Gardening Tips

The following articles written by Dr. Garden will provide you with solutions to some of your most challenging garden problems.

Weed Control In the Garden

Monterey offers a number of products that fit into fall, winter and early spring weed control programs.

Weed Impede®  It can be applied to groundcovers, flower beds, around trees and shrubs, and on bare areas. It will give 6 months of weed control. On bare areas it can be combined with Remuda® or other glyphosate products to control emerged weeds. Weed Impede travels down into the soil to control weeds that germinate later. Weed Impede is available in both concentrate and RTS (Ready-To-Spray) formulation. With up to six months of weed control, this is a must-have for anyone wanting to manage an effective, time-saving weed control program.

Remuda® Full Strength 41% glyphosate, the world’s most widely used herbicide, it is an excellent alternative to Roundup®. It is widely believed that glyphosate products do not work during the winter. Not true! – they simply work at a slower pace. To improve effectiveness, whether you are using Remuda® or other glyphosate products, mix 1 oz of Herbicide Helper in 3-5 gallons of spray mixture. Also use the higher rate of Remuda®. This speeds up the results during cooler weather.

Weed Impede® 2 in 1 Concentrate This is a combination of a pre-emergent and a post-emergent herbicide. Apply to non-planted areas, driveways, sidewalks, gravel areas, and around established trees and shrubs. It will control the existing weeds plus give 4-5 months of protection against weeds that have yet to germinate. Available in a concentrate to mix with water and a RTS (Ready-To-Spray) formulation for spot treatment. Ideal in areas that use gravel or rock for landscaping.

Always read complete label for rates and directions for use.

Roundup® is a registered trademark of Monsanto Co.

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Dormant Sprays

We get a lot of questions about the proper timing and products to use as a dormant spray on backyard fruit trees. Dormant sprays control diseases such as peach leaf curl, brown spot, scab, etc and insect and mite eggs.

Liqui-Cop® is a true liquid copper that is widely used in agriculture. It is a replacement for the old Bordeaux sprays and Lime Sulfur. Mixing with lime is not required for this product. For fruit trees, we recommend multiple applications. Apply once in the fall after leaves have fallen, and another in the spring or late winter just before the buds begin to swell. Do not apply Liqui-Cop during the bloom period. For a complete list of diseases and plants that Liqui-Cop can be applied to, see the label. Liqui-Cop is very rain resistant. Once the application dries on the tree, it is very persistent.

Monterey Fungi-Max Brand can also be used on stone fruits to control leaf curl, brown rust, and other diseases. For leaf curl, apply at leaf fall, again at Christmas, and just before bud break in the spring. It can also be combined with Horticultural Oil.

Controlling Insects
Scale is a problem on most fruit trees as well as overwintering eggs from mites, aphids and other insects. These can be handled with an application of Monterey Horticultural Oil, a spray oil emulsion made with highly-paraffinic based petroleum oils. Monterey Horticultural Oil should be applied while the trees are dormant. Thorough coverage is necessary because direct contact with the scales and eggs is required for it to be effective.

The above products, if properly applied in a timely manner during dormant months, should provide you with a disease-free harvest the following summer.

Helpful hint: Many people apply Monterey Horticultural Oil and Liqui-Cop together in a tank mix to save time.

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Nematodes: Could this be the the real problem?

Nematodes are skinny, worm-like parasites that feeds on plant roots. Is your annual vegetable garden starting to look wilted and unhealthy even though you have watered it thoroughly? Does your new turf lawn looking stressed? Do your new veggies look like you are over or underwatering them? Is your new plant growth stagnant? Have you noticed browning, yellowing, wilting or thinning?

If so, you may have a nematode infestation.

  • How do you know if you have nematodes damaging your garden?
  • Galls (swollen-looking growths) on your plant roots will confirm the problem.

Organic pest control methods are the best way to control nematodes in your soil.

Monterey Nematode Control is OMRI Listed for organic gardening. It is a water-soluble botanical extract from the Quillaja saponaria tree (soapbark tree) native to Chile. This organic, bio-pesticide provides excellent control of the following nematodes: Dagger, Root-Know, Ring, Root-Lesion, Spiral Sheath and Anguina Pacifica nematodes.

Monterey Nematode Control is labeled for residential use in home orchards, vineyards, vegetable gardens and on lawns and ornamental plants. 1 quart treats up to 4000 sq ft.

Application: Apply with a band or broadcast sprayer to the soil surface. Water-into the soil by drip or by sprinklers.

Helpful tips for fighting nematodes: Rotating crops so that a different plant grows on the same plot each year is a useful technique to prevent nematodes from taking over your soil. Tomatoes, peppers and lima beans are resistant to nematodes, so rotating these plants with your other crops is an effective preventive measure. Another practice to keep your soil healthy is to fertilize your soil with compost. This introduces microorganisms that are natural predators to nematodes.

