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Proctor's Garden: Despite the wind, it's time to plant and fertilize

Don't let the wind delay the planting of cool season flowers and vegetables.

DENVER — Don't let the wind delay the planting of cool season flowers and vegetables. In addition, you can move some plants — such as succulents — outdoors.

I've got many succulents and it takes weeks to carry them outside. They need the protection of a shade cloth. After the winter indoors, direct sun can scald the leaves and leave them disfigured for years. They can't grow new leaves the way a geranium or petunia can if it gets sunburned.

Succulents can take cool nights. Many desert plants tolerate frost because in their native environs, it often drops below freezing at some times of the year. I've had some agaves and other succulents outside for three weeks and they're fine, although I did throw sheets on them during the last cold snap.

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Continue to plant cool-season annuals and vegetables. Keep them watered during windy spells and fertilize them weekly or every ten days. I'm using a "grow" formula with a higher ratio of nitrogen. As they grow, I'll switch to a "bloom" formula to promote more flowers.

Perennials can be safely divided and transplanted now. They'll adjust quickly and suffer less shock than if you wait until it's hot.

Potted plants can also be moved up to bigger pots if needed. My agaves needed new pots so I chose plastic. It's not as nice as terra cotta but it's lightweight and makes them more easily portable.

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