Frequently Asked Questions
- When do you get tomatoes?
We generally start getting tomatoes in mid-April. Tomatoes don’t respond well to temperatures below 45 degrees. We start bringing them in before it’s time to plant outside in order to secure as many varieties as possible.
If you buy them early you should be prepared to protect them until mid-May, or until night time temperatures are consistently above 45 degrees.
- Do you carry live ladybugs?
We no longer carry live lady bugs due to environmental concerns around taking them from the wild and releasing them into new habitats. They are most often harvested from other regions and may carry pathogens that could harm our native populations.
We do carry a lot of plants that can attract beneficial insects to your garden!
A better solution for releasing predator insects is green lacewings, which we offer. They’re native to our region and prey on aphids, scale, mealybugs, leafhoppers, thrips, and mites. Here’s a great article – https://treefruit.wsu.edu/crop-protection/opm/lacewings/#:~:text=(Neuroptera%3A%20Hemerobiidae),on%20a%20variety%20of%20insects.
- When do vegetable starts arrive?
We start getting herbs and early season vegetable starts, such as lettuce, greens, broccoli, and cauliflower sometime in February. It depends on weather and when our growers have plants available.
Tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and other warm season vegetables will start showing up April and May. We have a full selection of seeds and all the supplies you need to plant your own right now!
- Is now a good time to plant native plants?
Natives can be planted any time of year with success! While it’s true that planting around the start of the rainy season can help get new plants established, they will still need to be watered through their first summer, at least. The important things to remember are to avoid planting during times of hard or extended frosts, or on very hot days. Otherwise, it just takes water and some good mulch to get native plants off to a good start.
- Is it okay to plant blueberries (or other shrubs) in winter?
Winter hardy shrubs, including blueberries can be planted any time of the year. It’s best to avoid planting during a period of deep or extended frosts but otherwise the cool rainy weather is great for establishing plants. It’s important to remember that new plantings might need water even during the rainy season. Wind can dry out the ground quickly during periods of dry weather.
- Is your inventory on your website?
Our inventory of plants is changing from minute to minute so we’re not able to maintain an accurate list on our website. We’re always happy to chat by phone or email to let you know if we have what you’re looking for.
- How do I get rid of fungus gnats?
Fungus gnats are tiny flies that love warm, moist environments with plenty of organic matter. Adults will fly around your houseplants and seedlings and do not feed, but larvae live in the soil and eat organic matter, such as potting mix and plant roots. Their presence indicates you are overwatering, so the most important thing to do is stop watering so often. If that doesn’t solve the problem, you can also kill the adults using sticky traps, and you can kill the larvae by making a soil drench using Mosquito Bits or Mosquito Dunks.
- Should I put gravel in the bottom of the container when potting up a plant?
No! Putting gravel in the bottom of a pot does not help with drainage and only takes up space that is better used for your plant’s roots. For best results, just use potting mix and always use a container that has a drainage hole.
- I’m looking for a particular plant. Do you do special orders?
Garden Fever has a partnership with Shop Monrovia, so you may want to see if the plant is available on their website at https://www.monrovia.com/shop.html. You can purchase plants on the Monrovia website and have them sent to Garden Fever for pickup. Keep in mind that customer orders are only shipped to us when we are able to place a full order with the nursery, so you may not be able to receive your plants right away.
Otherwise, the best way to see if we can locate a particular plant is to email us. Just click “Contact Us” on our website and fill out the form. We’ll check with our suppliers and do our best to get what you need!
- Does Garden Fever do landscaping?
No. We do not do landscaping, but we do allow landscapers to post their business cards on our bulletin board at our store, so you may be able to find some help with your project that way.
We also recommend checking out the Professionals Directory on the Backyard Habitat Certification Program website for garden help https://backyardhabitats.org/resources/professionals-directory/.
- Can you help me get my garden tools sharpened?
Yes! We have a professional tool sharpener who visits our store every few weeks and works on tools that have been dropped off by our customers. Just give us a call for schedule and pricing.
We also sell sharpening tools if you are inclined to do it yourself.
- How do I turn my hydrangeas blue or pink?
Many selections of Hydrangea macrophylla will have blue flowers in acidic soils and pink flowers in more alkaline soils. Most of the soils in our region are very acidic, and our hydrangeas are mostly blue. To turn them pink, you can try adding a handful of dolomitic lime around the base of the plant several times during the growing season. To turn a pink-flowering hydrangea blue, apply sulfur to the base of the plant in midspring. It may take multiple seasons for the treatment to have an effect.
- How do I care for mason bees?
Putting out nesting tubes or a nesting box for mason bees is just the first step in encouraging these wonderful native pollinators. You’ll also want to have lots of early spring flowers blooming in your garden and a mud source for them to visit. It’s best to take the house down on June 1 to protect the developing bees from predators. Around November, you’ll want to clean and dry the cocoons and store them in your fridge for the winter. This excellent guide from OSU will take you through the steps: https://extension.oregonstate.edu/catalog/pub/em-9130-nurturing-mason-bees-your-backyard-western-oregon.
- Do you have houseplants that are non-toxic to pets?
Yes! We recommend consulting the ASPCA website for a list of plants that are non-toxic to cats and dogs https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/toxic-and-non-toxic-plants. We carry many of the species on this list, and we can help you find plants that are safe for the whole family!
- What is your return policy?
Plants can be returned within three days of purchase and must be well cared for in the interim. Other items can be returned within ten days of purchase. Customers returning items without a receipt will receive store credit in the form of a gift card. If you have your receipt, you will receive a refund (in most cases, that means your credit card will be refunded).
- When do you get garlic bulbs in?
Our garlic bulbs typically arrive in early September. In our area, it’s best to plant garlic in late October or November, but we encourage you to shop early, because we do sell out each year.
- Do you have edgeworthia?
Probably not. We have been trying to locate this popular early-blooming shrub for quite some time, but none of our suppliers are growing it. You are always welcome to call or email us with inventory questions, however. Or, better yet, come on in!