The Neighborhood Gardener – March

A pale pink azalea flower close enough to see darker pink speckles on the petals

Happy Gardening!

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Spring into Action for a Healthy Lawn

A bouquet of red roses with white baby's breathWarmer weather means Florida gardeners will be spending more time keeping their lawns looking lovely. Now is the perfect time to check out equipment, do your research, and create a landscape plan before heading outside. We have four steps that can help you get ready for your lawn's active growing season. More


Epcot Flower and Garden Festival

Illustration of a wooden sign reading Epcot Internation Flower and Garden Festival, Fresh EpcotThere's a special event that heralds the arrival of spring in Florida—the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival. Running now through May 29th, the festival features gorgeous gardens, world-famous topiaries, and special events. On Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, our very own Master Gardener volunteers will be answering questions at the garden information desk, and Master Gardener Coordinators will give instructional seminars on topics such as hummingbird gardens and orchids. Visit the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival website.


Wendy's Wanderings

Wendy WilberI never know how spring fever is going to hit me. Sometimes it's the pleasant shock of finding my shopping cart full of beautiful perennial plants—when I only went to the big box store for light bulbs. Or waking up on Saturday with a full-blown panic attack realizing that if I don't get to the nursery immediately they will be sold out of my favorite tomatoes, and if they are sold out, I won't have my favorites and I will suffer with lesser tomatoes all spring omg where are my keys? More


Plant of the Month: Queen's Wreath

purple flower of queen's wreathQueen’s wreath is a tropical flowering vine that looks wonderful this time of year. With drooping lavender flowers, this plant resembles wisteria—without that plant's invasive issues. While usually found growing as a woody vine, queen's wreath can be maintained as a shrub or a small, single- or multiple-trunked tree. Left to its own devices, queen's wreath can reach 40 feet tall, but you can keep it much smaller with occasional pruning. Gardeners in zones 9B and further south can plant this long-flowering vine and enjoy blossoms for many months. More


FruitScapes

FruitScapes title on a photo of a cut papaya along with UF/IFAS Extension logoState Master Gardener Coordinator Wendy Wilber thinks growing fruit trees is a fabulous idea. They provide nutritious food to eat and share with both friends and wildlife, they provide shade, and are an attractive addition to home landscapes. But with so many fruit tree (and shrub) options available to Florida gardeners, it can be difficult to know where to start. Enter FruitScapes, the UF/IFAS website that offers you information on planting and growing over 50 different fruit plants in Florida. More


March in Your Garden

Citrus on the tree in a groveSpring is one of the busiest seasons for Florida gardeners. There are many edibles that can be planted in your garden this month and we have an updated Edibles to Plant this Month infographic that gives you a glance at what can be planted across the state. Now is also the time to start planting heat-tolerant annuals like angelonia and zinnia in your landscape.

For more month-by-month gardening tips, check out the Florida Gardening Calendar. Three different editions of the calendar provide specific tips for each of Florida's gardening regions—North, Central, and South.


Plant Damage? Oh, Deer!

A deerSpotting deer in your backyard can be a sweet treat; spotting damaged plants that have been chewed up by deer can sour your joy. While there are no guaranteed deer-proof plants, there are plants that are resistant to deer damage, as well as steps you can take to protect your garden and landscape. More


What's Going On?

If your Master Gardener program or Extension office is having an event, be sure to share it with us.