(Updated version of news article for July 11, 2019)
Those of us working in Extension see patterns in the phone calls that we get over the course of the year. We get a lot of calls during the spring, as people get excited about their lawns and gardens and start seeing problems in them. Then, there comes a time of year when it seems like people are largely “over it.”
During this time of year when working outside in the garden isn’t as pleasurable, you might consider using the time to do some garden-related reading. The LSU AgCenter has a lot of resources that address a variety of topics, and there are certain ones that we give out repeatedly.
As you sit in the cool of your house or on your porch, here are some resources that you might take time to read in preparation for a fall garden or for fall planting of trees and shrubs. These publications are available on the LSU AgCenter website.
The Louisiana Vegetable Planting Guide contains just about all of the information you need to plant a home vegetable garden. It provides information such as what cultivars (cultivated varieties) of specific vegetables are recommended, when to plant, and how much and when to fertilize. If you would like to plant your garden in a raised bed, also look for the Raised Beds publication, which is part of the Home Garden Series.
The Louisiana Home Orchard publication has basic information on growing a wide variety of fruit crops, ranging from blueberries and muscadines to mayhaws and peaches. Like the vegetable gardening publication, it includes cultivar and fertilizer recommendations, as well as planting information. It also has information on training/pruning and some common pest issues.
While the Louisiana Home Orchard publication covers a wide range of fruit crops, there are resources that provide more in-depth information about several popular fruit crops. These include Louisiana Home Citrus Production, Home Blueberry Production in Louisiana, Growing Blackberries for Pleasure and Profit, and Figs for Commercial and Home Production in Louisiana. We also have a fact sheet about growing strawberries that is part of the Vegetable Gardening Tips series (accessible through this site).
The vegetable and fruit resources mentioned above are all available online or from our local offices, at no charge to you. The LSU AgCenter also offers Louisiana Home Fruit and Nut Production (79 pages) and Louisiana Home Vegetable Gardening (121 pages) books for $20 each. To order one of these, go to https://store.lsuagcenter.com/ or call 225-578-2263.
In the lawns and landscapes arena, some popular publications include Louisiana Lawns Best Management Practices, Trees for Louisiana Landscapes, and Shrubs for Louisiana Landscapes. For those who would like to have a garden that is both attractive and supports pollinating insects important to fruit and vegetable production, we have Pollinator Gardening in Louisiana, which is part of the Urban Pollinator Conservation Series, as well as Use of Flowering Plants, which is part of the Protecting Pollinators in Urban Areas series.
These are just a few of the many resources that we have. Contact us if you have questions.