Knowing When to Plant Penstemon and How to Grow it - Krostrade

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Knowing When to Plant Penstemon and How to Grow it

Wondering when to plant penstemon? Penstemon, also called penstemon beardtongue, is a plant that produces beautiful tubular flowers. This flowering plant can survive in most areas of the western U.S. The sweet nectar of penstemon will have the bees, birds, and butterflies flocking to your garden.

The best time to plant the penstemon beardtongue is during spring, so their roots will grow before the winter season comes. This plant is hardy, and its stems are strong, so you don’t need to support the branches unless your plants are planted in exposed locations.

Knowing When to Plant Penstemon and How to Grow it

How to Grow and Take Care of Penstemon

The penstemon plants come in different colors like salmon, pink, lavender, red, and white. Their tubular shape is perfect for hummingbirds who like to spend their nesting period near penstemons. Every flower has five petals, and they come in different colors, such as pink, red, lavender, salmon, and white. Penstemon is a perennial, but they may also grow as an annual in cold or warm areas.

Here’s what you need to know about growing and taking care of penstemon beardtongue plants:


Light preference

Penstemon prefers part shade to full sun. However, this mainly depends on the type of penstemon. For example, plants with reddish or purple leaves grow best under direct sunlight. Make sure to do a little research on the kind of penstemon you want to grow.



The best soil for penstemons is well-drained and slightly alkaline. However, these plants can even grow in soil that’s mostly sand and gravel. They don’t grow well when planted poorly drained soil and are sensitive to winter moisture. It helps to plant them in raised beds to help them survive moist conditions. Don’t add any soil amendments that retain water like manure or peat moss.


Water needs

Even though penstemons are not as drought tolerant as cacti, many variants grow well in sweltering weather conditions. The amount of water you give your plants depends on the type of penstemon you choose and your soil’s capacity to hold water.

For variants native to your area, you don’t need to water them as much once they’re established. But for hybrids propagated for gardens, they may not be as drought-tolerant as the native varieties, so you may need to water them more often during dry spells.


Grow from seeds

You can quickly grow penstemons from seed. The best time to plant them is to sow them outdoors during the fall season to the beginning of winter because these seeds require some time to stratify and break dormancy. In this way, your penstemon seeds will germinate naturally. Sow the seeds about half an inch deep and keep it moist. It usually takes a year or two before you can see your plants bloom.


Deadheading and pruning

Deadheading lengthens the blooming stage, but you should leave a handful of seed heads if you want your plants to reseed. You’ll also need to prune your penstemons by cutting the stems after flowering. By pruning your penstemons, this encourages the growth of new leaves and flowers.


Pests and blight

Penstemons are resilient plants, and you don’t need to worry about pests and serious diseases. However, you need to watch out for root rot, powdery mildew, southern blight, and leaf spot, as for pests, spider mites, quail, slugs, snails, and other critters. Generally, you don’t have to worry about pests and blight as long as you’re growing your penstemons in the appropriate environment.


Why Use a Hobby Greenhouse?

Even though penstemons are hardy plants, they need to grow in their ideal growing environment to produce many flowers. Other than that, here are other reasons why you should invest in a mini greenhouse:


Protect plants from pests and diseases

Penstemons are less susceptible to pests and diseases if they’re grown in appropriate growing conditions. However, when pests and diseases do infiltrate your plants, the damage can be catastrophic. If you want to protect your plants from pests and diseases, grow them inside a hobby greenhouse.


Gardeners with limited space

Fresh flowers are a great addition to any home, but not everyone has a spacious garden or backyard. If you have limited garden space, a hobby greenhouse is a great alternative. With a standard size of six feet, you can place them anywhere – on balconies, patios, and decks. You can plant almost anything inside a greenhouse – from flowering plants to fruits and vegetables.


Start early plant growth

With a mini greenhouse, you can start growing your plants before the cold season arrives in your area. Once the weather becomes more favorable, you can transfer your healthy crops into your garden.


Keeps plants safe from harsh weather

A hobby or mini greenhouse can keep your plants safe from frost, snow, high winds, excessive heat, and unpredictable weather. You can place them inside the enclosure until spring rolls in. When the weather is warmer and friendlier, you can transfer your plants into your garden or snip a few and place them inside your home.


The Bottom Line on When to Plant Penstemon

Now that you know when to plant penstemon and how to take care of them, you’ll be able to enjoy beautiful blooms in your garden or inside your home.


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How to Start an Avocado Farm: 4 Things to Remember

How to Start an Avocado Farm: 4 Things to Remember

Are you interested to learn how to start an avocado farm? Embarking on this journey requires time, effort, and commitment. Plus, you need to consider a number of factors including soil preparation, as well as weather conditions.

