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Table of Contents

Compiled by Stan Barrett, Colorado State University Cooperative Extension master gardener, Denver County.

  1. Flowers: Please tell me which Hybrid Tea Roses are suitable for planting in Denver and also have good fragrance.
  2. Flowers: I planted some bare-root roses this spring, but they have not shown any signs of growth, even though the weather has been unusually warm.
  3. Flowers: I would like to plant a cutting garden this year, for indoor display, using mostly annuals. Can you suggest some suitable flowers, by color?
  4. Lawns: Is there anything I can do about the spots of "burned" grass that my dog causes by urinating on the lawn?
  5. Trees & Shrubs: The new growth on my honeylocust tree is deformed. What causes this?
  6. Trees & Shrubs: I live in the foothills at 7500 ft. What trees will be hardy at my site?
  7. Trees & Shrubs: We want to plant a new tree in the front yard. What is the difference between bare root, potted and ball-and-burlap trees?
  8. Vegetables & Fruits: What vegetables can I plant in the early spring?
  9. Vegetables & Fruits:  Should I bother to control weeds between my rows of vegetables?

Please tell me which Hybrid Teas Roses are suitable for planting in Denver and also have good fragrance.

The following Hybrid Teas Roses would meet your requirements:

  • Chrysler Imperial--bright red-- somewhat tender, so protect in winter with 9 inches of soil mounded over the bud union in a rose collar.
  • Dolly Parton--orange.
  • Double Delight--red blend.
  • Fragrant Cloud--orange-red.
  • Miss All-American Beauty--medium pink.
  • Mister Lincoln--deep red.
  • Oklahoma--dark red--somewhat tender, so protect in winter the same as Chrysler Imperial.
  • Perfume Delight--hot pink.
  • Pink Peace--medium pink.
  • Tropicana--orange-red.
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I planted some bare-root roses this spring, but they have not shown any signs of growth, even though the weather has been unusually warm.

Bare-root stock must be soaked in water for several hours before planting. The soil should be kept moist for the first few weeks, to encourage rooting. If the temperature is unseasonably warm after planting, protect the canes from the sun using wet burlap, or mound soil around the canes and gradually remove it as growth begins.

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I would like to plant a cutting garden this year, for indoor display, using mostly annuals. Can you suggest some suitable flowers, by color?

A cutting garden should sue a range of flowers that differ in size and shape as well as color. The following should give a good start:

  • White: Cosmos, Gypsophila, Lavatera, Nicotiana, Snapdragon.
  • Blue: Ageratum, Larkspur, Lupine, Centauria, Victoria Salvia.
  • Yellow: Calendula, Chrysanthemum, Zinnia, Sunflower, Tickweed.
  • Pink: Achillea, Cosmos, Cleome, Stocks, Sweet Pea.

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Is there anything I can do about the spots of "burned" grass that my dog causes by urinating on the lawn?

Two approaches may be used. The first is to train the dog to use a particular place every time, maybe a gravel area at the edge of the lawn. While this training is underway you can repair the existing damage by raking up the dead grass, drenching the spot with a hose for three days in succession, then re-seeding or re-sodding the spot.

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The new growth on my honeylocust tree is deformed. What causes this?

Several insects and mites feed on honeylocust trees and can cause conspicuous injuries. Heavy infestations can reduce tree growth rate and vigor but rarely cause permanent injury. The culprit is usually the larvae of the honeylocust podgall midge, which cause the infested leaflets to curl and thicken, forming small "pod galls" instead of expanding normally. This pest has multiple annual generations, of which the most damaging is the earliest one, occurring from the time of first growth through mid-summer. Chemical controls have been only moderately successful. These include pyrethroids, Carbaryl,   and Mavrik, which should be applied to coincide with the first flush of new growth and repeated every three or four weeks until mid-summer. (NOTE: Do not use dimethoate (Cygon) which is extremely toxic to honeylocust.) For information on other pests and diseases affecting the honeylocust, see CSU Fact Sheets 5.571 and 2.939.

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I live in the foothills at 7,500 ft. What trees will be hardy at my site?

Evergreens that should be hardy at 7,500 ft . include Engelmann spruce (Picea engelmanni), Colorado spruce (P. pungens), Black Hills spruce (P. glauca 'Densata'), Bristlecone pine (Pinus aristata), Limber pine (P. flexilis), Ponderosa pine (P.ponderosa), Austrian pine (P. nigra), Pinyon pine (P. edulis) and White fir (Abies concolor).

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We want to plant a new tree in the front yard. What's the difference between bare root, potted and ball-and-burlap trees?

Bare root trees are usually the least expensive. They are available only in the spring, as dormant stock. Large caliper (truck diameter) trees are not available as bare root. Too much of their root system is lost during digging to have a reasonable chance of surviving. (Transplant survival rates are usually lowest for bare root stock).

Potted trees are bare toot trees that have been containerized. If they have been growing in the pot only a short while, new roots will not be well-established. Therefore the root ball may fall apart when the tree is removed from the pot, giving you a "bare root" plant. If the tree has been potted for a long time, its roots may have started circling around the pot, growing in on themselves. The roots should then be sliced with a vertical cut halfway up through the center of the root mass then pulled apart (butterflied) to encourage the growth of new roots.

With a B&B tree, care must be taken not to break apart the root ball while planting. Burlap and twine must be removed to prevent girdling or excessive drying from burlap wicking moisture from the root ball to the surface. If a wire basket was used, instead of burlap, it should be cut off to prevent subsequent root girdling.

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What vegetables can I plant in the early spring?

The following can be planted 4 to 6 weeks before the frost-free date in your area:

  • Brocolli, cabbage, lettuce, onions, peas, potatoes, spinach, turnips.

The next list are not quite as hardy, but can be planted 2 to 4 weeks before the frost-free date:

  • Beets, carrots, chard, mustard, parsnips, radishes.
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Should I bother to control weeds between my rows of vegetables?

Yes! Weeds rob your crops of water, nutrients and light.  Some weeds harbor diseases, insects and nematodes that may reinfect garden in succeeding years.  After each irrigation or rainfall, as soon as the soil is workable, it is good to cultivate with a hoe just under the soil surface to kill any new weeds. In a small garden the weeds can also be controlled with black fabric or polyethylene mulch, supplemented by hand weeding. Mulching with organic material is also a common practice. Good materials to use are partially decomposed hay, straw or grass clippings, applied 4 inches thick when the plants are about 6 inches tall.  Hoe out any small weeds first.

Not only does the mulch control weeds, it also conserves moisture, keeps the soil from being compacted and gradually increases the organic content of the soil.

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Date last revised: 01/05/2010