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Monthly Tips

"Everything we’ve had done by Classic has exceeded our expectations."

- M.C.
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Make your thumb even greener. Follow some Classic Tips.

Is it hard to know when to divide the daylilies? Prune the paeony or trim the taxus? Sign up for our email Garden Tips and you'll get a monthly reminder about what's happening in your garden and what you need to do about it. (Don't want to do anything about it? Ouch. Better see our Landscape Care section!)

To receive the "Monthly Gardening Tip" just fill out the form above. Note: We are unable to send the "Monthly Gardening Tip" via an email attachment to some ISP's. If you asked for, but aren't getting it, either find a surly and jaded teenager to reconfigure your computer or simply send a self-addressed stamped envelope to receive "snail mail."

Tips for May

Celebrate Spring with 20% off our plants of the month – Rhododendrons.
Print out our coupon and stop by the nursery today to pick out your favorite Rhododendron and Azalea and companion plants from our great selection of trees and shrubs, ferns and vines, and perennials that are well-suited to Pacific Northwest gardens! Is your yard ready for the back yard barbecue season? If not, stop by and talk to our expert nursery staff. We can help reinvigorate your yard for the summer entertaining.

Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 8th. Kids enjoy finding affordable gifts for plant-loving moms at Classic Nursery – everything from a new pair of gloves to bright-colored plant supports. Print the coupon on our website to score 20% off G & B Organic Blue Ribbon Potting Soil. Some customers come in to spend some quality time with gardening mothers - just browsing new perennials and exclaiming over unique yard art. Some stop by to grab quick last minute gifts like beautiful hanging baskets or purchase a Gift Certificate (also available by phone).

Memorial Day is Monday, May 30th. Honor a loved one by planting a memorial shrub or tree. We offer delivery and/or install for larger trees -- be sure to schedule in advance however as spring is our busiest time of year.

What to Plant Now

Vegetable Garden: Soil temperatures are warming up! Tomatoes, beans, squash, peppers and basil can go directly into the garden in the middle of the month. Keep an eye on the forecast for any dips near freezing and be prepared to cover sensitive crops. If you do not have much space in your yard, consider planting a container garden on the deck or outside your kitchen door; tomatoes, basil and peppers make an excellent combination. Salad bowls are also an easy alternative; plant an assortment of greens and herbs in a pot on your deck which you can harvest on a weekly basis. Add a colorful green, such as Bright Lights Chard or Red Leaf Lettuce, and you have a salad bowl that is beautiful as well as functional. Remember to water containers during dry spells.

What’s Blooming?

There is no better time to choose a flowering tree or shrub then the month of May. Small to tall, we have varieties for big yards and tiny patios. Rhododendrons and Lilacs blooms are at full tilt. If space is an issue, consider planting a wonderful smaller variety such as: Syringa Bloomerang "Pink Perfume". This shrub has fragrant small flowers on a compact bush and makes a wonderful plant for an entryway or along a pathway. Dogwoods are in full bloom now as well. Plants such as Choisya (Mexican Orange) and deciduous Azaleas add lovely fragrance in addition to delightful blooms.

Prepare your yard for summer: Despite our chilly damp springs, Pacific Northwest summers have been warmer and drier as of late. Save money on watering by applying a one inch layer of mulch now. Mulch will hold moisture in the soil and as you water, the mulch will slowly break down and feed the plants. Adding mulch now will also help cut down on weeding through the summer. We sell mulch in bulk by the yard and in bagged quantities. We now also carry bulk Fertil-Mulch, a blended composted manure and sawdust mulch with a pleasant dark brown color. Many garden projects need more than a bag but less than a 10 cubic yard mountain that takes all summer to move. Come to Classic for economically-priced loads of one half yard to 5 yards. Not sure how much to get? One yard covers a 10ft by 30ft area one inch deep, or creates a twelve-inch deep 9ft by 3ft raised bed. A large pick-up truck can usually take one cubic yard of mulch or bark. Stop by the nursery to pick up a load or call 425-885-5678 extension 2 to set up a delivery.

Garden Maintenance

Vegetable Garden: If you planted lettuce, herbs and peas last month, they should be in full swing and ready to harvest by end of May. The more you harvest these crops, the more they produce. Make sure you plant your tomatoes this month. Thin out strawberry beds, clean up under blueberries and remove fallen leaves.
Prune and Feed Flowering Shrubs: Prune spring-flowering shrubs, such as Lilacs, Viburnum, Weigela, Spiraea and Rhododendrons as soon as they finish blooming. Since many of these plants blooms are set on this year’s growth, you want to prune them right after they finish blooming to shape them to the size you prefer and to promote healthy growth and flowering for next year. Give these plants a good feeding of fertilizer and water well. After blooming, lightly shear up to 1/3rd of Spiraeas to encourage them to rebloom. Remove sucker growths from the base of Lilacs and dead head Rhododendrons. Feed Lilacs in May with a good all-purpose fertilizer after they have finished blooming. If your soil has an acidic pH, work a little lime into the soil as well. Work lime in the soil around Hydrangeas to produce pink flowers or aluminum sulphate for blue.

Lawns: May is a good month to repair your lawn. Fill in bare spots by raking & slightly loosening surface of the soil and sow a good quality lawn seed evenly over the area. Tamp seed in gently and water. Keep the patch moist by covering with light amount of compost or peat moss. This is the time to eliminate lawn weeds by hand pulling, before they go to seed! Setting your mower for a higher cut during the spring months will help the grass to grow in fuller and help choke out the weeds.

Conifers: Pines and other conifers can be kept to a compact size by pinching off the new growth 'candles'.
Water Features: Clean and repair your fountains, bubblers and water features.