As the summer heat kicks in full force, shady garden spots lure gardeners in mid-day.
What To See
- Kitchen gardens are starting to produce tomatoes, peppers, and corn. Keep watering regularly for maximum production.
- The grasses have reached their mature sizes for the season and are beginning to flower.
- Coneflowers continue to bloom, as do other mid-summer bloomers like yarrow, Russian sage, and black-eyed Susans.
What to Do
- Watch for wilting. The average garden needs 1″ of water a week. But plants will tell you if they need watering by drooping.
- Remember to mow your lawn at at least 3” to encourage healthy grass.
- Hold off on planting anything new during these hot days; instead, make plans to plant in September.
- Start seeds for fall; plant broccoli, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts inside.
- Mulch potatoes, onions, and carrots to keep their “shoulders” covered.
- Harvest summer-bearing raspberries.
- Cut back spent perennials. Daylilies, daisies, catmint, and salvia respond to a cut-back with a fresh flush of growth.
- Keep deadheading to keep your flowers blooming.
- Shear formal hedges of boxwood, yew, and burning bush, which have finished their vegetative growth by late July. Be aware, though, that dry, hot weather may increase the chance of scalding at the cuts.