Newsletter for January 2024

Bareroot trees take over Bay Laurel Nursery in January! Planting time is now – plant your orchard with the bounty of the season and there are lots of great trees to be found. For apples we still have lots of Pink Lady. Its many attributes include the tart-sweet flavor, crispness, attractiveness, size and the fact that it’s one of the last to ripen. Add to that, it’s self fruitful and is adapted to diverse climates.

One of the newest varieties of fruit trees developed are the inter-specific hybrids. A big word to describe hybrids of two different types of fruit. The pluots, apriums and plumcots have been around for quite a while. New arrivals are the pluerries – a cross between plum and cherry. All these varieties are quite unique and very tasty.

Don’t wait too long to make your bare root choices from our bare root website. You can visit the website to get the latest availability info. Of course you can also come into Bay Laurel Garden Center in Atascadero. If you are unable to plant at this time, you may reserve your plants to pick up at a later date.

No better month than January to sharpen the pruning shears and have at it. Most fruit trees benefit greatly from judicious pruning. The specific needs vary from fruit to fruit. The most important time to prune is when the trees are young so as to give them a good structure to build on. We have a great small book available at the nursery. You can also visit the Dave Wilson site – This is an extensive primer on fruit tree pruning.

Beautiful bareroot roses to tempt you at Bay Laurel Garden Center in Atascadero! A great array – hybrid teas, floribundas, climbers, shrubs, miniatures. And not listed on the web site, tree roses in three sizes. A special type, “Romantica” from Star Roses are similar to the old-fashioned full and fragrant ones. These, however, bloom much more frequently. Hybrid teas are much touted for cut flowers. Floribundas come in clusters and tend to bloom non-stop. Go to our Fruit Trees Online website at for pictures and availability.

Roses tend to grow quickly in our area. Once the branches have added 2 to 3 inches, apply fertilizer. Ones that have at least 10% phosphorous are best for promoting bloom. If fungus problems including black spot, mildew or rust are prevalent, spray with products such as Neem oil. This is also a great time to prune roses. We have some gloves to protect your arms from those prickly thorns!

Most peaches and nectarines are susceptible to a fungus commonly called Peach Leaf Curl. This fungus distorts the leaves and fruit and can kill very young trees. We carry the spray Liqui-Cop, the suggested remedy. It’s best to spray 2 to 3 times during the dormant season – the most important right before the buds open. You can purchase it in 3 sizes including one that attaches to your hose, great for treating larger orchards.

This week we are expecting an influx of bedding plants to bring color back into the landscape at Bay Laurel Garden Center in Atascadero. These cold hardy plants include pansies, violas, snapdragons, stock and primulas. We will also have Iceland poppies and California poppies in 6 packs. Additionally, we are expecting seed packs of California native wild flowers.

Vegetables? Yes-they’re arriving at Bay Laurel Garden Center. You can still get a planting of cool season vegetables in the ground. Expect several varieties of lettuce including green oak leaf. You might want to try the new Swiss chard named ‘Celebration’. We added to our strawberry collection jumbo packs of the everbearing types ‘Quinalt’ and ‘Eversweet’. And we have bareroot rhubarb and 4″ plants of artichokes.