce the water requirements of the home vegetable garden.  This CSU Extension Garden Notes publication gives tips on mulching, soil amendment, watering techniques and recognizing the critical watering periods for various vegetables in order to reduce water use in the vegetable garden: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/716.pdf

How much should I water my lawn this week? 

For most homeowners, attention to irrigation efficiency has the greatest potential for water conservation.  In the typical home yard, extra attention to irrigation system design, maintenance, and management could reduce water use by 20-50%!  Using locally calculated evapo-transpiration (ET) rates to determine how much water to apply to your lawn will help you conserve water.  

The evapotranspiration rate for the seven day period between July 12-18 was 1.50 inches, calculated for cool season turfgrass in Gunnison.  During this time period, Gunnison received .02 inches of precipitation.  So, watering 1.48 inches will replace the amount of moisture that has been lost through plant transpiration and evaporation from soil during the past week and needs to be replaced to maintain a healthy lawn. 

This is meant to be a general guide to determining your lawn’s irrigation needs.  Please note that micro-climates in your yard and various grass species in your lawn will have considerable effect on your lawn’s actual water needs, so be sure to check soil moisture to a depth of 4-8” with a garden trowel or screwdriver to determine if the root zone of your grass is sufficiently moist.

How do I figure out how long to water my lawn in order to apply the correct amount of water?  Visit this link: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/264-Minute2Inch.html

For more about conserving water through efficient irrigation scheduling, visit: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/265-Scheduling.html

For assistance in establishing an efficient irrigation schedule for your lawn, contact the CSU Extension Office in Gunnison County at 641-1260.

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July 20, 2009 at 5:40 pm Leave a comment

Gardening Tips for the Week of July 12-18

Free Workshop on Thursday, July 23:” Insects & Diseases of Vegetable Gardens” 

 Are your onions looking ugly?  Tomatoes growing terribly?  Come learn about the common insects and diseases that often perplex Gunnison County vegetable gardeners, and come away with knowledge that is sure to help you increase the health and productivity of your vegetable garden plants.  This workshop will be presented by Jim Janks, Gunnison County Advanced Master Gardener.

 This workshop will take place from Noon-1PM at the Fred Field Western Heritage Center (275 South Spruce St.) in Gunnison.  For more information, call 641-1260.

 

Spider Mites

The onset of hot summer weather provides the perfect conditions for spider mites, which become an increasingly common insect pest in the Gunnison Valley at this time of year.  Drought-stressed plants in hot, dry areas are especially prone to outbreaks of spider mites, which cause flecking, discoloration (bronzing or graying) and scorching of leaves.  Though individual spider mites are extremely small and often difficult to see with the unaided eye, the webbing they produce can sometimes be spotted on the leaves of affected plants.  This CSU Extension Fact Sheet gives more information about spider mites, including tips for preventing and controlling outbreaks: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05507.html

 

How much should I water my lawn this week? 

For most homeowners, attention to irrigation efficiency has the greatest potential for water conservation.  In the typical home yard, extra attention to irrigation system design, maintenance, and management could reduce water use by 20-50%!  Using locally calculated evapo-transpiration (ET) rates to determine how much water to apply to your lawn will help you conserve water. 

The evapotranspiration rate for the seven day period between July 5-11 was 1.55 inches, calculated for cool season turfgrass in Gunnison.  During this time period, Gunnison received .1 inches of precipitation.  So, watering 1.45 inches will replace the amount of moisture that has been lost through plant transpiration and evaporation from soil during the past week and needs to be replaced to maintain a healthy lawn. 

This is meant to be a general guide to determining your lawn’s irrigation needs.  Please note that micro-climates in your yard and various grass species in your lawn will have considerable effect on your lawn’s actual water needs, so be sure to check soil moisture to a depth of 4-8” with a garden trowel or screwdriver to determine if the root zone of your grass is sufficiently moist.

How do I figure out how long to water my lawn in order to apply the correct amount of water?  Visit this link: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/264-Minute2Inch.html

For more about conserving water through efficient irrigation scheduling, visit: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/265-Scheduling.html

For assistance in establishing an efficient irrigation schedule for your lawn, contact the CSU Extension Office in Gunnison County at 641-1260.

