Set up stink bug traps in your yard.
These traps will lure stink bugs with an attractant that is odor-free to humans, before they enter your home or damage your vegetable or fruit gardens.
A light can be purchased separately to be added to the trap for indoor use.
Remember to mow your lawn high (3-4 inches) to prevent stress and shade the roots.
• If Milky Spore is not a part of your lawn and garden maintenance program, and Japanese Beetles are a problem, consider using a Grub killer.
We recommend something with Dylox as the active ingredient as this will not only kill the grubs within 24 hours of application, but will also kill chinch bugs, sod webworms, and many other lawn pests.
• Prune marigold flowers at the first sign of discoloring.
A major disease (called botrytis) will take out marigolds quickly if you do not keep them pruned this time of the year.
Pruning them will also promote a more lush and blooming plant.
• Prune back to the ground all raspberry and blackberry canes which have just fruited.
Pruning the spent canes encourages continued spur development on canes which have grown this summer meaning a better fruit yield.
Also, prune out any pencil thin and dead canes to encourage more light into the plant for more vigor.
Apply Espoma’s Hollytone at recommended label instructions to provide nutrients.
• It is time to move your potted amaryllis indoors to a cool spot and begin the three-month dormant cycle.
You must withhold all water and fertilizers during this time.
It is also recommended that you simply turn the pot on its side and allow the foliage to dry naturally, and it will also remind you not to water.
All the nutrients from the stalks will return to the bulb.
If the plant has fewer than six stalks, leave the plant outdoors for another four weeks and feed it with Jack’s classic fertilizer every other week.
• Watch for unusual low nighttime temperatures (in the 50s) if you have taken your Christmas cactus outdoors for the summer. If these temperatures are a possibility bring these plants indoors, unless you want your cactus to be a Halloween cactus and bloom in late October.
• Bagworms and tent caterpillars are very active now.
Inspect all evergreens, especially leylands, junipers, arborvitae, pines, and spruces for bagworms.
They are able to completely decimate a tree if left unchecked.
Spray with Bonide’s Thuricide, a biological control that is sure death to all caterpillars and worms.
• Control Blackspot on roses by removing fallen leaves, pruning out diseased twigs, and avoid wetting the leaves.
Use Bonide’s Infuse every 10 to 14 days to help control this disease.
For longer controls use Bonide’s Rose RX Drench which will protect the plant from disease and insects for six weeks.
• Begin planning and preparing in-ground plants now that will be dug up, put in containers and brought indoors.
Plants such as basil, thyme, rosemary, coleus, geraniums, lantana, Impatiens, wax begonias, and even New Guinea Impatiens may do well if brought inside before frost.
(Editor’s Note: Ken Morgan is owner of Robin’s Nest Floral and Garden Center in Easton, Md.)