- Consider mature size when selecting a tree or shrub for a location. This will save you a lifetime of pruning a too-big plant to fit in a too-small space.
- Wait to plant azaleas or crape myrtles until spring, when you can buy plants in flower to ensure you're getting the exact hue you want.
- Water new woody plantings daily for the first month. After that, check soil and water when it's dry.
- Plant peonies now. Use variants with reliable reputations for Southern gardens: 'Sarah Bernhardt' (pink) and 'Festiva Maxima' (white). Be sure to choose a permanent planting spot -- these beauties resent being moved.
- Consider creating drifts of small-flowered daffodils. These types naturalize readily in Southern gardens, woods, and lawns.
- Try using herbs to add edible interest to planting areas. Great candidates include parsley, chard, and French sorrel.
- Get strawberries in the ground early this month so roots are firmly anchored and growing before soil cools.
Test Garden Tip: Plant amaryllis for pretty holiday color. You can tuck bulbs into pots or simply grow them on pebbles in water like paper-white narcissus. Plant a few extra bulbs to give as gifts.
Continued on page 2: Lawn Care