Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Volunteers needed!

A reminder: The Park Clean-up is set for March 17-18, and the Spring Picnic for April 15.

As of yet, Dawn is still looking for volunteers for both.

"I haven't had any response at all," says Dawn.

Let Dawn know if you can help. Email her ASAP at

Shear pleasures of Florida gardening

After the cold snap of February, the balmy days are driving the gardeners crazy with planters’ fever – just check out any local nursery if you have any doubts. But is it too soon to be planting and pruning? When is it safe?

Early March can be too soon to prune, says Tisha, a Florida Master Gardener who lives in Lake Sarasota. A plant that’s been cut back too early might suffer injury if another cold spell hits.

“It is not a good idea to prune the dead or dying leaves/branches from the cold until you see green growth in the spring,” Tisha said. “Be careful when pruning flowering shrubs such as azaleas,” she added – “wait until they finish flowering.”

Other fall flowering shrubs that are pruned to promote new include hibiscus, thryallis and plumbago.

Mid-March is probably when this area of Florida is safely out of danger from cold. It’s also a good time to plant annuals like Ageratum, Gazania, Geraniums and Nicotiana. The nurseries have these and many more, says Tisha.


Fertilize your landscape plants and fruit trees in February and March. Tisha recommends a general purpose slow-release with nitrogen.

If you’re growing veggies, plan to get bean, beets, cantaloupes, cucumber and lettuce into the ground before it gets too hot.

As for citrus, here’s a good rule of thumb for citrus fertilizer: Use about a pound for each year of the age of the tree. “Make sure that you spread it evenly around the tree, keeping grass, weeds and mulch away from the trunk,” says Tisha.

When planting new trees or shrubs, plant the root ball just about an inch above the ground level so when the rains come, the plant won't sink down, causing it to root rot while sitting below ground level and wet.

Some people can’t get enough from just their own garden. That’s where community gardens come in, offering opportunities to be creative, and to share the earthy passion for growing things with others. Interested? Come to our next meeting, March 13, 7 p.m. and find out more!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Park clean-up, Picnic highlights of General Meeting

Tuesday's general meeting was well attended. Several upcoming events will need volunteers, so check below and let Dawn know if you can help. Here's the wrap-up:

1. Sgt. J. Giasone of the Sheriff's Office talked about traffic and neighborhood issues and said he checks his email every day:

2. Susan selected three new Yard of the Month winners -- the signs will go up tomorrow, she said. She welcomes nominations.

3. The Lake Sarasota Community Group netted $106 from its hot dog sale at the January Community Yard Sale. That brings the total in the treasury to $435.80, said Dawn.

Since the group has no dues, various methods of fundraising are being considered, including a once-a-year letter inviting donations. Contributions of any amount are always welcome and can be mailed to:

Lake Sarasota
PO Box 21983
Sarasota, FL 34276

4. Volunteers will be needed for a clean-up of Lakeview Park. There will be two shifts:
  • Saturday, March 17th, from 8 a.m. to noon
  • Sunday, March 18th, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
If you can contribute some time, please let Dawn know which day you can come by phone (377-4710) or email.

5. Volunteers will also be needed to help with the Community Picnic that's being planned for Sunday, April 15th at the pavilion in Lakeview Park. Again, contact Dawn. Help will be needed with:

  • Entertainment (band, mimes, juggling, face painting, etc.)
  • Games
  • Food
  • Decorations
Whether or not you volunteer, please plan to bring a side dish or dessert when you come on the 15th.

6. George Morgan will hold another 45-minute training session for the neighborhood Citizens Patrol on Tuesday, March 13th at 6 p.m. in the same room at Sarasota Baptist where meetings are held. He's hoping to enlist another dozen or more residents in order to bring the force up to the full complement necessary to patrol the area regularly. Email him if you can make it: . (You can find out more about the Sarasota Sheriff's Citizens Patrol Program here.)

7. Note the Time Change: The next General Meeting will begin at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 13th at Sarasota Baptist Church.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Park will be focus of Meeting Next Tuesday

Planning for a community gathering in Lakeview Park is on the agenda for Lake Sarasota Community Group's next General Meeting -- on Tuesday, Feb. 13th at Sarasota Baptist Church at Proctor and Hand, at 6:30 p.m.