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HORT THERAPY
Dear Readers:
HORT THERAPY is a weekly column where our team of professionals will answer your gardening questions.

Email us your garden questions at AskDIGIT@dig-itmag.com. We love a challenge.

Dear DIG IT!
I LIVE IN NORTHERN NJ. WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO PLANT GLAD BULBS? IS IT TOO LATE? WHEN IS THE LATEST THEY CAN BE PLANTED? ANY PLANTING TIPS AS FAR AS FERTILIZER, MANURE ETC WOULD BE APPRECIATED. WHAT ABOUT STORING THE BULBS? THANK YOU.

Dear Bobcat,
Plant gladiolus bulbs after the last hard frost - in northern New jersey that's May 15 to be safe. There are a couple recommendations given to DIG IT! about fertilizer -- 4-10-10 and 10-10-10. One grower ecommends putting diatomaceous earth in the planting holes to kill wire worms and also putting bonemeal there. Well-rotted manure should be fine.

Please check our article on gladiolus(Click Here) with lots of info about planting, storing, and also where to buy the best bulbs.

Thanks!

Dear DIG IT!
WE LIVE ON SOME ACREAGE IN COLORADO AND HAVE a lot OF ROCKS THAT WOULD POSSIBLY PREVENT US FROM GROWING TREES FOR B&B AND SOMEONE TOLD US THAT IT IS POSSIBLE TO USE ANOTHER METHOD WITH THE USE OF MAYBE A CONTAINER OR FABRIC THAT WE COULD GROW THEM IN AND THEN LATER DIG THEM UP IN THE CONTAINER TO SELL. IS THERE SUCH A THING? WHAT IS IT CALLED AND HOW DOES IT WORK?

THANK YOU, KIM

Dear Kim
You are referring to the “pot-in-pot" method. You put a pot into a “socket pot" -¯ a container in the ground - and plant the shrub in that. If the pot you are planting in is much smaller than the socket pot, you can raise it on a brick. You do not need any underlying drainage for rocky soil. Here is what expert Gladis Zinati has to say:

Per my understanding, that the use of the rocky soil for producing in Colorado for producing B & B is difficult and the grower is looking for an alternative. My idea is that if the soil is a well-drained soil, the grower can use the land to produce shrubs and small trees in pot-in-pot production system. I attached here a link for the fact sheet I wrote on requirements on establishing pot-in-pot system. You may refer your reader to this fact sheet to learn more about this system. http://www.rcre.rutgers.edu/pubs/publication.asp?pid=FS519

Gladis Zinati, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor and Nursery Management Specialist
Rutgers University, Cook College


Dear DIG IT!
I have had a wisteria bush for about 4-5 years. It has never bloomed. I am
getting ready to cut it down because it is not that pretty just for a bush.
What is the problem?

Carolyn Kornegay

Dear Carolyn
There are two main reasons why your wisteria may not bloom. The first is
pruning to severely, which can remove all the flower buds and over
watering or fertilizing your shrub, which can reduce or stop the plant
from flowering. Try pruning the laterals (long trailing growth) back in
summer to about six inches in length then in winter cut them back to the
third bud. Then stop fertilizing and watering, they grow better when
neglected. If your bush still won't flower try root pruning it to
encourage it to flower.

Jeff Van Pelt, horticultural supervisor, Somerset County Park Commission



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