Collier's Garden Scoop
January 2017

Happy New Year!

January Hours
Monday - Saturday
9 to 5
Closed Sunday 

The nursery has reopened after a two week break for the holidays! We sold out of nearly everything during the half-off sale that took place before Christmas, which gave us the opportunity to bring in several large shipments of fresh, healthy plants to start off the new year. As you can see in the photo below, the greenhouse is once again full of cool-season color and indoor blooms & foliage. Brand new shipments of pansies, violas, snapdragons, primrose, orchids and houseplants are in stock, waiting to find their way into your home or garden. Two large shrub shipments also arrive this week, including 12 varieties of camellias, conifers, evergreen & deciduous shrubs and trees. The forecast shows spring-like weather for this weekend which will be a relief after the icy conditions last weekend- got to love our fickle Alabama weather! Stop by and enjoy the warm sunshine while it lasts, and the surprising variety of plants to be found at Collier's during January. We hope to see you soon!

Unusual Winter Finds 
Late winter and early spring are the only times of the year that you will see these two beauties at the nursery. Anemones and stock bloom during cool weather and fizzle out once temps heat up later in the spring. Both are in store now and covered in blooms!  

Poppy-flowered anemone
Anemone coronaria 
Cool-season annual or short-lived perennial in zones 7 to 10. Grows from a tuberous rhizome.
Matthiola incana
Old-fashioned cottage garden plants valued for sweet fragrance and cutting.
Cool-season annual.

Drought Update 
Although rain has become more frequent over the last month, central Alabama is still in the midst of an extreme drought (check out current conditions across the state here).   

Many gardeners are wondering about evergreens that are turning or have turned brown- things like arborvitae, magnolias and hollies. Here's what Jim Jacobi of the Jefferson County Extension Service has to say about this:

"In many cases I think the plants are dead, especially the evergreens like arborvitae. I've visited several landscapes in the last few months and examined several hollies and magnolias. I'm not finding much green wood on plants where all leaves are brown- the roots were probably also killed. I'm telling folks to be patient and wait till spring to see what happens [then] prune or remove plants as needed."

Jimmy Collier describes this drought as "historic," pointing out that we went without rain from early August to late November- a third of the year! He adds that while established plants nearly always make it through "normal" droughts, "any plant- other than a cactus- would've had a good chance of dying in this weather."

Evergreens were especially hard-hit because they couldn't shed leaves like deciduous plants can in order to cope with the lack of water. Jimmy agrees with Jim Jacobi that "conifers that are brown are more than likely gone for good."

However, he goes on to say there is hope for other plants that "have dormant buds down the stems that will re-sprout and 'start over' when the conditions are right- the conifers don't have dormant buds. They could come back from the roots but that is their only chance."

So, how do you find out if your plant is dead? Jimmy suggests "cutting at the tip of a branch...if it's brittle that part is dead, so keep working down that branch until the inside wood is white or green and not brittle." Then, wait and see if the plant puts out leaves this spring- you should begin to see signs of new growth by mid-April.  Fertilizing trees and shrubs with Hi-Yield Grower's Special in early April (not any sooner) will encourage growth. 

January Lawn Care

Apply Hi-Yield Turf & Ornamental Weed & Grass Stopper to Zoysia and Bermuda lawns this month.

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Collier's Nursery 
2904 Old Rocky Ridge Road
Birmingham, AL 35243