The KPRC Radio Gardenline Tip By Randy Lemmon For 04-14-05 Printer-Friendly Version
GardenLine Staple Products...
I get poked fun at a lot by friends, family and long-time listeners of the GardenLine program about suggesting certain products "all the time."
You've even heard my producers, over the years, try to answer a question or two with "Medina Hasta Gro." I too have also poked fun at other so-called gardening programs throughout the statefor "only recommending" those products that are big sponsors of such programs.
And because I don't want to sound hypocritical about my recommendations, let me set the record straight about some of these product recommendations. Recently, I've had people ask me "what are the must-have products you recommend?" So, that's what this week's tips is going to be about.
First, however, let me say that I've always made reference to "GARDENLINE STAPLE PRODUCTS" that I believe every GardenLine listener should have on their shelves. Yes, some of these companies are or have been sponsors of my program and some have never been. The point is -- I don't recommend them as "staple" products just because they sponsor the program. I recommend them because they work. Also, keep in mind that although a product or service may sponsor the program, it doesn't automatically mean I recommend the product blindly. Again, the staple products are recommended because they work. One last thought about sponsoring versus vested interests.
The promise I will always make to you when doing GardenLine is: While the sponsors help the program out financially, I do not have a vested interest or financial stake in any of these companies. They pay the radio station for advertising purposes, and the radio station pays me. I never have and never will receive "kick-backs" or under-the-table "greasing" from any of these companies to recommend their products. My vested interest is in you, the listener. It's also sad to say, but the greasing and financially vested interests rule the day in many other gardening programs on the radio these days. And that is just the nature of the business.
So, without further ado, here are the four (4) types of products I believe every GardenLine Listener should have on their shelves. I realize there are many more products I talk about each and every weekend. These just so happen to be the four products that are "must-haves" if you're trying to make me proud - er, uhm... I mean trying to make yourself proud of your lawn and landscape. And if you agree or don't agree, let me hear from you about what probably could be added to or even taken away from this GARDENLINE STAPLE LIST.
Medina Hasta Gro -- Or, any balanced liquid organic fertilizer. Or any liquid organic fertilizer that you can use as a soil drench, transplant solution or foliar feed. This can be fed to any plant at anytime without risk of burning the foliage or the roots. And while Medina Hasta Gro is not by definition a pure organic fertilizer, it sure comes close enough and is what many true organics-minded people use. I use it as a "transplant solution" mostly. I dip the root ball of whatever I'm putting into the garden first into the Median Hasta Gro solution. It's also one of the most perfect vegetable foods on the market today, because of its organic slant.
Consan Triple Action 20 - Or any Consan-based fungicide blend. Consan hasn't sponsored the program for years, but they're still the only triple-headed monster of its kind that works as a Fungicide, Bactericide and Algaecide in one product, which is why I recommend them without their being a sponsor. It works on fungal diseases, bacteria problems and helps erase algae forming where you don't want it. Plus, one bottle lasts forever, since you only use an ounce per gallon of water at the most. The great majority of prescribed solutions are a teaspoon of Consan to a gallon of water. It works on brownpatch, leaf spot, black spot on roses, fire blight, rust, pythium blight, etc. etc. etc.
Nelson Plant Food's - Color Star - Or, any "slow- release blooming" plant food such as Carl Pool's Colorscapes or Fertilome's Start-N-Grow. In years past, to keep blooming annuals and perennials looking their best you needed to fertilizer them once every two weeks or once a month at the very least with the water-soluble plant foods. With the slow release blooming plant foods, you really only have to feed them once every three months. It works on roses, crape myrtles and any flowering perennial or annual you can try to grow. It also works on hostas, caladiums, coleus and other "non-flowering" color pockets we love in Texas.
Any 3-1-2/4-1-2 Slow Release Lawn Foods - If you're a GardenLine aficionado you should already be familiar with these staples such as Nitro Phos Super Turf, Easy Gro , Mr. C's Finest (Cornelius' proprietary blend) or Fertilome Southwest Greenmaker. First, and foremost, they are designed for our climate. Secondly, they make perfect fertilizers for all evergreen plants as well. Thus, you don't have to spend extra money for a specific tree or shrub fertilizer if you don't want to . They are made in Texas, and they are designed to be slow-release enough so as not to cause problems with over-use burns or invitations to brownpatch. You can also include the many, and recently more cost-effective granular organic soil foods into this equation as well. Anything from Garden-Ville, Lady Bug Natural or Maestro Gro, just to name a few.
Until next issue, here's to
Great Gardening from the GardenLine, heard
exclusively weekend mornings from 8 to noon
on Talkradio 950 KPRC.