Monday, August 31, 2009

The Plant Sale Is Over But You Can Still Save!

We are happy to say that many of you came out and took advantage of Wilmington Island's End of Summer Clearance Sale. It ran for a week and we watched you run away with great deals. Still need advice on how to get your new plants off to a successful start? Don't hesitate to ask. We can offer you excellent products that reduce transplant shock, stimulate root growth, and even help with your water and fertilizing efforts.

For those of you who are still craving a bargain, we are continuing the following sales for another week: Furniture 25% OFF
Wind Chimes 30% OFF
Citronella Candles 50% OFF
Gardman Obelisks and Arbors 30% OFF
All Terrain Body Products 30% OFF
Hummingbird Feeders 30% OFF
Birdfeeders and Seed 30% OFF
Gardman Screens 30% OFF
Composters 20% OFF
Austram Coco Hanging Baskets 30% OFF

Sale ends Saturday, September 5th!
Our store will be closed Sunday and Monday for Labor Day.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Price Correction

There was a mistake in our recent e-newsletter regarding the price of Natural Guard Soil Activator. The correct prices are: 20lb bag/2000 sq/ft $16.99
40 lb bag/4000 sq/ft $24.99

Sorry for any inconvenience.

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Big Big Sale on Wilmington Island!!!

Hester & Zipperer
on Wilmington Island’s
End of Summer Clearance Sale
Saturday, August 22nd thru Sunday, August 30th

The Big Plant Sale!!!
(Includes All Plants)
Spend $1 - $100 and get 25% off
Spend $101-$200 and get 35% off
Spend $201-$300 and get 50% off
Spend $301-$499 and get 60% off
Spend $500 or more and get 70% off

Amounts are before discount.
Discounts will be taken at register.

Other Sales
All Pottery 20% off
Furniture 25% off
Wind Chimes 30% off
Citronella Candles 50% off
Gardman Obelisks 30% off
All Terrain Body Products 30% off
Hummingbird Feeders 30% off
Austram Coco Hanging Baskets 30% off
Birdfeeders and Seed 30% off
Gardman Arbors 30% off
Gardman Screens 30% off
Composters 20% off

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Educated Customers Are Making Smart Purchases

The green movement is about nothing if not education. Its momentum comes from showing you the difference between product A and product Green. Even customers who do not choose the greener option, initially, will likely make smarter purchases in the future thanks to greenies .

The first benefit comes from the environmentally friendly practice of reading labels and more specifically active ingredients. Those who actively read labels are helped in the following ways:

The same chemical may come in a liquid concentrate or a ready-to-use sprayer. By recognizing the same active ingredient marketed to you in a couple different forms, you can save money by choosing the least expensive form of application.

Customers who seek only a certain "Insecticidal Dust" based on brand marketing may find themselves frustrated and unnecessarily driving to more than one store to find it. If you know you only want "Scotts" this or "Ortho" that, you will likely overlook products that are less expensive, more effective, or otherwise better suited to your situation.

There is also the obvious benefit of learning the correct usage of a potentially hazardous chemical.

Greenies can also teach you useful terminology.

"Systemic" and "Contact" are two extremely helpful classifications, and they can help you in the following ways:

You've got roses that need repeated treatment with fungicide. The uneducated person might grab a bottle that says "fungicide" and think their problem is solved. If they grabbed a contact fungicide (even one with pretty roses on the label) though, they will not have the lasting effect of a systemic fungicide. Who wants to spray more when they don't have to do so?

You are spraying your vegetables or fruit trees for bugs, and you want something that will work like a champ. You like that systemic products last longer, but recognize that you don't want a chemical making its way through something you will eat.

You've got weeds and you need them dead. Most people will choose products that kill fast! Careful though. Just because the top of that weed is killed overnight with a contact herbicide doesn't mean the roots aren't clamoring to send up more growth in a few days.

Other buzz words and phrases that can help you out in the long run:
Pre-emergent-Great for keeping things from sprouting. Won't do diddly if it already has!

Post-emergent-Great for killing what has already sprouted. Won't do diddly to sprouting seeds.

Amend-To add to something. Amending soil improves plant growth.

Organic Matter-Soil that is not amended often has too little organic matter. Organic matter helps by retaining moisture and nutrients.

