Lifestyle Gardening: Peach Tree Care and Vertical Gardening


(gentle music) – Hello again and welcome
to Lifestyle Gardening. I’m Kim Todd and today
we’ll be looking at peach tree care,
vertical gardening, and we’ll talk about
climate concerns for your home garden. We’ll start today’s
program by hearing from backyard farmer
panelist Matt Sousek who’s going to cover
a lot of ground about keeping your
turf green and lush the whole season long. (gentle music) – Over the years, we’ve
talked a lot about different specific topics,
looking at pre-emergent, looking at broadleaf weeds, looking at different ways
to control certain weeds, but in the big scheme of things, in order to have a
nice healthy lawn, you have to look
at the big picture and the main thing you wanna do is have a healthy lawn first and then work on
the problems later. It comes down to an integrated
pest management approach where you wanna make
sure that you’re doing all the correct practices
and that starts with watering, fertilizer, chemicals, and then the weather. Natural events can
play a role in that too that we don’t have a say
in and it just occurs. But if we set ourselves
up to be better or to make it better, we
can have a healthier lawn with less maintenance. So for starters,
if we’re looking at the beginning of the year, typically April May is
when we’re gonna start getting out on the lawn and
actually doing some work and that usually starts
with pre-emergent herbicides and also general cleanup. Maybe the first mowing,
first couple mowing, a little bit of fertilizer. That’s the first step that
we’re gonna start with. Generally watering isn’t as
big of an issue in the spring. We don’t wanna over
water because springtime usually we get
plenty of moisture and a lot of heavier rain events so we don’t wanna
be making our lawn wetter than it needs to be. So starting with pre-emergence, weeds in the spring, crabgrass, foxtail will start coming,
knotweed can be a bad one and if you’re trying to
control some of those, you’re gonna have to think about a pre-emergent
earlier in the year or come back with
some post control to control those weeds
such as Quinclorac for crabgrass or for knotweed you’re gonna have to use
a broadleaf herbicide. Not only do we
have grassy weeds, we do have dandelions,
clover which are the most common
ones in the spring and we’re gonna be seeing
them bloom in May like crazy so we wanna control them
before that happens. And if we didn’t
get a fall knockdown with some broadleaf herbicide, you’re gonna have
to do something in order to get rid of
those yellow flowers that are gonna be coming out. So that’s kind of looking
at the first step, May, April May. Now we get into June. We should have had
our pre-emergent down. We might be putting a second
app of pre-emergent down if we do have some
trouble areas. Not only that, but
escaped broadleaves. We’re gonna do a
broadleaf application. In the spring time, summer time, I’d never recommend
just using 2-4D. There’s a lot of volatilization
issues with high heat in the summer and also
in the early spring, so some of the
three way products that contain 2-4D,
dicamba, mecoprop have a lot better
carriers for those and they’re a lot lower
active ingredients so you’re not gonna
be as big of a risk when you’re spraying
around a lot of the susceptible trees, shrubs,
landscape, ornamentals. Typically that time of year, you also maybe have nut sedge
applications going down. You’re gonna look at
controlling post with maybe SedgeHammer or sulfentrazone. Those are two great
products that work. And then also fertilizer
that time of year is important to
have a healthy lawn so you’re looking at a half to three quarters of
a pound of fertilizer in that let’s say May
15 to June 30 timeframe. If we get through that, crabgrasses if we did miss it, there’s gonna be some
issues with let’s say the pre-emergent
failed or we didn’t get it out soon enough, let’s say that June
July timeframe, your third app, you
might have to go in with some post
control treatments for crabgrass or
grassy weeds, foxtail, whatever other ones
you may have out there. And some of the great products
that work for those is Quinclorac, which is a
great one for grassy weeds and it also covers clover and some broadleaf weeds too. Tenacity is another
one that we’ve used on post crabgrass
and so is Pylex. That’s another one that’s
newer to the market. It’s in some granular herbicides or carrier fertilizer herbicides that it does a good job
of controlling crabgrass. Typically in July, a
little bit of fertilizer can be put out too but we
don’t wanna go too high in the middle of the summer, but it does still need
maybe a half a pound. We get through the
heat of the summer, let’s say the fourth step, we might be getting
into August September and typically that
time of the year, crabgrass is already
pretty fully grown. We’re not gonna look at
too much control on that because it might
be too far along and it’s not very cost
effective to spray it unless you have a really
high maintenance area. Along with that, post
emergent herbicides is probably the most
important for broadleaf weeds in that timeframe. September even into October
or even in November, the most important time
