Discover the Fun of Gardening
The Kerby's E-Newsletter
April 26, 2018   
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Garden Tip   |   Featured Plants   |   Spring Workshops  

It's harvest season!

How are your gardens growing? The end of April typically brings the beginning of harvest season for warm-season vegetabes like tomatoes, peppers and squash. In our home garden, most of our veggies have started producing, and last week we picked our first batch of Black Krim heirloom tomatoes. They were actually kind of a surprise. We've been watching our tomato plants and (once we protected them from the chickens) each day new tomatoes are setting and the existing green ones get larger and larger. But one morning as I was poking around the garden, I happened to pull up some leaves at the bottom of the plants, and there were four deliciously-vine-ripe Black Krims - our first of the season. That evening we sampled them with just a pinch of black truffle salt, a delicate splash of olive oil and of course, fresh mozzarella. Delish. Now we check every day for newly ripening tomatoes and are at battle with the various pests trying to sneak a taste of our harvests.

And as we move towards summertime, it isn't just a time to harvest from veggie gardens. Many fruit trees are beginning to produce now too.
Picking mulberries.
Blueberries are ripening, peaches should start to get some size, avocados and mangos are setting (if they made it through the cold), but one of our favorites (especially the girl's) is the everbearing mulberry. It's a great little tree - it didn't mind the cold and it is already loaded down with what must be a thousand berries. Abby and Maddy's new favorite thing to do in the yard is to run out and climb up the mulberry tree to see what has ripened. We had to position two stepladders under the tree so that the girls could pick the ripe fruits without climbing the tree (branches were starting to break). When I was a kid, my siblings and I would sit in an old peach tree and eat peaches until our shirts were wet with juice. It's great to see our girls carrying on that tradition.

I know you'd love to get great harvests from your own personal fruit forest. If you don't know how to get started, or just want to learn a little more about caring for fruit trees, come out this Saturday for the Fruit Tree Workshop at 10am. We'll talk about the different fruits that grow well in the area, we'll go over planting, fertilizing and general care as well as cold protection just in case we have another cold winter. Hope to see you then.

Happy Gardening,
The Kerby's Nursery Family

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We'll show you how to get great harvests.
Garden Tip
Cultivating Great Harvests

When you plant shrubs and trees in your landscape, you probably plant them well, keep them watered, but at some point, you probably ignore them a little bit. After all, they are just a plain-old shrubs or trees, and while you want them to grow, you aren't always looking for much else from them. That story is different when it comes to fruit trees. You want fruit trees to grow, bloom and harvest as much as possible. That means you need to pay a little extra attention to them. So make sure you are following our tips below to get the best harvests possible.
1) Don't Plant Deep - It's easy to be super-excited about your new trees and get wild with the shovel and dig a way-to-deep hole. Trees want to be planted level or slightly above the existing soil level. Plant too deep and trees will never establish well.
2) Start Trees with Great Soil
- Healthy trees have healthy roots, and healthy roots love Kerby's Planting Soil. Mix new soil at a 50/50 ratio with the native soil. 
3) Water Well - Sometimes I feel like a broken records saying Water, Water, Water, but watering is critical for everything you do in your garden (including for you!). Consistent, deep waterings will make sure that your tree gets established well.
4) Plant for Pollinators - Bees are the primary pollinator for a variety of fruit trees. To encourage bees to come to your fruit forest, plant some of their favorite flowers: Salvias, Heather and Summer Snapdragon to name a few.
5) Watch for Pests - Fruits need insects to pollinate, but sometimes the wrong kinds of bugs will find your trees too. Spraying on a regular basis when the trees are not flowering can help keep pests away. Our favorite sprays: Neem Oil or Captain Jack's Deadbug Brew. 
6) Feed your Tree - To really boost a tree's health, ferilize regularly. Use Kerby's 8-4-8 fertilizer monthly in the first year and in spring, summer and fall for the second year and beyond. A spring application of a minor elements spray can also be helpful to make sure a tree has all the nutrients it needs to produce great harvests.

When you love your garden, it's not work, it's play, so get outside and get your hands dirty, have a little fun and bring on the great harvests.
Featured Plants
Lychee Trees

Sweet, delicious and refreshing
Starting at $49.99

Fruiting Now
Starting at $9.99
Sunshine Ligustrum

Back in stock for Cold-Hardy Color
10" Pot - $29.99

Kerby's Nursery

2311 S. Parsons Ave.

Seffner, FL 33584
(813) 685-3265

Store Hours
Open Seven Days a Week
Monday - Saturday,  9am - 5:30pm
Sunday,  11am - 4pm