Mother Nature is efficient with rain

Many Oklahomans have been fortunate to get at least a little rain over the last 2 weeks and it felt fabulous. It always amazes me how efficient Mother Nature can be with so little moisture. We are still very hot and dry but even that little moisture has turned many almost totally brown Bermuda grass lawns back to green in a matter of days. Many weeds and our heartiest annuals and perennials are now producing a flush of new growth.  Much of the plant world is trying to show and live a life of hope after a summer of drought and despair. Even the trees, shrubs and plants we have been watering all summer had been fighting to survive and the rains literally seem to bring them to life. Drip irrigation and water sprinklers are good but nothing matches the refreshing nature of rain delivered in the form of cooling showers. It is depressing to drive around the state and see all the serious damage to even our deep rooted trees and shrubs. We are still battling triple digit temperatures so our crops are still drying out very quickly and still need your extra watering assistance.

If you were blessed with rains and are now getting some new growth on your plant materials this is a good time to do the final feeding of this growing season on your trees and shrubs. We don’t want to feed them too late where they are soft and just producing new growth as we approach our first freezes of early November. Fertilize in the next few weeks so that the new growth has a chance to harden up before those freezes. This new fall growth can help your permanent plantings produce a fall surge of natural sugars and energy to fortify your plants. This will allow them to store up energy to help survive the winter and to be ready to launch a new season next spring. If you are seeing new growth on your lawn and annuals this is a good time to feed all except shade grasses. Apply a pre-emergent herbicide by itself or select a good weed and feed product to kill weed seeds before they germinate as you fertilize your lawn.

Even though our daytime temperatures are still setting records and passing 100° regularly, we are experiencing slightly cooler evenings and mornings which means it is not staying so hot as many hours per day.  A couple of times we have even gotten a small taste of fall which makes it more believable when we advise that you need to rush to finish planting your fall vegetable garden. If you plan to over seed your lawn with tall fescue to enjoy a green lawn this winter you need to be locating the seed for a good variety like Crossfire III, Hounddog, Wolfpack or you can select one of the many tall fescue blends with multiple varieties in the mix to plant in mid September.  Don’t forget to focus on watering and feeding all your plants and planting your fall vegetable gardens.


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