Discover the Fun of Gardening
The Kerby's E-Newsletter
January 11, 2018   
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Featured Plant   |   Garden Tip   |   Just In  

Even covered, our tomatoes were pretty badly damaged.

I'm sure you've heard of the Never Have I Ever game. It's a fun icebreaker where someone says 'Never Have I Ever . . .' and completes the sentence with something they've never done. Everyone else has to admit to whether they have or haven't done that thing. Last week, I saw a funny Never Have I Ever gardening edition that included things like Never Have I Ever talked to my plants, chased a butterfly or worn garden boots with pajamas. We can all probably relate to doing those things. Well, last week while I was protecting my garden for the impending cold weather, I came up with another one. Never Have I Ever . . . used my kids bedsheets to protect plants. I'm sorry to say that I can't say I've never done that anymore. After protecting my fruit trees, I realized that my tomatoes and peppers weren't covered, so I rummaged through the laundry and found some bedsheets and decided they would work just fine. Turns out they were for the kid's beds. Whoops. Sadly the tomatoes didn't make it (fortunately, we harvested everything off the plant before the cold.) The peppers have some damage, but seem like they will recover, so I think it was worth sacrificing a few sheets.

Even protected, we all probably sustained a bit of cold damage in our gardens and landscapes. For those of you relatively new to the area, this kind of freeze was the norm in the 80s, 90s and early 2000s, but since 2011, we haven't had an actual freeze in our area, so we were kind of overdue. See the garden tip below to learn about First Aid for Freeze Damage. And after you've taken care of your damaged plants, don't forget that it is still a great time for planting. In fact it is the ideal time of year for planting crape myrtles, camellias, azaleas, roses, hardy fruits trees including peaches, apples, pears and nectarines, and lots of other hardy shrubs. There are also plenty of cold hardy flowers like pansies, snapdragons and petunias that smile right on through any cold Florida can throw at them. So don't get the winter blues wishing you could be out in the garden. Get out there! The weather is cool, the air is dry. What a wonderful time to take advantage of living in Florida and get outside for some fun in the garden.

Happy Gardening,
The Kerby's Nursery Family

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Camellias winter blooms brighten up the cool season garden.
Featured Plant
Camellia sasanqua and japonica

The camellia is a classic southern flower that stands tall and proud, even when freezing temperatures reach our area. Sasanqua varieties are in full bloom now, and the japonicas will soon follow with large flowers in white, pink or red. They are a great centerpiece for areas in your garden that receive bright morning sun and afternoon shade. Plant with rich soil (camellias like the soil a little on the acid side) and year after year you will have beautiful blooms when the rest of your garden is taking a break.
My poor mango tree! It was covered, but the cold still damaged it a little bit.
Garden Tip
 First Aid for Freeze Damamge

After 6 winters without a freeze, we finally got one. Although the temperature never got below 27, three cold nights in a row took their toll on more sensitive plants. The biggest advice we give to people when they call about freeze damage is to be patient. Your first instinct will be to run out and prune away all the damage. But don't do it yet. Be patient and let's get a little closer to spring. Then you'll prune and fertilize to get flush of spring growth. Right now, those dead leaves and branches will provide a little insulation if we do have another cold snap. And if we do get another frost or freeze, plants that have been pruned would sustain another (and probably worse) round of damage. Read more here about First Aid for Freeze Damage. And don't worry, spring will be here before you know it.
Just In
Ivy Geranium Baskets

Beautiful baskets of bright color.
10" Basket - $16.99
Double Knockout Roses

These beauties bloom right through the winter.
10" Pot - $29.99

Fiddle Leaf Fig

Large, fiddle shaped leaves help clean the air in your home.
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,  9:00am - 5:00pm
Sunday,  11:00am - 4:00pm