The dog days of summer have arrived, and with them have come the warm-weather flowers and vegetables that we’ve all been awaiting. Tomatoes are starting to turn a warm orange-red, peas are ready for picking, and even the weeds seem to have gained new life. It’s important to keep up with the garden and gardening tasks before they can get ahead of you and make gardening a chore. Following are some tips for what needs to be done in the garden during the summertime.
Regularly cut or pick off the dead blooms (deadhead) of annuals to stimulate continued growth. Annuals that have died should be pulled and tossed in the compost pile (if the plant otherwise seemed healthy) or the trash (if it was diseased or infested).
Pull weeds on a regular basis to keep the flower beds neat looking, and continue to add mulch as needed to keep moisture in.
Deadhead any spent blooms to keep your perennial plants flowering. Stake up any taller perennials so that they don’t snap off in the wind.
Containers and Hanging Baskets
Be sure to water container gardens on a regular basis, especially in extreme heat or extreme dry conditions, as they can’t hold as much moisture and dry out much faster than plants growing in the ground. Fertilize once a month or so with all-purpose fertilizer or compost tea.
The warm weather that summertime brings makes most herb plants thrive – enjoy them and take advantage of their bounty by tossing fresh herbs into salads or stir frys, as garnishes or just as a tasty treat. Trim or pinch herb plants regularly to stimulate new growth.
While summertime can bring many more tasks to do in the garden, be sure to also spend some time enjoying your hard work.
Photo by: T Shaw