coleus color garden, duke of swirl, juicy lucy, lion fish
Photo: Matthew Benson
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Give New Plants Elbow Room

Just be sure to carefully evaluate your light conditions and available planting space before making any plant purchases. "A large coleus, like 'Big Blonde,' for instance, will overtake other plants fast," Pierson says, "while small ones, like 'Lion Fish' (3), can get swamped and buried just as quickly in a pot." She advises gardeners to give new plants elbow room and prune them freely when they sprout flower stalks or grow leggy. Water when soil feels dry to the touch, but don't overfeed, which makes plants "tastier to insects," Pierson warns. Should pests, such as spider mites, show up, she suggests spraying a natural horticultural oil on the undersides of foliage.

Shown: (1) 'Duke of Swirl'; (2) 'Juicy Lucy'; (3) 'Lion Fish'
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