to control a lot of the dandelion, clover, ground ivy. Those are probably
the best case scenario for treating those
later in the year and you’re gonna
get great control going into the winter and then you won’t have
the problem in the spring when control is not as easy. Not only do you
have to know when and how to use your herbicides, but also just the standard
practices of mowing and simply pulling weeds
are justified at some times. If you have areas in your lawn that are thinned or just
a couple here and there, it might not make sense
for you to go out there and actually spray
the whole yard or treat the whole yard, but just on a let’s
say square foot basis, if there’s a small area, you can manage it by hand. And with that, mowing
is very important in controlling weeds as well. The lower you mow the law, the more increase in weed
pressure there’s gonna be because some might able to
get below that turf canopy to the ground, warm it up, and that actually spurs
the growth of new seedlings that are from
previous weed banks. When looking at mowing heights, for tall fescue, two to
three inches would be optimal and you’re not gonna have
very much weed pressure if you’re doing your other
cultural practices correct. If you’re trying to take
it down to one inch, it’s gonna be a
little bit stressed. The canopy’s gonna be opened up and you’re gonna be
more prone to weeds. The same goes for blue grass. Mowing it as low as you can go is not the best choice. You wanna give that a
little bit of top growth, at least two inches
to two and a half, and that way you’re
out competing those weeds that are trying
to get through the canopy. – If you want turf in your lawn, you want it to look lush, and that’s going to take
some effort as Matt said. You’ll have to keep
an eye on the calendar as well as the amount of
rainfall you’re getting in order to keep
that grass green and to stay on top
of those pesky weeds. We’ve been focusing
on trends this year for our landscape lessons. For today’s feature, we’ll show you some
ideas for growing up. Of course, I’m talking
about vertical gardening and as you’ll see, it
is a great technique for when you don’t
have a lot of space or you just wanna try
something really creative. (gentle music) We’re continuing talking
about garden trends for 2020 and one of the ones
that is really important and fun is vertical gardening. We’ve done segments
on this before. It’s really coming back into
a lot more style and vogue as people are thinking,
can I go up instead of out especially in an
urban situation. It’s a little hard to
find a vertical green wall outside in the
middle of the winter, but this is a great example of some of the possibilities. What you need to think
about is the material that you want to use
to actually create that vertical space, how
complex you want to be and then of course what you
want to grow on that wall. In this particular instance, it’s a combination of all
sorts of different materials. We have everything as
something as simple as hardware cloth that
then can be stuffed with the mosses and the
quar and the kinds of small little
breathable materials that will let
plants grow in them. This one actually also has
regular old shelf brackets and then the shelf
brackets are holding boxes and then within the boxes, we have that growing medium
and then of course the plants. The other thing
that this wall has that is possible
depending on the material you have outside is
this one has a fig actually attaching
itself to the structure. What you also need
to be thinking about is the complexity of the
management of these walls because just like everything
else in the landscape, this is not a set it,
forget it, walk away and think you never have
to do anything again. That is particularly true
if what you’re trying to do is grow plants that you can eat on this particular
vertical garden wall. You have a lot of options
with vertical gardening that are actually
sort of temporary just in case you
change your mind. As an example, these
sorts of structures can sit in a container. You could grow vines,
you could grow peas. Even if you want
something to eat, they can also sit in the garden and then become a part of the
landscape or the sculpture. Other options are of
course the trellises and they are again, pretty
tough and pretty sturdy and free standing. People always think
of these trellises whether it is the metal
one or the wood one as something that is just
sort of flat in the garden, but you can hang
containers on them, you could take the containers or the boxes that we saw
in the previous shot, hang them on these frames
and move them around. You can also use the
window box kind of frame that has the quar
in it that becomes another option for
just creating something really interesting. Then you also have
structures like this and this one is
obviously pre made, but pretty simple
because what you can do with this one is you can
actually open it wide, set it low, grow vines
up, hang plants on it, hang plants in it. When you are finished
with the season, you simply close that
up and put it away or you could actually
make it really narrow and then it gets taller. So you really do have
a lot of flexibility with this garden
trend and of course, as with all things landscape, you start with that you’re
