The Neighborhood Gardener – March

Hot pink flower-like bracts of bougainvillea

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Spiral Herb Gardens

Young man kneeling over the beginning layout of a spiral gardenLooking to "spice up" your herb garden? Herb spiral gardens are the solution! Not only are they pleasing to the eye, but they also create microclimates so you can intentionally place your herbs where they will thrive in the spiral. Follow along as the UF/IFAS Extension Bay County Master Gardener Volunteers build their spiral herb garden.

Tabletop Hydroponics

Baby basil plant growing in hydroponic unitEven if you don't have a yard, you can still grow your food! Tabletop hydroponic kits are becoming increasingly popular because they make growing plants indoors as easy as making coffee. This tutorial on Gardening Solutions shows you how to set one up step-by-step and gives you tips for success.

Fertilizing Your Florida Lawn

An attractive Florida lawnFertilizing your lawn should never be a guessing game. This updated article on Gardening Solutions gives you best practices to follow when fertilizing, and provides the necessary tools for calculating which fertilizer to use, how much to use, and how to safely apply it.

Wendy's Wanderings

Wendy WilberAs long as there have been gardeners there have been gardeners sharing their knowledge with each other. Take for example my recent trip to a certain wholesale club. I noticed a display of lilac bushes for sale. Lilacs don't grow in Florida. I quickly positioned myself in front of the display to educate potential buyers to not throw good money after bad. Thankfully my friend finished her purchase and got me out of there before management did. Wendy celebrates 50 years of Master Gardener Volunteers sharing research-based information.

Plant of the Month: Fringetree

A small cluster of yellow berries that resemble a bunch of grapesYou might never see snow in your Florida yard, but you can have "snow flowers"! That's the meaning of fringetree's botanical name, and it aptly describes the tree's snowy white, ribbon-like flowers. This tree is also loved for its low maintenance needs and olive-like fruits that attract birds. Also called Grancy Greybeard and old man's beard, fringetree grows well in North and Central Florida. Learn more about the Chionanthus species.

March in Your Garden

Bright pink azalea flowers Prune azaleas only when they have finished blooming, to reduce their size and improve their form. In the edible garden, North and Central Florida gardeners can start warm-season vegetables for early harvest. This is the last month to plant many edibles in South Florida, including beans, cantaloupe, carrots, and watermelon.

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.

What's Going On?

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