July 14, 2009 at 10:21 pm Leave a comment

Gardening Tips for the Week of July 5-11

Aphids

As predicted by Whitney Cranshaw, CSU Extension entomologist, aphids have been widespread on shade trees and ornamental plants throughout the Gunnison Valley this spring and summer.  There are over 350 species of aphids known to occur in Colorado, so it may seem like it would be difficult to determine which species of aphid is affecting your plant.  However, the fact that many species of aphids are host-specific makes it somewhat easier to determine what species of aphids you may have in your garden.  Aphids on your lupines?  Chances are good they are lupine aphids (Macrosiphum albifrons).  Are your honeysuckles crawling with the little critters?  The honeysuckle witches broom aphid (Hyadaphis tataricae) is frequently found in Gunnison County.  For more on aphids, their plant hosts and options for preventing them from doing too much damage in your garden see the following CSU Extension Fact Sheet: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05511.html

 

Aspen and Poplar Leaf Diseases

Recent cool, wet weather has created the perfect conditions for many fungal diseases to begin to occur on trees, particularly aspens and cottonwoods.  In order to reduce the occurrence of fungal diseases that commonly affect these and other members of the poplar family in Gunnison County, avoid irrigating in the evening or at night when water is likely to remain on leaves for a long period of time before evaporating.  For more on identifying and preventing fungal leaf spots that commonly affect aspens, cottonwoods and other poplars, read this CSU Extension Fact Sheet: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/garden/02920.html

 

How much should I water my lawn this week?   

For most homeowners, attention to irrigation efficiency has the greatest potential for water conservation.  In the typical home yard, extra attention to irrigation system design, maintenance, and management could reduce water use by 20-50%!  Using locally calculated evapo-transpiration (ET) rates to determine how much water to apply to your lawn will help you conserve water. 

The evapotranspiration rate for the seven day period between June 28-July 4 was 1.56 inches, calculated for cool season turfgrass in Gunnison.  During this time period, Gunnison received .21 inches of precipitation.  So, watering 1.35 inches will replace the amount of moisture that has been lost through plant transpiration and evaporation from soil during the past week and needs to be replaced to maintain a healthy lawn. 

This is meant to be a general guide to determining your lawn’s irrigation needs.  Please note that micro-climates in your yard and various grass species in your lawn will have considerable effect on your lawn’s actual water needs, so be sure to check soil moisture to a depth of 4-8” with a garden trowel or screwdriver to determine if the root zone of your grass is sufficiently moist.

 How do I figure out how long to water my lawn in order to apply the correct amount of water?  Visit this link: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/264-Minute2Inch.html

 For more about conserving water through efficient irrigation scheduling, visit: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/265-Scheduling.html

For assistance in establishing an efficient irrigation schedule for your lawn, contact the CSU Extension Office in Gunnison County at 641-1260.

July 6, 2009 at 7:27 pm Leave a comment

Gardening Tips for the Week of June 28-July 4

Nuisance Wasps and Bees

 Some people in Gunnison have reported seeing unusually large numbers of western yellowjackets in their gardens recently.  For some, these insects can be a nuisance, particularly given the fact that western yellowjackets are believed to be responsible for at least 90 percent of “bee stings” in Colorado.  Colonies of this insect will continue to grow in size as the summer progresses, so you may want to be on the lookout for any problem areas, particularly around garbage cans or anywhere food may be found, where yellowjacket traps may be useful in preventing “bee stings” as the summer progresses.  To learn more about nuisance bees and wasps and their control, read this CSU Extension Fact Sheet: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05525.html

 

Landscaping for Energy Conservation

As you are planning the layout and design of your gardens and landscapes, don’t forget to consider how your landscaping might contribute to helping keep your house cool during the hot summer months and warmer during the winter.  This CSU Extension Fact Sheet gives tips on planning your landscape with energy efficiency in mind: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/garden/07225.html

 

How much should I water my lawn this week? 

For most homeowners, attention to irrigation efficiency has the greatest potential for water conservation.  In the typical home yard, extra attention to irrigation system design, maintenance, and management could reduce water use by 20-50%!  Using locally calculated evapo-transpiration (ET) rates to determine how much water to apply to your lawn will help you conserve water. 

The evapotranspiration rate for the seven day period between June 21-27 was 1.43 inches, calculated for cool season turfgrass in Gunnison.  During this time period, Gunnison received .39 inches of precipitation.  So, watering just over 1 inch will replace the amount of moisture that has been lost through plant transpiration and evaporation from soil during the past week and needs to be replaced to maintain a healthy lawn. 

