Now is the Time,
Kerby's is the Place

October 17, 2013   

A loofa growing on a vine in Kim and Joey's garden. The bottom corner shows what the sponges look like once dried.

As part of our veggie garden this year, we planted some loofa seeds. It's such a cool plant. It vines like a cucumber, but the fruits (which also look a bit like cucumbers) have a surprise inside. They aren't edible when mature, but when you dry them and remove the skin, you get a sponge. Growing up, we used to grow loofas up our carport and we always had plenty of sponges to go around. It's fun seeing them grow in our garden now and remembering gardens of the past. That's what makes gardening so much fun isn't it. Every new garden is filled with memories of gardens past, as well as the promises of gardens of the future. Plus you get the beauty of today's garden and the feeling of accomplishment when you've finished it. Make the most of this autumn weather and get outside today.

Pink Perfection Camellia. A perfectly shaped flower in a gorgeous pink color. Camellias will be blooming soon.
And if you need something to do in the garden, now is a great time of year for planting camellias, and Kerby's has lots of beautiful plants in stock. To really get a great start on your camellia garden, come out this Saturday at 10am to Kerby's for the camellia workshop. We'll talk about picking the right location, planting properly (which is important for camellias) and general pruning and care. Camellias planted now, will be blooming soon with gorgeous, eye-catching blooms.

Happy Gardening,
The Kerby's Nursery Family

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In This Issue

Featured Plant

Growing Camellias

Upcoming Events
This Saturday, October 19th, 10am Workshop: Growing Camellias

New Arrivals

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Get Bamboo-zled

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Pine Straw Bales
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Fall-Blooming Cassia
8/10" Pot - $14.99
14" Tree - $59.99
Featured Plant
Fall-blooming Cassia
Cassia bicapsularis

A stunner for sure. Fall-blooming cassias are starting to bloom now all around town. The show of blooms is amazing each year, and makes quite the landscape showpiece. They grow on average 6 to 10 feet tall and should be planted in four or more hours of sun. As if that's not enough, they are a host plant for Sulphur butterflies, so you'll also see beautiful butterflies hovering around the cassia.

Growing Camellias

For nearly 200 years, camellias have been a fixture in southern gardens. As landscape centerpieces or foundation plantings, they pull a garden together and their blooms bring a bit of cheer during the winter, when their color is warmly received.

Varieties: Camellias come in a variety of shapes, sizes and colors. From formal pinks to loose, ruffled reds, there is a look and a style for everyone. There are also two main varieties of camellias: sasanquas and japonicas. The sasanqua varieties tend to bloom from late fall to early winter and are usually compact, arching bushes. Some of our favorite sasanquas are  Cotton Candy (a beautiful semi-double pink) and Stephanie Golden (a light pink single). The japonica varieties bloom in winter and early spring, and include many shapes and sizes, including Pink Perfection, a perfectly formed, formal double flower! If you have room for more than one camellia, try planting multiple varieties that bloom at different times for color from October to May.

Plant Characteristics: Camellias are slow growing, eventually reaching six to eight feet tall and four to six feet wide. They need very little pruning, but make sure they have room to grow to their full potential. If pruning is needed, do it in early fall before blooms start to set.

Location: Camellias thrive best in part shade, and in an area that has good air circulation. Four hours of morning sun is ideal. Avoid too much afternoon sun, which is intense and hot, and can cause the leaves to burn.

Soil: Camellias love a rich, well-drained acidic soil such as Kerby's Pulverized Pine Soil. The more soil you can turn into the planting hole and surrounding area, the better your camellias will grow. Camellias do not like wet soil, so make sure that the area drains well, even after heavy rains.

Planting: The ideal time to plant camellias is during the winter months, so that their roots can become established before summertime. It's also the time that many are blooming, so you'll get to enjoy some beautiful winter and spring color. For more planting and watering instructions, see Caring for New Plants.


Upcoming Events



Workshop: Growing Camellias in Florida
Saturday, October 19th at 10am  

Camellias are a classic southern flower and they brighten shady areas in the fall, winter and early spring. We'll talk about planting and caring for camellias to keep them at their best. And we'll touch on other classic shrubs like azaleas and gardenias which tend to like similar conditions to the camellia.





Workshop: Fall Container Gardening

Saturday, October 26th at 10am

Creating a beautiful container garden is easy and is a simple way to decorate any doorway, porch or patio. At this demonstration/workshop we'll demonstrate how to create beautiful arrangements that will make everyone who visits your home smile, plus you'll get all the pointers you need to create your own beautiful container garden.

Workshop : Herb Gardening
Saturday, November 2nd at 10am

Without herbs, food would just be boring! And of course the best herbs come straight from your own garden. At this workshop, we'll show you the best ways to plant and care for your herb garden and we'll show you which herbs are great to plant now. Plus we'll share tips on preserving and storing herbs. Discover how delicious gardening can be! 





Workshop: Protecting Plants and Winter Gardening
Saturday, November 9th at 10am

Florida is known for warm weather and sunshine, but even here in central Florida, the occasional frost or freeze comes our way. Be ready this year, by attending this workshop. You'll learn the best ways to protect plants from cold weather and we'll demonstrate the proper way to cover plants to make sure all of your favorite shrubs, trees and flowers are warm and snug this winter. We'll also talk about what to do in the garden at this time of year, after all it is Florida and we can play in the yard all year long!




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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