trying to accomplish, you take a look at the
site or the location where you’re wanting
to grow those plants, then you choose the plants, and then you decided
about the complexity of the management system, whether it is you with a
watering can on a ladder if you’re really short or whether you have a system that is absolutely automatic. Vertical gardening helps you
create interest and beauty and it can also
help you save space. You can create those
green spaces on wall or you can try one
of the numerous trellises we just saw. And it’s another great
way to reuse or recycle some of the structures
you might already have in your garden. You know, each week
on Lifestyle Garden, we like to talk to an expert
about important topics in the landscape world. Today we’re going
to be hearing from extension educator
Tyler Williams about climate
concerns and how those might effect your home garden. (upbeat music) I get to talk today
with Tyler Williams who is a Nebraska extension
educator who focuses on weather and climate. And Tyler, I know that
a lot of your work really is with agronomy
and agricultural producers and across the state
with the farm community. And of course, our show
is really more focused on people in urban areas
in their own backyards. We do stretch into acreages
and those kinds of things. Can you start by
talking a bit about what you know and
what you understand about the ag side and
how that really effects the urban side. – Sure, I mean,
that’s the nice thing about ag and urban areas. They’re still dealing
with the same climate and weather, right? It doesn’t stop at
the edge of town, so that part’s easy. There are a number
of weather patterns and climate variables
that come into play, I focus on the ag world, that would impact urban settings probably pretty similar way. You just think
about temperature. Temperature’s a pretty easy one that influences how things grow. Doesn’t matter if it’s
a flower or a corn plant or a soybean plant that
changes in that temperature influence how it might work. One of the big things that
we’ve seen here in Nebraska is that the change in
temperature overtime as well as some seasonal
shifts in precipitation. If we just focus on
temperature for a minute, the long term trend from 1895, we’ve increased about
one to two degrees, which isn’t a lot
if you think about for over 125 years, but in the last roughly
30 years, 35 years, we’ve been above the
last century average. So we’ve slowly increased,
but we’ve just been maintaining above the average. And so we’ve been pretty
consistent in that trend. Again, we have year
to year variations. Just look back to 2019, third coldest year
we’ve had since 1895, so how does that fit into
this long term pattern? And so we get those
ups and downs, but overall, that trend’s
been fairly consistent. When it comes to precipitation, we’ve seen a pretty strong
uptick in spring precipitation. We see that that’s increased
about an inch and a half over the last 30 to 35
years across the state. Of course, there’s a big
variation across our state from one end to the next, but
overall an inch and a half. It makes a difference. It’s an extra 20%
of rain in a season can make a big
difference on too wet or it all coming in
one event and that has some influences on
how our plants grow and maybe how we should
design our urban structures or how we lay out
a field of corn. It’s all impacted. – I’m glad you brought
up both of those issues because of course
in the plant world, we think first about
the zone that we’re in and we have seen a shift. We’re a 5ab zone and of course that’s only one
element of what causes a plant to either grow
well or not grow well and I know what people are
also then interested in is not just what
did happen in 2019, everything from the temperature
to a lot of moisture. (laughing)
– A lot of moisture. – But any notion on what
we might expect in 2020 if you get to
predict the weather or take a look at where
those trends are going? – If I predict
the weather right, I probably should go to Vegas and put it all on
black or something, but right now we’re sitting at, we’re sort of vulnerable
I would say right now. After the issues
that we had last year with all the excess
water and flooding and frozen soils, we had
a lot of infrastructure that was damaged and
things we’re really pushed to the limit and
if they weren’t broken, they were tested. But we’re sitting
with a lot of moisture in our system. Our soils are pretty
much fully saturated. Most of the
reservoirs and rivers are relatively high. There really isn’t any
extra room for more water and so that’s probably
our biggest concern is if we have a normal year, we probably will have
some flooding issues, especially if you’re
along one of the rivers. If we think, okay, the
chances of having normal are probably pretty good. Above normal is decent so
there’s a pretty good chance that we can see
enhanced flooding, probably not to the level that
we had last year of course ’cause that was, a lot
of things came together to make that an issue
but there will be flooding somewhere this year. That will be a problem
and so think about what maybe worked last year, what failed last year and try to think about what
you would do differently if that happened again because
