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Kitten Season, Growing Season

In real life on our farm and in cute illustrations, cats are great garden helpers. Veterinarians refer to their usual birth time, which stretches from spring to early fall, as "kitten season." Although cats can become pregnant year-round, late autumn and winter births are a rarity. So, it's difficult to adopt kittens past September.

Now hang with us, because this bit of pondering does lead to a point about gardening. Similar to kitten season, spring to early fall is considered the growing season. Yet many Salvias are winter bloomers ideal for planting now at cooler times of day in parts of the nation with mild winters.

Just because garden centers begin thinning tables of spring-to-fall bloomers in August doesn't mean that all gardens are flowerless from mid-November to mid-March. If you live in an area where winter temperatures are moderate, take a look at some of the winter bloomers we grow at Flowers by the Sea Farm (http://www.fbts.com/winter-blooming-salvias/) for sale through our online nursery.

Also, no matter what your winter climate is like, now is a good time to plant perennials for the next "growing season."

This issue of Salvia Guru links you to a potpourri of topics relevant to growing Salvias, including tips for August garden tasks and the watering of container plantings. We provide buzz about hummingbirds and wild bees. We spin from an unusual bicycle journey tracking Monarch butterfly migration to a study showing the many ways -- including ants -- that nature disperses Salvia seeds. We introduce you to a Texas artist who uses Salvias to dye fabric. And on and on.

Thank you for reading Salvia Guru.

Photo Credit: Kitty Gardeners, Kaz, Pixabay, CC0 by public domain.

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