Bulb augers are used for boring holes, and they generally come in two sizes -- one for smaller bulbs and a larger version for tulips, daffodils and the like. Online they are around $15; I'll be looking for one in the garden centers this week.
I'm walking through my garden during these early days of fall, looking at what worked and what didn't work. Next year, I need to remember to add pre-emergent herbicides to a few beds midway through the summer, as the weeds came in hot and heavy in July this year. It seems like we had a lot of rain, so it's possible the spring application washed away.
I don't use a lot of chemicals, but Preen is a great help in a couple of my newer beds that haven't filled in with "wanted" plants yet. Some ground covering sedums are on the verge of taking over the empty spots, and in a year or two there won't be much space for those weeds to grow. Be careful when applying pre-emergents such as corn gluten (organic) or Preen (synthetic). While they don't harm existing plants, they will stop the reseeding of delphiniums or rose campions and other plants that rely on reseeding for future flowers.
I'll be planting the perennials that I used in my containers on the porch into bare spots in the garden beds in the next few days. And I'll be dreaming of what perennials I'll purchase next year for those pots!
Butterfly way station
Educator Heather Baliko's project at the Clay Center has become official! The butterfly garden, planted by the After School Explorers Club, was just certified as a Monarch Waystation.
"I had heard about the Monarch Watch program while researching for the After School Explorers Club when we made the garden," Baliko said. "Monarch Watch is a program, run by Kansas State University, dedicated to the education and research about, as well as conservation of monarch butterflies. It has been determined in recent years that monarch populations are declining due specifically to habitat loss.
"The Monarch Waystation program is an effort to encourage people to plant pollinator gardens that attract monarchs and support them throughout their life cycle, providing both host and nectar plants. Here is the website for more info: www.monarchwatch.com/waystations/.
"To become certified, I simply filled out the application on their website, which asks questions like the size of the garden, the types of plants in the garden, and what kind of environmentally friendly practices are used in the maintenance of the garden.
"Our garden will be entered into the Monarch Waystation registry, which can be found at www.monarchwatch.org. We have received a certificate and ordered a permanent sign to be displayed in the garden."
To ask Heather about the project, contact her at hbal...@theclaycenter.org or 304-561-3508.
Reach Sara Busse at sara.bu...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1249.