October E-News from Viette's                          Volume 9: No. 10

Lori Jones, Editor                                                                                           October/2013

Beautiful fall harvest display on the front porch steps at Viette's  
October comes alive with the bright colors of the fall season! 

Hardy mums, pumpkins and gourds, hay bales, colorful perennials, bright colored leaves, whispering ornamental grasses ...

Visit Viette's in October!

Our gardens are full of color;  
from the bright blooms of Asters
and Japanese anemones
to the colorful berries of the
Callicarpa and winterberry hollies.

It's a glorious sight to see! 
Quick Link
The Viette gardens are full of color in the fall!
Visit our
Fall Gardens
Plan a visit to Viette's
in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley and enjoy a pleasant walk through our fall gardens!
Our gardens are ALWAYS OPEN for you to enjoy!
All potted perennials, including Andre's
hybrid daylilies are
30% OFF  
through October
at Viette's!

Garden Center Hours:
Mon-Sat - 9:00-5:00
Sunday - 1:00-5:00

Plant of the Month
Chrysanthemum 'Viette's Pink Sport'
A beautiful pink hardy mum
Super Hardy
Fall "Mums"  
Colorful "mums" for  
your gardens that will  
bloom every fall for  
years to come! 
Just as the poinsettia has come to represent the Christmas holiday season, the brightly colored fall blooming "mums" have become a symbol of autumn along with pumpkins, gourds, and hay bales!
From grocery stores to garden centers, these colorful plants can be found everywhere shouting:
"Fall is Here!"  
Hardy chrysanthemums come in many colors like this beautiful yellow.
Hardy chrysanthemums come in many different colors.
For the shrewd gardener, the October gardens can come alive each year with the colorful blooms of super hardy mums in an array of pinks, apricots, reds, and yellows. These long-lived hardy forms are a delight both in the garden and as long-lasting cut flowers.
Hardy chrysanthemums bring color to the fall garden!
Hardy chrysanthemums bring color to the fall garden each year!
Lots of Choices
The diversity of flower form and colors of hardy mums is quite large if you shop at a reliable nursery or garden center. Choices range from single or semi-double daisy forms to charming fully double button-type flowers in various fall-like colors!
Chrysanthemum 'Viette's Apricot Glow' is a super hardy fall
Loads of color choices!

Buy Hardy Varieties
Be aware that most of the mums you can buy in the fall are not winter hardy in colder regions. So ...
How can you tell if you have chosen a hardy variety or one of the more tender "florist mums"?
  • A good garden center should be able to tell you if the mum is winter hardy.
  • Check the label -
    if it doesn't provide hardiness information, it probably isn't a hardy variety.
  • Look for basal shoots or stolons at the base of the plant. If you see these young shoots, then it is probably one of the hardier varieties.
Chrysanthemum 'Ryan's Pink' is a super hardy fall
Chrysanthemum 'Ryan's Pink' is a super hardy fall "mum".
Growing Hardy Mums
Hardy mums grow best in full sun or light shade and well-drained soil. Poorly drained, wet soil is fatal to these perennials - especially during the winter! Maintain 2" - 3" of mulch around the plants to protect the crown and prevent heaving in the winter. It is best to plant them from spring through early fall so they can establish a strong root system before the first frost. Keep them well watered after planting; DO NOT allow them to dry out.
Chrysanthemum 'Viette's Apricot Glow' is a super hardy fall
A beautiful pumpkin-colored
hardy mum
Shearing and Pinching
To keep your plants nice and compact with lots of blooms, shear or pinch them back by about 1/3 when the reach about 6" tall and again when the new growth reaches 3"-5" tall. Do not pinch back after mid-July.
After frost finally kills the last blossoms, shear the flowers off but allow the old foliage to remain over the winter to protect the crown. Cut this foliage back in the spring being careful not to disturb the new growth.

on choosing and growing hardy chrysanthemums. 
Beautiful super hardy chrysanthemums will come back year after year.
Chrysanthemum 'Venus' will bloom year after year in the garden!
Giant Pumpkin Weigh-In
Here's the scoop on the Giant Pumpkin Contest at the Virginia State Fair. William's pumpkin weighed in at a whopping 629 pounds. It was not enough to break his state record pumpkin of 1138 pounds from 2007. Even weighing in at 629 lbs, it was not enough for first place. He placed second this year. Bummer! The first place giant pumpkin weighed in at a hefty 750 pounds! 
better luck next year! 
Join Our List

Visit our Friends
Mulberry Hills Farm
 Mulberry Hills Farm Pumpkin Patch
A family farming operation that specializes in growing a wide variety of pumpkins and gourds.

