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Blue Hills Nursery News June 14, 2018

Featured Quote:

"God made rainy days so gardeners could get the housework done."
~ Author Unknown

Blooming at Bluehills

The weekend is for gardening! We have lots of beautiful plants to spruce up the yard before Fathers Day.

Father's Day

Plant a Tree for Father's Day

A great way to make this Father's Day a memorable one is to plant a tree for dad. In addition to providing a valuable asset to your yard, a tree will grow with your family and create a link between your family and your home.

Selecting the proper tree for your yard will require some forethought. The biggest thing to consider is how big the tree will get. Whichever tree you are considering, you should imagine it at its largest potential. You don't want to plant a tree that will get huge right next to your house, driveway, or where it will shade your entire garden all day. Hazards can be below ground too.

The roots of a tree will grow as large as its canopy, and can interfere with unseen water, septic, and sewer lines. Roots can also uplift sidewalks and penetrate foundations. It's always a good idea to have your water and gas lines "staked" beforehand to ensure they won't become a problem later.

The second question to ask yourself is what you your dad would want out of a tree. Would dad like a tree that is occasionally covered in flowers? Would he rather have a fruiting tree? Would he like a large canopy to block hot summer sun, or should it enhance the privacy of your yard by blocking the neighbors' view?

Other considerations, such as soil type, fertilization, and how close it will be to power lines should factor in as well. It is best to choose a tree that will fit in its surroundings without having to be trimmed.

Planting the tree is fairly simple, but doing it correctly is essential to making sure the tree will survive.

  • Dig a hole larger than the container or root ball that the tree came in. Make sure the root flare (where the trunk begins to spread out into roots) will sit above the soil line. Amend with GBO Soil Building Conditioner before planting.
  • Remove any packing material, including wire, twine, or burlap.
  • Cut away any encircling roots to prevent them from strangling the tree.
  • Loosen up roots so they will be able to grow into the soil.
  • Backfill dirt and water it in to ensure there aren't air pockets. Gently tamp the soil down to compact it.

The most common mistake people make when planting trees is to plant them too deep. Make sure the root flare, where the trunk begins to spread out into roots, is above the height of the soil around it. A tree planted too deep will struggle to survive and will have very limited growth. If you're not sure how to identify the root flare, ask someone in the garden center.

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Crape Myrtle

No doubt you're seeing these riotous shrubs and small trees in bloom right now! These beauties like it hot, and are at their best in the warm months.

Some plants grow tired and stressed when high temperatures persist day after day. Crape myrtles, on the other hand, thrive under these conditions, making them valuable flowering shrubs or small trees in the summer landscape. Whether trained as standard or multi-trunk trees, crape myrtles make beautiful specimen or accent plants. Showy crinkled flowers are abundant throughout summer, with colors ranging from the reds to pinks, purples, and white.

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Plant these lovely shrubs in any sunny spot where summer color is needed. Planting is best done in late spring or summer, when they are actively growing. For desired size and shape, prune in early spring. Don't worry too much about your pruning skills, as they bloom on new wood. However, it is important to deadhead as blossoms fade in order to encourage continuous bloom.

Crape myrtles are long-lived, drought tolerant (once established) and relatively pest free, although sometimes aphids and powdery mildew can be a problem. Watering in the morning, to give the foliage plenty of time to dry, will help keep mildew away. They prefer soil that drains well, so amend with GBO Soil Building Conditioner before planting if your soil holds too much water.

As if that weren't enough, the handsome bark and fall leaf color add to an already stunning plant. Add one or more to your landscape, then just sit back and enjoy the show!

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Have a Scented Summer!
Have a Scented Summer!

Summer is almost here...

The days are longer and we're spending more time outdoors.

Now is the time to plant scented shrubs and vines or even a complete scented garden in your "outdoor room." The supply of scented plants is excellent this time of year, and if you plant now there is a good chance of plentiful fragrant blooms all summer. Almost all scented plants can also be grown in containers, so they make a great addition to patios and balconies.

Most of them require good drainage and acidic soil. If you plant them in beds, we recommend amending with GBO Acid Planting Mix. Use an acid fertilizer for both beds and pots.

Come on in and sniff the beautiful scents of summer. We'll help you choose one or more to give your garden and your home fragrances that will delight you all season long.

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June Drop

Do your last thinning on deciduous fruit trees after June drop, nature's way of getting rid of an overload of fruit. It may occur any time between early May and July but is most likely to happen in June. One day you visit your deciduous fruit tree and find a circle of immature fruit lying on the ground under the branches. You may worry if you are new to fruit trees, but don't panic! It's a natural part of the cycle. These trees often set more than double the amount of fruit they could possibly ripen properly, so they simply drop off part of it.

If you thinned out fruit on your trees earlier, you enabled the remaining fruit to grow larger and thus will have less fruit dropping now. Nevertheless, you may need to remove even more fruit than naturally drops in order to space your crop evenly down the branches. Inspect other deciduous fruit trees that are less subject to June drop and thin out their fruits also.

Clean up any fallen fruit under the tree before it has a chance to rot and spread disease. If it's healthy, chop it and add it to your compost pile (cover it with earth to keep away flies and rodents). Also water your deciduous fruit trees deeply in June and July.

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Almond Chicken Salad

What You'll Need:

  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, shredded
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1/2 pound sugar snap peas, halved
  • 2 cups chopped, cooked chicken breast meat
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup blanched slivered almonds, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon teriyaki sauce
  • 1 tablespoon ground dry mustard

Step by Step:

  • In a large bowl, mix together the onions, carrot, red pepper, peas, chicken, cilantro and almonds. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, vinegar, sesame oil, teriyaki sauce and dry mustard until smooth.
  • Pour over salad mixture and toss until coated.
  • Serve in pita pockets or on a bed of lettuce.

Yield: 4 servings


3 day forecast

3 day forecast

Whittier Weather


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When annuals or perennials get leggy or scraggly, consider cutting them back by one-third or more. With some plants, this not only makes them look neater, but it also often encourages a fresh flush of growth and/or bloom.

Contact Information:

(562) 947-2013

16440 E. Whittier Blvd.
Whittier, CA 90603

Open 7 days a week, 8:30 am-5:00 pm

Gardner & Bloome




Gardner & Bloome



Gardner & Bloome

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