SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Lifestyle

June 21, 2013

When to keep growing, when to cut back

(Continued)

A: Hostas are a bit unusual; leaves developed in the spring are the leaves you will live with all season. Move them gently, breaking and tearing as few leaves as possible. With very little extra water and care this year, they will emerge again next season with perfect leaves!

If you need to hold hosta plants after digging and before replanting, cover the roots with wet newspapers or towels and keep them in the shade. Spray-mist the plants every day or two, more often if the weather is hot, and replant them as soon as you can.

This week’s dirt: Do you love your peonies but not the ants that populate the flowers? Try this: Cut the peonies as usual and immerse them in a deep pail of water. Set the pail in a cool, protected location, like a back porch. Make your arrangements the next day. You and your peonies should be ant free!

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North Shore Gardener by Barbara Barger of Beverly is a feature of Friday’s Lifestyles section. Reach Barbara by email at nsgardener@comcast.net or write to her c/o The Salem News, 32 Dunham Road, Beverly, MA 01915. Previous North Shore Gardener columns can be found at www.nsgardener.com.

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