Friday, September 28, 2012

What Can Be Done for Nematodes?

Tomato Roots infected with RKN
If you garden in sandy soil, there is a good chance nematodes are plaguing your plants, draining them of the energy they need to grow and thrive. Nematodes are tiny, microscopic worms that feed within plant roots. You can think of them as the leeches of the plant world. Several types of nematodes are common in the south, and frequently cause problems in vegetable gardens, lawns and landscapes.

Two of the most troublesome nematodes in the southeast are the root knot nematode (RKN) and sting nematode. In vegetable gardens, there are several practices gardens can use to manage levels of these pests, including planting nematode suppressive crops. In landscapes and lawns, keeping levels down is more difficult.

Learn more! Read the whole article on the Pender Cooperative Extension website: 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Fall Issue of Extension Gardener Now Online!

From planting to composting, fall is a great time to garden! The latest issue of the Extension Gardener Newsletter will help you with your fall garden projects and chores. Extension Gardener newsletter is written by horticultural experts with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service. Each issue includes statewide features plus a special regional section written specifically for your area of the state.

You can also follow Extension Gardener on Twitter, at @NCExtGardener, friend us on Facebook at NC Extension Gardener, and keep up with the latest gardening news on the new Extension Gardener blog:

In the Fall 2012 Coastal Plain and Sandhills issue, you can learn about:
  • Why fall is a great time to plant
  • Managing insects without pesticides
  • Growing broccoli
  • Fire ants
  • The importance of insects
  • 'Miss Ruby' butterfly bush
  • Persimmons
  • Greenscaping
  • and lots more!

Download your copy here today!

Time to Plant Onions and Garlic!

'Grano Red' Onion
Interested in cultivating sweet, home-grown onions and flavorful garlic in your own backyard? If so, now is the time to plant. Growing onions from seed and garlic from cloves is easy to do in home gardens. Onions and garlic have few pest problems, and crops started now will be ready for harvest in spring. Ensure your success by preparing your soil well and choosing varieties recommended for the south. Learn more at

Subscribe to Food Gardener email news to receive updates on what to plant and how to care for your vegetable and herb garden. To subscribe, send an  the email to Leave the subject line blank. In the body of the message put: subscribe foodgardener

Friday, September 14, 2012

Passalong Plants

Crinum 'Ellen Bosanquet'
The tradition of sharing favorite plants with friends and family is as old as the practice of gardening itself. Plants that are tough, durable, and easy to propagate are often shared among friends and neighbors, or passed down from one generation to the next. Some plants are shared so commonly, they have come to be known as ‘passalong plants’. If you have a plant you wish to pass along to someone, fall is a great time to do so.

Learn more about dividing and sharing plants by reading the rest of the article posted on the Pender Cooperative Extension website:

Passalong Plant Sale
Pender County Extension Master Gardeners will offer favorite and reliable plants from their gardens during their fall plant sale, held in conjunction with the Poplar Grove Farmers Market, Wednesday, September 19, from 8am to 1pm at Poplar Grove Plantation, located on Hwy 17 south of Hampstead. All plants at the sale have been grown by Pender Master Gardeners, who will be more than happy to share plant lore and gardening advice with you.

Plant Cole Crops Now!

Young broccoli plants

September is prime time to set out transplants of cabbage, kale, collards, broccoli, and cauliflower, a group of crops collectively known as the cole crops. If you have tried these crops in the spring and failed, be sure try again this fall. Cole crops thrive in the consistently cool temperatures of autumn and do not bolt (go to flower) as they often do in spring.

Young plants are currently available from most local garden centers and nurseries. Plant in a sunny area with well drained soil. Incorporate compost into the soil before planting and soil test to determine if lime or nutrients need to be added.  

Make sure to keep newly set out plants well watered and apply an organic or slow release fertilizer at planting time. In addition, a dose of liquid fertilizer or compost tea at planting time will help new transplants establish quickly. Learn more about growing each of these crops by reading the whole article posted on the Pender Cooperative Extension website:

Friday, September 7, 2012

One Dish Gardening!

Salad bowl garden
Don’t let limited garden space stop you from growing vegetables this fall. Many cool season crops are easy to grow in containers and now is the time to plant them. Salad greens like lettuce, spinach, and arugula thrive even in shallow pots. They are often planted mixed together with herbs and other greens in bowl shaped containers, providing all the ingredients you need for healthy, tasty salads in a single pot.

To start a salad bowl garden you will need plants, potting soil, a container, and fertilizer. Learn more about each of these and how to plant and care for your salad bowl garden by reading the whole article posted on the Pender Cooperative Extension website: