07) November 21, 2018

As I write this column, the weather forecast is for a frigid Thanksgiving Day. If you were waiting for the ground to freeze before you put the winter layer of mulch on your gardens, the wait is over.

With the arrival and passage of Thanksgiving comes all the shopping. With the cold weather, you have to be careful with any holiday plants that you may purchase. If you purchase a poinsettia, keep in mind that they can easily be damaged by the cold and wind. If the poinsettias are not properly wrapped up for the trip home, the plants can be damaged by either the cold temperatures or by the exposure to wind. Many years ago, I was at a warehouse club picking up a few things. The day was bitterly cold and the wind was blowing like crazy. As I am walking across the parking lot, I see someone with a poinsettia sitting on the child seat of the carriage. The plant had no protective sleeve around the plant and the wind was beating up the plant. By my estimation, the plant would probably be dead within a few days even though the plant probably went into a warm car and then into a warm home. The trip across the parking lot sealed the fate of that poor poinsettia. If you are doing any of your Black Friday shopping, make sure that the plants are bundled up.

As many of you know, we have been, for the past 36 years, a Christmas decorating store at this time of the year. We sell wreaths, roping and many different types of evergreen boughs for decorating. Some years the evergreens, be it trees or cut branches are dry to a lack of water in the fall. I don’t need to tell you that the plants got the water they needed this fall. This will help these decorations to last longer this holiday season. With a weather forecast for moderating temperatures later in the week, you should be able to get your outside decorating done in between any raindrops. With greens filled with water courtesy of Mother Nature, your outside decorating should look good for the holiday season.

Many of you have been using cactus and succulents as houseplants. One of the things that you need to know is that these types of plants can be easily killed if you keep them over watered in the winter months. If the soil stays wet all the time, the plants are likely to rot away right at the soil line. You want these plants to have dryer soil before you water them. Make sure that you apply enough water so that the water drains out the bottom of the pot. If the pot is sitting on a saucer, make sure to empty the water out of the saucer. By watering your cactus and succulents in this manner during the winter months, you will have much happier plants.

Well, that’s all for this week. You will probably go shopping this weekend for the bargains. Remember that this Saturday is Small Business Saturday. This is a day to support your local small businesses. We will all appreciate your support.

I’ll talk to you again next week.

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