we’ve seen trends over time. We’ve been seeing this
trend coming out of winter of being very cold in February and overlapping
with excess moisture and enhanced precipitation, so that overlapping
of that very cold and then switch
quickly to wet pattern brings into high risk
of what we had last year of having that rain
on the frozen soil. So I don’t see that risk
going down any time soon. – And that does
apply in town as well as peoples’ basements flood and they can’t get
into their garden and all those things
that we really want to do as we get desperate for spring. I think one more issue
and one more comment I’d like to have you think
about or comment on is wind. Our wind patterns seem
to be a lot more severe in some locations and of
course plants don’t feel wind chill even though
we all whine about it but what have you seen
or what do you see with sort of these
violent and unpredictable or higher wind
patterns in the ag or the landscape sectors? – Yeah and so overall, I
don’t know if we’ve seen a shift in wind storms, but the timing of
them, when they happen seems to be further
out in the season. It’s a little bit
later in the year. I’ll talk specifically
in an ag setting here, but a high wind event
in October or September is really devastating
to a corn crop ’cause it knocks
off all of the corn, the ears of corn when
the plant’s dying and so it’s pretty hard to
get that off the ground. We’ve seen that
susceptibility of the storms later in year has been quite
common in the last few years. Projections for those
are way up in the air as far as if that will continue or if that’s just kind
of a short pattern just ’cause it’s
convective systems are really hard to
predict and forecast ’cause there are a lot
of variables at play but we’ve definitely
felt this higher humidity is at play a role in
these thunderstorm events and where they happen
and when they happen. That probably takes
a lot of person, or someone smarter than
me to figure that out, but certainly we’ve seen
that that shoulder part of the season’s had
those thunderstorm events that we’re not typically
used to having. – All right, so this
has been great Tyler. I know we just barely
touched the surface, so we’ll hope to have you back either on the real show or one of our other shows,
but in the mean time, it’s kind of, you can’t
dink with mother nature, so just get ready for whatever she’s going to throw our way. – It’s something
different every year, it’s always something. – All right, thanks Tyler. Understanding climate
issues can help you be more flexible in the garden. The scorching drought
in 2012 and of course the recent flooding
has taught all of us to be prepared for just
about anything in Nebraska. Let’s take a break and
here’s some answers to your frequently
asked questions. Our backyard farmer
panelists are here to help you with some of the
more basic garden questions that we hear on the show. And even though Backyard Farmer
isn’t on the air right now, you can always send us an email. That address is [email protected] (upbeat music) – Right now at this time
through winter and early spring, we wanna pick
those bagworms off. So right now they may be
eggs in some of those bags. Some of them may be empty, but sometimes we don’t know. Those bags will be
hard to pull off because they’re
attached to those twigs with really strong silks, so you may wanna go
out with some scissors and cut those down and
destroy those bags. Come May usually near the end is when the little caterpillars are gonna hatch
out of those bags, so we wanna get them before that and that’s what we
can do right now. After they hatch,
you may want to, well look very closely. They’re gonna be super tiny. We would say to treat with BT and make sure it’s
for caterpillars. You wanna treat around
the middle of June so that way we know that
all of the caterpillars have emerged. With BT, it really depends
on the thoroughness of treating that
plant that it’s on so that they can
consume the toxins and die after feeding. Once the bags get about
a half an inch long, they have a lot of
silk and they have a lot of protection,
so that’s gonna be harder to kill them
with that insecticide. Spinosad might be a
good product to use and then after they
get really large, you may wanna use some other
conventional insecticides, but again, picking
them off is going to be the best way to control those. (upbeat music) – So I know a lot of gardeners
are itching to get out in the garden and
they’re ready to plant whenever the season warms up. And a lot of people
especially with their fruits and vegetables, they wait until, well,
they say I’ll have to wait until Mother’s Day to plant this because that’s whenever
we typically have our last frost in
most of the state, and so we’re out planting
all of those things that wouldn’t survive our frost. But guess what? There’s lots of thing that
we can actually get out and plant way before that, and those are the cool
season vegetables, and those are things
that we can think about in the winter, ’cause
we can actually get out much earlier and plant those. We’re thinking about
things like leafy greens, lettuces, kale,
other Asian greens, some of the mustards,
things like that that you can actually
