The Kerby's Nursery E-Newsletter
April 4, 2019   
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The Weekly Special  |   Growing Bamboo  |   New Arrivals    |  2019 Workshops

Abby rides again.

Abby finally got the hang of riding a bike this week. For some reason, it's been a long process for her. It doesn't help that our house is right next to a busy road, so there isn't a convenient place to just go outside and ride. The driveway is only big enough for a tight circle and not long enough to get any momentum going and practice your balance. But Kim was determined that this was the year that Abby would learn to ride a bike, and Nana and Papa live in a neighborhood that has a quiet street and sidewalks. So one evening, we took the bike over and encouraged Abby to give it a try.

About a year ago, a friend helped her get comfortable riding, first on one of those balance bikes without pedals, that you just kind of push yourself along on, and then on her regular bike. She was able to ride a bit on that day, but then afterwards she was nervous about us letting go and riding on her own. (There is probably a life lesson in there about learning to let go, but that's too deep for this newsletter. . .) However, this time around, Kim took her to a nice long straightaway, held Abby up as she started pedaling and in about five minutes Abby was riding up and down the street. It took her a few tries to get used to braking, turning and going over bumps, but now she just hops on and rides like it was nothing. Mission accomplished. Now it is Maddy's turn to learn to ride and then maybe they can come with me on some off road biking adventures.

A peek at the bamboo farm.
It wasn't a biking adventure, but I did have a little adventure of my own this week. We've had a number of requests for bamboo plants, but were having a hard time finding any good local growers. So I decided to take a trip across the state to a bamboo farm. When I pulled in, I was greeted by acres and acres of bamboo in all sorts of varieties and sizes. It was a lot of Zen to take in all at once. I got to tour the farm and I packed the truck to the gills with cool varieties of bamboo.

So, if you need to block out a pesky neighbor or are just looking for a little privacy for your backyard retreat, we've got you covered. Come check out the beautiful bamboo and see below for care and planting information to make sure your bamboo grows its best.

Also, thanks to those of you who came out last weekend for the Rose Gardening Seminar. If you missed it, we've uploaded (most) of it to the Kerby's Nursery YouTube channel. The seminar went a little longer than anticipated, so it cut off towards the end. We'll re-record the next time to make sure the full seminar is posted. Have another great week in the garden.

Happy Gardening,
The Kerby's Nursery Family

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The Weekly Special
BeeBright Pentas
2 for $10
6" Pot, Regular Price - $6.99
Offer valid through 4/14/19

You know pentas are butterfly magnets. But this penta is extra special. It only grows 12 to 14 inches tall and blooms continuously almost all year long. Add butterfly magic to your garden and save a little money at the same time. This week, they are just 2 for $10.

A few closeups of the cool varieties of bamboo.

Garden Tip
Growing Bamboo

Bamboo is an interesting plant. It is a type of grass and although it is quite fast-growing, its growth is concentrated into just a few months out of the year. Another fun fact about bamboo: it only flowers every 60 to 130 years depending on the species. Not only is it a rare occurence, but since most bamboo is grown from root divisions, when the mother plant begins to bloom, almost all of the root divisions that came from the same plant will also bloom, no matter where in the world they are.

1) Pick the correct spot - Often when it comes to picking the right location, sun is the most important consideration. And that is true with bamboo. It needs to be planted in full sun with at least 5 to 6 hours of direct sunlight each day. You should also avoid areas that have a lot of standing water. However, the most important consideration for bamboo is the space that you have. All of the varieties that Kerby's carries are clumping types, but over time they can form large clumps. The good news is that there are many different sizes of bamboo, so make sure you pick one that fits the space you are planting in.

2) Planting - To plant bamboo, dig a hole twice as wide as the rootball, but not quite as deep.  Set the bamboo in the hole so that a quarter of the root ball is up out of the ground. Backfill the hole with a 50/50 mix of Kerby's Planting Soil and native soil. Mound the soil up until it is level with the rootball.

3) Mulch - To help retain moisture and encourage growth, mulch the entire mound area with 2 to 3 inches of mulch. Any type of wood mulch is fine - pine bark, cypress or pine straw.

4) Water - Bamboo is a grass and just like your lawn, it needs plenty of water. For the first month, water bamboo deeply each day, always in the morning. In the second month, water every other day and in the third month, water twice each week. After the thrid month, keep the watering at twice each week when it is hot and just once per week when it is cool. Leaf wilt, curl or drop are all signs that you aren't giving your bamboo enough water. 

4) Food - In order to maximize its growth, bamboo needs plenty of food. Fertilizer monthly with The Kerby's Special through the first growing season. For year two and beyond, fertilize in spring, summer and fall. To really get your bamboo growing, a supplement of Blood Meal in the spring and summer is helpful.

5) Bamboo Growth - Bamboo is a fast grower, but it only grows shoots for about two months out of the year, usually following the start of our rainy season. After shoot growth, branches and leaves will start to develop. Don't be surprised when its fast growth is concentrated into a short season.

6) Enjoy - Bamboo makes a wonderful privacy screen and with the beautiful varieties available, it can also make a gorgeous landscape centerpiece. However you use it, it will add a little zen to your landscape.

New Arrivals
Dwarf Butterfly Bush

A Butterfly Favorite
10" Pot - $19.99
Blueberry Plants

Start your Fruit Forest
6" Pot - $10.99
Pincushion Flower

Great for Pollinators
6" Pot - $5.99

Kerby's Nursery

2311 S. Parsons Ave.

Seffner, FL 33584
(813) 685-3265

Store Hours

Monday - Saturday,  9am - 5:30pm
Sunday,  11am - 4pm