This is meant to be a general guide to determining your lawn’s irrigation needs.  Please note that micro-climates in your yard and various grass species in your lawn will have considerable effect on your lawn’s actual water needs, so be sure to check soil moisture to a depth of 4-8” with a garden trowel or screwdriver to determine if the root zone of your grass is sufficiently moist.

 How do I figure out how long to water my lawn in order to apply the correct amount of water?  Visit this link: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/264-Minute2Inch.html

 For more about conserving water through efficient irrigation scheduling, visit: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/265-Scheduling.html

For assistance in establishing an efficient irrigation schedule for your lawn, contact the CSU Extension Office in Gunnison County at 641-1260.

June 29, 2009 at 4:43 pm Leave a comment

Gardening Tips for the Week of June 21-27

Free Workshop this Thursday, June 25: “Edible Weeds and Native Plants of Gunnison County”.  Noon to 1PM at the Fred Field Western Heritage Center in Gunnison. 

 Sometimes you don’t need to be an avid gardener to harvest delicious food plants.  Many edible plants may already be growing wild in your own backyard!  Come learn about some of the edible weeds and native plants that grow in our area and pick up some tips on how to harvest and prepare them.  For more information, call the Extension Office at 641-1260.

How much should I water my lawn this week? 

For most homeowners, attention to irrigation efficiency has the greatest potential for water conservation.  In the typical home yard, extra attention to irrigation system design, maintenance, and management could reduce water use by 20-50%!  Using locally calculated evapo-transpiration (ET) rates to determine how much water to apply to your lawn will help you conserve water. 

The evapotranspiration rate for the seven day period between June 14-20 was 1.33 inches, calculated for cool season turfgrass in Gunnison.  During this time period, Gunnison received no measurable precipitation.  So, watering 1.33 inches will replace the amount of moisture that has been lost through plant transpiration and evaporation from soil during the past week and needs to be replaced to maintain a healthy lawn. 

 This is meant to be a general guide to determining your lawn’s irrigation needs.  Please note that micro-climates in your yard and various grass species in your lawn will have considerable effect on your lawn’s actual water needs, so be sure to check soil moisture to a depth of 4-8” with a garden trowel or screwdriver to determine if the root zone of your grass is sufficiently moist.

 How do I figure out how long to water my lawn in order to apply the correct amount of water?  Visit this link: ttp://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/264-Minute2Inch.html

For more about conserving water through efficient irrigation scheduling, visit: ttp://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/265-Scheduling.html

For assistance in establishing an efficient irrigation schedule for your lawn, contact the CSU Extension Office in Gunnison County at 641-1260. 

 Planting Wildflowers

 If the beautiful wildflowers currently blooming in the mountains, meadows and sagebrush shrublands in Gunnison County have inspired you to re-create a bit of our area’s beauty in your yard, you may find this CSU Extension Fact Sheet on wildflowers useful: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/garden/07233.html

June 23, 2009 at 10:10 pm Leave a comment

Gardening Tips for the Week of June 14-20

Is it legal to collect rainwater from my roof to use for watering my garden?

Collecting and using rainwater from roofs can be a great way for gardeners to conserve water while maintaining a beautiful landscape.  But does Colorado Water Law allow for rainwater harvesting?  Senate Bill 09-080, which was passed by the Colorado General Assembly and signed by  Governor Ritter during the 2009 legislative session, allows for collection and use of rainwater in landscapes and gardens by some landowners.  To learn more about whether you can legally collect rainwater to water your garden with read the details of this legislation at the following link: http://water.state.co.us/pubs/pdf/RainWaterBills.pdf

Powdery Mildew

When relative humidity remains consistently high, it is often common to find some leaves of lilacs, turfgrass, crabapples, roses and many other plants covered with a fine, grayish-white fungus called powdery mildew.  Particularly in shady, moist areas with limited air circulation, powdery mildew can become an unattractive and unwelcome guest on your garden plants. However, if you do notice powdery mildew becoming a problem in your garden, there are a number of simple steps that can be taken to alleviate the conditions that favor the growth of this fungus.   Read this CSU Extension Fact Sheet for more information: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/garden/02902.html

How much should I water my lawn this week? 