get out and plant pretty early on in the season. You can also think
about things like peas. They do very well
whenever the cool weather is still going as well
as some of the root crops like radishes and carrots. What you wanna take a look at is to look at the
actual soil temperature and that’s what’s important
for crops like this. The air temperature
might be one thing, but the soil temperature
changes much more slowly so you can actually
find weather stations in your area that actually
have a soil probe temperature. You can actually
look that up online and find the real
time soil temperature to see when it’s time
to plant these crops. For some of them, it’s going to be in the
range of about 40 to 45 and 50 degrees when
you can actually start planting some
of those things, which is way earlier
than if you were planting tomatoes and peppers. So you wanna be on the lookout and you can do a
little research, ’cause some of those
crops have different needs and different temperature needs. Some of them will sort
of hang out in the soil until it’s time to germinate, but some of them
won’t because we have all kinds of fungi and
bacteria in the soil that are just there waiting
for a fresh seed to drop for them to eat and if it
takes too long to germinate, they might rot in the soil. You wanna take a look for
some of those temperatures and for some of those early
crops that you can incorporate into your garden and get out
earlier before Mother’s Day and get those
things in the garden so you can have a
bountiful harvest even before May and
June rolls around. – Stay tuned to
Lifestyle Gardening as we’ll cover more
frequently asked questions on our upcoming programs. For our final feature today, we’re going to hear from
former Kimmel Orchard manager Vaughn Hammond about
proper peach tree care. Vaughn will focus on
good pruning techniques you should be aware of
and he’s also going to keep you up to date on
controlling those insect pests that might attack
those peach trees. (upbeat music) You know, in spite of what
mother nature threw at us in Nebraska this year, people are still hopeful for
that great peach off the tree. So I get to talk
to Vaughn Hammond about how exactly to
prune your peach trees. Vaughn, pruning peaches
is a little different from pruning apples, so
when do we prune peaches for the best results? – Peaches are a
little bit different. They are such an early
blooming type of fruit along with apricots that
really we wait ’till the very last minute
to prune peaches, just in case we get
that really early or I guess it would
be really late freeze. – So Vaughn, why exactly
do we prune the peaches the way we prune them? – Same reason we
prune for apple trees. We’re really
opening up that tree for the increase on
light penetration and again, the
increased air movement throughout the structure
of the tree itself. – All right Vaughn, the
technique for pruning peaches also looks to be a
little bit different than it is for the one
that we use for apples. Is this true? – Okay, unlike the apple tree, we still want to have
a very open tree, so we’re pruning to
an open vase system where sunlight can penetrate down into the
center of that tree. The other difference is that
we’re really looking for only three to four at
the most scalped branches of which to produce that fruit and all the wood
that’s off of it. Peach trees are
really quite unique in that peaches bear
fruit on one year old wood and it’s really easy to
tell one year old wood on a peach tree
because it tends to be very vibrant in color. It can be vibrant orange or red or even tending towards yellow. But it’s really
important to realize that that brightly colored wood is where this year’s peaches
are coming from themselves. One thing about this tree, you can tell that
there’s a lot of growth. You’re really looking for
about 18 inches maximum so when you’re pruning,
you’re coming back and tipping each and every
one of these branches in order to create a
good, stable structure for that peach to hang off of. One of the main insect pests,
actually two insect pests that attack peaches is
the greater and the lesser peach tree borer. One attacks the trunk,
the other attacks the scalped branches
just three to four foot out from the trunk. It tends to be a
little bit larger wood whereas wood this
size is too small for the peach tree borer
to actually attack. It needs to have
a little bit more substantial size to it in
order for the peach tree borer to penetrate. – I really appreciate
that information and I’m sure our
audience just can’t wait to bite into that
luscious peach. – Yeah and don’t
forget to use a napkin. (laughing) – Good pruning can make
a world of difference in how your peach tree
performs this season. We can’t do anything
about the weather, but we can put good
practices to use to keep those peaches healthy. Thanks again for joining
us for Lifestyle Gardening. Next time, we’ll show you
some more garden trends and we’ll take a look
at some incredible color combinations at
the garden center. Don’t forget to check
us out on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter,
so good morning, good gardening,
thanks for watching. We’ll see you all next time
on Lifestyle Gardening. (upbeat music)

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