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Poison Oak / Poison Ivy Control

Remember: 6 Plus 6 Plus 1. Use 6 oz Remuda® plus 6 oz Monterey Brush & Vine Control per 1 gallon of water.

Always read labels prior to use: Potential damage to desirable plants can occur if not properly applied.

Poison Oak and Poison Ivy are becoming more of a problem in many areas of the U.S. Due to an extensive root system, they become very hard to control. We have tested over-the-counter combinations and found that the most effective is a tank mix of glyphosate and triclopyr (the active ingredients in Remuda® and Monterey Brush & Vine Control). Application of this mix to the active growing foliage from spring to late fall does an excellent job of controlling these pests. The addition of a surfactant such as Herbicide Helper also aids in the control. Fall application before leaf drop appears to be a little more effective than an early spring application. Regrowth the following year may be seen, but spot-treating regrowth is relatively easy. Be sure to thoroughly wet the poison oak or ivy, and do not get on desirable plants.

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Fall and Winter Garden tips

Fall is a good time to prepare the garden for the winter months. The last thing you probably want to think about during winter is gardening, so let’s get it done before it gets miserably cold!

Weed control in the fall is very important in flowerbeds, groundcovers, shrubs and bare ground areas. Apply Weed Impede prior to fall rains and these areas will be weed-free until next spring. Who wants to pull weeds in the winter? In those bare areas where weed growth has already begun, mix Weed Impede with Remuda® to kill existing growth. This will cover both preemergence and postemergence weed control in one application. Weed Impede prevents weed seed germination for up to 6 months!

If you haven’t put down Weed Impede and weeds have already become a problem in your garden, Remuda® and other glyphosate products can be used, but work very slowly in the low temperatures. 

For lawn areas, there are many hard-to-kill winter weeds this time of year. Spurge Power is a product that is perfect for controlling broadleaf weeds in your turf. Take care of these lawn weeds now so your lawn can get off to a good start next spring.

If you have any lingering insects around the house it’s a good time to clean up those spiders, ants, etc. Bug Buster II is designed just for this job. Apply around the house, patio, or under the eaves to prevent insects from overwintering in these areas.

The fall and winter months are also the ideal time to treat deciduous fruit trees to control leaf curl, brown rot and other diseases that appear in the spring. Liqui-Cop and Monterey Fungi-Max Brand are both products that provide excellent protection from these diseases. Make these applications in fall and winter while the fruit trees are dormant. These fungicides can also be combined with Monterey Horticultural Oil to control the overwintering of mites, scale and aphids and their eggs.

That’s it for your fall gardening chores! Get these done early and you can enjoy the holidays and look forward to a great springtime garden!

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Tips for Growing Roses

Roses are one of the first flowers to leaf out and bloom in the spring. Since they come to life early and often under wet conditions, they are attacked by hungry aphids and powdery mildew. Powdery mildew is the whitish area that appears on the new leaf growth. Aphids are generally found on the rose buds. If aphid populations are high, they will destroy early blossoms.

Monterey Horticultural Oil is ideal for controlling aphids. Simply mix a 2% solution (2.4 oz per 1 gallon of water) and apply to the areas where aphids are present. Use a small tank sprayer or hand-held pump sprayer.

For powdery mildew there are several products available for control:

Bi-Carb Old Fashioned Fungicide, based on potassium bicarbonate soluble powder, is just like the stuff that grandma used to spray and it’s great for organic gardening. Mix 2 teaspoons in 1 gallon water and spray on plant surfaces for good disease control.

Monterey Fungi-Max Brand is also an effective defense against powdery mildew on roses. Use a small tank sprayer or hand-held pump sprayer to thoroughly saturate the entire leaf surface of the rose. Mix 1-2 Tbsp in 1 gallon of water. Repeat at 3 week intervals throughout the powdery mildew season.

Helpful tip: you can mix Monterey Fungi-Max Brand with Monterey Horticultural Oil to kill both aphids and powdery mildew in one application!

Downy mildew also attacks roses in certain areas. If this disease is a problem in your rose garden, you can control it with Monterey Garden Phos. This is one of the few products available to control downy mildew. Mix 1½ teaspoons in a gallon of water and thoroughly saturate the leaf surface. Repeat every 7 days during the spring season.

Epsom Salts. For bigger and brighter rose blooms, a dose of Epsom Salts is a must! Simply apply a quarter cup of Epsom salts around the base of the rose bush and let the rainfall or irrigation carry it into the soil.

Always read complete label for rates and directions for use.

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