For most homeowners, attention to irrigation efficiency has the greatest potential for water conservation.  In the typical home yard, extra attention to irrigation system design, maintenance, and management could reduce water use by 20-50%!  Using locally calculated evapo-transpiration (ET) rates to determine how much water to apply to your lawn will help you conserve water. 

The evapotranspiration rate for the seven day period between June 7-13 was 1.25 inches, calculated for cool season turfgrass in Gunnison.  During this time period, Gunnison received .06 inches of precipitation.  So, watering 1.19 inch will replace the amount of moisture that has been lost through plant transpiration and evaporation from soil during the past week and needs to be replaced to maintain a healthy lawn. 

 This is meant to be a general guide to determining your lawn’s irrigation needs.  Please note that micro-climates in your yard and various grass species in your lawn will have considerable effect on your lawn’s actual water needs, so be sure to check soil moisture to a depth of 4-8” with a garden trowel or screwdriver to determine if the root zone of your grass is sufficiently moist.

 How do I figure out how long to water my lawn in order to apply the correct amount of water?  Visit this link:

http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/264-Minute2Inch.html

 For more about conserving water through efficient irrigation scheduling, visit:

http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/265-Scheduling.html

For assistance in establishing an efficient irrigation schedule for your lawn, contact the CSU Extension Office in Gunnison County at 641-1260.

June 15, 2009 at 8:25 pm Leave a comment

Gardening Tips for the Week of June 7-13

Will 2009 be a big year for aphids in Gunnison County?

 Relatively cool and wet conditions this spring in Gunnison County may be cause for some added vigilance in your garden during the next few weeks as aphid populations are expected to boom as a result of recent weather conditions.  CSU Entomologist Whitney Cranshaw shares some insights on this phenomenon:

 “Good moisture seems to do two things that can push spring aphid populations.  Probably most important is that it favors continued production of succulent new growth that many aphid species favor (particularly those that induce leaf curls).  Also, I suspect that the precipitation washes the honeydew that is produced, which can inhibit the natural enemies that use honeydew for supplementary food and to help locate their hosts/prey.

 The cool temperatures more clearly affect the natural enemies.  Although all insects are cold-blooded with development rate determined by temperature, the natural enemies tend to have a higher base temperature (lower threshold temperature for activity) than do the aphids.  Therefore, although development is slowed for both it is more slowed for the natural enemies; the aphid populations then increase at a more rapid rate.”

 The good news: aphid populations on plants can often be sufficiently controlled simply by spraying down affected foliage with a strong stream of water to knock them off of plants.   For information about aphids and their control, read this CSU Extension Fact Sheet: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05511.html

 How much should I water my lawn this week? 

For most homeowners, attention to irrigation efficiency has the greatest potential for water conservation.  In the typical home yard, extra attention to irrigation system design, maintenance, and management could reduce water use by 20-50%!  Using locally calculated evapo-transpiration (ET) rates to determine how much water to apply to your lawn will help you conserve water. 

The evapotranspiration rate for the seven day period between May 31 and June 6 was 1.30 inches, calculated for cool season turfgrass in Gunnison.  During this time period, Gunnison received .70 inches of precipitation.  So, watering .60 inch will replace the amount of moisture that has been lost through plant transpiration and evaporation from soil during the past week and needs to be replaced to maintain a healthy lawn. 

 This is meant to be a general guide to determining your lawn’s irrigation needs.  Please note that micro-climates in your yard and various grass species in your lawn will have considerable effect on your lawn’s actual water needs, so be sure to check soil moisture to a depth of 4-8” with a garden trowel or screwdriver to determine if the root zone of your grass is sufficiently moist.

 How do I figure out how long to water my lawn in order to apply the correct amount of water?  Visit this link: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/264-Minute2Inch.html

For more about conserving water through efficient irrigation scheduling, visit: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/mg/gardennotes/265-Scheduling.html

For assistance in establishing an efficient irrigation schedule for your lawn, contact the CSU Extension Office in Gunnison County at 641-1260. 

Weed Management 

Many of the most problematic weeds in Gunnison County are beginning to grow rapidly, and you may be wondering what you should do about invasive plants.  This CSU Extension Fact Sheet offers some general information on weed control and some information on a some of the most aggressive Colorado weeds: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/natres/03106.html

Call the CSU Extension Office in Gunnison at 641-1260 for weed identification and advice about the control of specific weeds that you may have on your property.

June 8, 2009 at 8:32 pm Leave a comment

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