You’re probably aware that avocado trees or Persea spp, are originally from Mexico. This explains why one of the famous Mexican cuisines include avocado-based guacamole.

You can choose to grow avocado trees indoors or outdoors. If you plan to grow them in a hobby greenhouse or at home, all you have to do is to sow the seeds in pots. When they’re grown outdoors, avocado trees can grow up to 40 feet. You can al

Moreover, these trees thrive well in regions where the weather is mostly warm and sunny. However, don’t expect them to grow in areas that experience extreme temperatures during the summer and winter.


Avocado: The Superfood

Did you know that the global demand for avocados has been steadily increasing? Aside from the fact that its fruit is known for its full, buttery flavor and rich texture, it’s also packed with loads of essential nutrients that are good for your body.

A single serving of avocado fruit contains vitamin K, vitamin C, folate, potassium, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, vitamin B3, vitamin B5, vitamin B6, vitamin E, manganese, magnesium, iron, copper, zinc, and vitamin A.  It also has protein, fiber, and healthy fats. If you’re on a low-carb plant food diet, you’d want to incorporate avocados into your diet.


What are the Growing Requirements of an Avocado Tree?

Since avocado trees need to be grown in warm semi-humid climates, they only grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) plant hardiness zones 8 to 11. However, it’s important to note that while avocado trees may be grown in those zones, they don’t always thrive well in areas that get extremely hot during the summer or frosty, chilly, or snowy in the winter. This implies that the ideal environment for an avocado tree should have moderate temperatures all-year-round.


What are the 3 Primary Groups of Avocado Trees?

If you’re planning to start an avocado farm, you need to know the 3 main groups of avocado trees: Guatemalan, West Indian, and Mexican. Each type has its own ideal growing range.


Guatemalan Avocados

A Guatemalan avocado is known for its hard skin that features plenty of warts.


West Indian Avocados

This type of avocado tends to flourish in warm climates. Unlike the Guatemalan avocado, a West Indian avocado has thin and shiny skin and could weigh up to 5 pounds.


Mexican Avocados

A Mexican avocado thrives well in tropical highland areas. Compared to the other avocado groups, the Mexican avocado is more tolerant of cold weather. In fact, it can manage to survive even when temperatures drop to 26˚F.

Moreover, this type of avocado produces smaller fruit that weighs less than a single pound and its skin has a distinct papery-smoothness to it.


Expert Tips on How to Start an Avocado Farm

Unless you’re willing to take on a long-term project, spend a considerable amount of money on planting, and wait for a period of 3 to 5 years for your first harvest, don’t get into avocado farming. However, if you’re willing to go through the whole nine yards to enjoy top yields for many years, check out this guide:


Tip #1: Plant them in areas where the temperatures are consistently cool

Be sure to plant your avocado trees in cool temperatures that can range between 68˚F to 75˚F on a daily basis to avoid fruit drop. However, when they’re flowering, or when they’re starting to bear fruit, the humidity levels shouldn’t go below 50% at midday.


Tip #2: They don’t like wind

In case you’re not aware, avocado trees have brittle branches that easily snap off. For this reason, it’s best not to plant them in areas that are mostly windy because wind can cause considerable damage to their fruit.


Tip #3: Most of them need proper irrigation

If your avocados are rain-fed, they need to have at least 1,000 mm rainfall spread out throughout each year. Before their flowering season, avocado trees require a drier season that lasts for about 2 months. On a weekly basis, avocado trees need about 25 mm water.

It’s extremely important to test the quality of irrigation water because if its pH and bicarbonates are really high, they trigger a build-up of free lime in the soil. You also need to remember that high levels of sodium and chloride can have a negative impact on your avocado plants.

Since the plant’s roots are shallow, the ideal way to apply water is via a micro-sprinkler or drip. This ensures an even distribution throughout the avocado tree’s root area.

Moreover, proper moisture control needs to be ensured in the root zone because this area tends to easily dry up.


Tip #4: Determine the soil’s suitability and prepare it accordingly

You can’t just plant an avocado seed on soil that hasn’t been prepared accordingly. To prepare the soil for planting, you need to dig soil profile pits throughout your farm. Make sure that the pits are 1.5 m deep.

Only a single put per ha is required. However, you need to dig more pits if the location is non-homogenous or hilly. Check the color of the soil, its texture, structure, patches, sitting water, concretions, hardpans, stones, and gravel.



Grow Your Avocado Trees in a Hobby Greenhouse!

Since avocado trees require specific levels of temperature and humidity, you’ll find it easier to grow them in a hobby greenhouse. The enclosed space allows you to customize the environment to meet the needs of your plants. What’s more, it protects them from strong winds and the constant threat of pests.

Learning how to start an avocado farm outdoors is great, but growing them inside a hobby greenhouse is even better.



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