 Choose from a large selection of pumpkins
 Pre-picked and
Pick Your Own
In addition, find all your fall decorating needs like straw, mums, Indian corn, and corn shocks.
Located 8 miles south
of Harrisonburg

6442 Cross Keys Road
Mt. Crawford, VA 22841
Visit their website

Tip of the Month

Keeping Unwanted "Bugs" Out of the House     


"Help! Stink bugs are swarming all over my house!"   


Well - it's that time of year again!  

The days and nights are  beginning to become cooler and that means some nasty bugs are going to start looking for a place to spend the cold winter months. In many cases that nice warm, cozy place that they find may very well be your house! Our phones are already beginning to ring off the hook and the e-mails are pouring in!   

And unfortunately it's only going to get worse! 


Adult stink bug
Stink bugs will soon be trying to
get into your house!

Stink Bugs

The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (Halyomorpha halys) has not only become an annoying invader of our homes but their populations have exploded to the point that they have become a major threat to many agricultural crops including both ornamentals like roses and food crops like tomatoes, peppers, and various fruits. 

Native to Asia, the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is a relative newcomer to the US being first reported in Pennsylvania in 1998. Since then their numbers and range have slowly increased and they are now found in 30 different US states and are still on the move.
Late September and October is the time of year that these nasty pests begin to look for overwintering sites. At this time of year they can often be found clinging to the sides of buildings where they typically congregate around windows and doors seeking a place to get in. Stink bugs will squeeze into small cracks and crevices around air conditioning units, chimneys, attic vents, door and window frames, and gaps or holes in the foundation.
Keeping them out!

Because this particular species of stink bug is having such an impact on fruit and vegetable crops, a lot of research is being directed towards developing control methods. Some of this research is focusing on natural enemies and pheromone traps in addition to chemical controls. For the time being, exclusion is one of the best preventative measures for controlling populations indoors. Carefully examine the foundation and around windows and doors for cracks and crevices where they can sneak into the house. They will seek out these entry points in an attempt to find a suitable overwintering site. Use caulk and weather stripping to seal any cracks.
Control products
Indoor control: Bonide Household Insect Control kills stink bugs on contact but also has some residual action that creates a relatively effective barrier around windows, doors, and other areas where they might gain entrance to your home.
Outdoor control: Bonide Eight can be used outdoors to control stink bugs on ornamental plants as well as vegetable crops and fruit trees. It can be applied to building foundations and to spot treat cracks and crevices according to the label directions.

Stink bug traps
have also been developed. Some like Bonide Stink Bug Traps, which can be used indoors or out, or the Rescue Reusable Stink Bug Trap use pheromones to attract and trap the bugs. The Rescue Stink Bug Trap has an optional light attachment to attract and trap stink bugs that have made their way into your home. I've never tried the traps but if you have large numbers of stink bugs in your home, they might be worth a try!

Adult boxelder bug. Photo by Joseph Berger,
Adult boxelder bug.
Joseph Berger,

Boxelder Bugs

The boxelder bug is another nuisance insect that can invade your home in droves in the fall. Like the stink bugs, they are seeking protected overwintering sites and your warm home fits the bill perfectly! Boxelder bugs are not major pests of plants and though in some years they may appear in great numbers, they are not necessarily found in abundance every year. They become a nuisance mainly when they enter homes and buildings in the late fall. Adults and immature nymphs can often be found together at any time during the summer and fall. When the weather begins to cool in the early fall, these insects congregate in warm places in the garden such as rock walls, log piles, and stone statuary.

Boxelder bug nymphs
Boxelder bug nymphs swarming
on a statue in the garden.

At this time of year in the Viette gardens, boxelder bugs are often found swarming over the concrete statues that are found throughout the gardens. Later in the fall, they will begin to seek warmer sites to overwinter; that's when they start coming into the house where they can cause staining on walls and curtains from their excrement or if they are squashed in place, their bodies can leave a red stain.  


Control of these invading insects is similar to that for the stink bugs. Since they also sneak into the house through cracks and crevices in the foundation and around windows, doors, and air conditioners, sealing these with caulk and weather stripping will do wonders in keeping them out of the house. If you do find them in the house, sucking them up with a vacuum is the best method of removal.  