Soil Permeability-The ability of water to travel through soil.

Selective Herbicide - Kills only certain plants.

Non-selective-Kills everything.

Ph, Acid, Alkaline - Sometimes plants prefer a certain Ph. Nutrients are not absorbed correctly if the soil is too far in one direction or another.

Native - Naturally grows in this area.

Nonnative - Does not grow naturally in this area, and thereby may not be suited to our climate. Alternatively, it could be invasive like Kudzu.

The bottom line is a little information might help you more than you think.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


Are your leaves being eaten? Read this and discover why that might not be a problem.

There are a few reasons that these slow-moving little guys cause people angst. First of all, they're weird looking. They are oddly colored, some have spines, and, by golly, they're eating our plants. People have used the chemical equivalent of flame-throwers for much less. Your panic, and choice of an unnecessary treatment, can easily cause your plant more harm than the caterpillars.

Look at these common caterpillar situations:
Barb goes out on her deck one afternoon. Her oleanders are blooming like heat-tolerant troopers. Wait, though! What's that?
Chances are you've seen these babies, and you were just dying to spray or dust something on them. (One customer even told us she sprayed Raid on them. No! No! No!. Raid is not designed for plant use. It will fry your plants.)

Solution: Keep drinking whatever cold beverage you were enjoying, and do nothing. These caterpillars are doing no more damage to your oleanders than if you cut them yourself. As we know, oleanders respond very well to pruning and respond with lush new growth.

Nancy heads out to her herb garden to cut some parsley for her chicken surprise. The surprise is that there's no parsley! The striped charmer to the left, and his cronies, have nibbled it down to the stems. Maybe you've got a second parsley and they're nibbling that one too.

Swallowtail caterpillars love herb gardens because herbs are their primary food source. Dill, Cilantro, Fennel, Parsley, and even Rue can woo these guys.

Solution: Follow Paul McCartney's advice and "let it be". In a few weeks they will go off and become beautiful butterflies. We've also found that birds, lizards, and even wasps will gladly take them off your hands. Wasps are VERY good for the garden. If you don't swat at them as they hunt for dinner, they aren't a threat. (If you're allergic-obviously don't place this plant right where you relax.) Herbs respond like they've been pruned. They will grow back, so continue to water regularly. You can even use fish emulsion or blood meal on them to give them an extra boost.

If you thought it was raining cats and dogs, or even men for that matter, you would be mistaken. It's tent caterpillars.Now you really want to do something, right? They love my pecan tree. Some people have suggested applying a systemic insecticide drench to trees with tent caterpillars. I understand, but let me tell you why that's not smart.
  1. Tent caterpillars are only caterpillars for a very short period of time. By the time the systemic insecticide goes all the way up the tree, the caterpillars will be long gone!
  2. Do you really want to put systemic insecticide into a plant that you might eat? No. Even if the chemical is out of the tree by the time the pecans form-how will you be sure?
  3. The tree does not suffer at all. It grows back like they were never there.
You got something on your citrus too?! Does it look more like bird poo than a caterpillar?

This is the caterpillar of the Giant Swallowtail butterfly. It likes citrus trees, and its ugly face shouldn't cause you panic. We all remember the story of the Ugly Ducking who became a swan, right?
So, to my left is the poor duck and to my right is the swan!

Solution:Use this caterpillar to teach your kids not to judge a book by its cover. Your plants will be fine. If you have a large number of these on a tiny citrus, just pluck them off. Okay, tell someone who doesn't get the willies to pluck them off. Doesn't your neighbor have a HUGE citrus tree that could use a trim?

By now you're just fed up. You want to do SOMETHING! If, by chance your tomato or pepper plants are disappearing before your eyes, chances are a Tomato Hornworm has found them. What? Something endanger your tomato plant? I know, it's crazy, but it happens.

Solution: Bacillus Thuringiensis, also known as BT, is the active ingredient in a product called Dipel Dust. This is the best insecticide for caterpillars. It is inexpensive, and it's only really necessary in the case of the Tomato Hornworm or, possibly, the Cabbage Looper. If you have another situation where some caterpillars need killin', it works on all kinds of caterpillars. We recommend identifying them before resorting to this. Often, as mentioned above, the caterpillar will do no harm.