With the sun shining and many plants blooming, May is a great time to get out in the garden. Keeping up with seasonal garden activities will help you keep your entire landscape looking its best year-round. While seasonal tasks will vary around the country, here are a few landscape tips for the month of May:
Water Smart: Depending on where you live in the country, water may be a big issue you for you in the landscape. It definitely is here in California. If you use an automated irrigation system, have you had it audited lately? If not, now is a good time to make sure your system is inspected for leaks or pressure problems. If you’re using drip irrigation, be sure to check all drip lines for clogs or leaks. As we head into the summer months be sure you know your area’s water restrictions. Proper irrigation is key to the health and beauty of your plants. The last thing you want to do is waste water in the landscape.
Weed: Spring weeds often come on strong. Keep on top of weeds by removing them and mowing regularly before weeds bloom. If you hand pull weeds, be sure to get them roots and all! Once they go to seed, they’ll spread throughout your landscape. Fresh weeds are great food for the compost bin.
Feed: Certain plants will benefit from fertilization this month, including citrus trees. If you didn’t apply an all-purpose fertilizer to lawns, landscape plants, established annuals and perennials in April, you should do so now.
Pests: May can bring with it a number of destructive pests in the garden. Be sure to keep an eye on plants for signs of damage or the insects themselves. Chewing caterpillars, white flies, grasshoppers and more could be munching on your favorite plants.
Plant: If you haven’t yet amended your beds with compost, now’s the time. Plant summer blooming annuals, perennials and summer bulbs. Be sure to mulch all new plantings to conserve landscape water.
Prune: Thin fruit on your fruit trees as needed. Prune away any shoots damaged by winter weather. Groom your succulent plants by removing any old damaged foliage and pruning away old blooms stalks.
- Shoestring Acacia, Acacia stenophylla
- Windmill Palm, Trachycarpus fortunei
- Mexican Fan Palm, Washingtonia Robusta
- Ponytail Palm, Beaucarnea recurvata (Nolina recurvata)
- Black Locust, Robinia ‘Purple Robe’
- Mimosa, Silk Tree, Albizia julibrissin
- Palo Verde, Cercidium ‘Desert Museum’
- African Sumac, Rhus lancea
- Bottle Tree, Kurrajong, Brachychiton populneus
- Silver Dollar Gum, Red Box, Eucalyptus polyanthus