Control products for boxelder bugs are similar to those that can be used for excluding stink bugs.   


October at Viette's! 

Saturday, October 5th at 1:30 pm 

Techniques of Plant Propagation   

Tall bearded iris clumps can be rejuvenated by dividing. A wonderful fall hands-on workshop! Plant propagation is an exciting, self-satisfying, and money saving activity! Learn how to landscape your property using your own plants. Mark will teach you the best methods for many different plants including techniques of dividing, taking cuttings, layering, and seeding. Take home loads of plant divisions! A propagating demonstration tour is included.

Please pre-register by calling 800-575-5538;
       $30 fee, two for $50


Saturday, October 12th at 1:30 pm  

Customer Appreciation Day  

September garden at Viette's     and Fall Garden Tour    

enter a  Drawing for a $100 Shopping Spree
Enjoy a guided tour of Andre's beautiful fall gardens and be entered into a drawing to win an on-the-spot $100.00 Perennial Shopping Spree!


Did You Know?
It's easy to overwinter your tropicals!
This container of tropicals can be overwintered in a frost-free garage.

Tropical plants and vines have recently become very popular additions to the summer garden or for growing in large, bold containers placed on decks, patios, or even nestled into the landscape as Andre does in his gardens. Since tropical plants and bulbs can be quite an investment, why not keep them from year to year! They are easy to overwinter right in their containers!


When nighttime temperatures begin to head towards 40�F, it is time to move your tropicals inside for the winter. There are two different ways that you can overwinter most tropicals such as tropical hibiscus, lantana, mandevilla, Bougainvillea, fuchsia, bananas, palms, and Dracena. You can even overwinter tender perennials like geraniums, begonias, Impatiens, Coleus, and Torenia.


First Things First - Clean Them Up

Before you bring your tropicals in for the winter, rinse them off and treat them to make sure that you don't bring any bugs inside with them!  

  • Hose them down with water and spray them with insecticidal soap. Be sure to spray all sides of the foliage and stems.
  • If you currently have insect problems, spray with Bonide Eight before bringing the plants inside. Always read and follow the label directions.
  • For added protection through the overwintering period, insert Bayer Advanced 2 in 1 Insect Control plus Fertilizer plant spikes into your containers according to the label directions! 
Should I Prune Them Back or Not?
Under ideal circumstances, it is best to wait until spring to prune tropicals such as hibiscus, lantana, and mandevilla. That being said, sometimes you may have to do a little bit of pruning to create a plant of manageable size that you can move indoors!

Two ways to Overwinter Tropicals 
Frost-free Garage or Basement
  • These plants will be maintained in a dormant or semi-dormant state.
  • Water sparingly to keep them on the dry side watering only every 3-5 weeks to keep the roots from drying out.
Overwintering in the House
  • Overwintering coleus
    Coleus can be grown indoors in a sunny window.
    These plants are kept actively growing in the warmth of the house. They may continue to bloom throughout the winter. 
  • Keep them in a bright window
  • Water when the upper 2 inches of the soil becomes dry. Do not over-water.
  • Mist the foliage twice a week or so to maintain humidity around the plant. 
  • Feed once a month with a half strength dose of soluble fertilizer at every fourth watering.  
If you enjoy our newsletter, please pass it along to your gardening friends!


On the Viette's Views Gardening Blog
   09-30-2013 14:13:10 PM

Anemone japonicaLast Thursday afternoon I took a walk through Andr�'s gardens. It was a beautiful sunny day with pleasant temperatures in the mid 70's - glorious! The gardens are beginning to transition into to their fall colors of reds, golds, oranges, and browns but there are still plenty of vibrant flowers around. One of my favorite [...]...�

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When You're in the Area
Packsaddle Ridge Golf Club
Visit our friends at Packsaddle Ridge Golf Club and enjoy a breathtaking round of golf after a visit to the beautiful gardens at Viette's.

Packsaddle Ridge Golf Club received a 5 Star Rating "Best Places To Play" by Golf Digest, 2008/2009.
This public 18-hole championship golf course is nestled in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley and features a challenging course with incredible views of the Appalachian Mountains and the valley below.

3067 Packsaddle Trail ~ Keezletown, VA 22832
Phone: 540-269-8188
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