Your Garden

Things you could or should be doing in your garden ...

July 2014

All Month
  • Mow regularly so that you cut no more than one-third of the grass blade at one time;  Bermuda grass may need to be cut every 5 days if it has been fertilized at the high rate
  • The Dog Days of Summer are here – this is a wonderful Southern expression that refers to the fact that Sirius (the Dog Star) rises with the Sun each day during July and not about our dogs lying lazily in the shade since it is so hot outside
  • Deadhead – Deadhead – Deadhead to keep those flowers coming
Week One
  • Finish all azalea pruning and fertilizing by the Fourth of July
  • Tomatoes should be at their best – water regularly and pick often
  • When watering lawns, early morning is best (4 to 8 am); better to water deeply and irregularly than every other day for just ten minutes
Week Two
  • Sow annual seeds of zinnias, cosmos, and cleome for late summer blooms
  • If growing hybrid tea roses, be vigilant with fungicide sprays to control black spot or plant one of the disease resistant landscape roses and forget about spraying
  • Control broadleaf weeds in lawns with appropriate post-emergent herbicide
Week Three
  • Raise your mower height as the temperatures increase as this puts less stress on your grass
  • Prune older canes of blackberries and raspberries so new shoots can grow stronger for next year’s crop
  • If some annuals such as impatiens have grown tall and spindly, cut them back by half, fertilize and watch them jump
Week Four
  • As crapemyrtle flowers fade and the seed pods form, pinch them off to encourage new blooms
  • Water lawns deeply and irregularly to encourage deep rooting; do not water until lawn begins to show stress (you can see your footprints when you walk across the lawn)
  • Make notes in your garden journal about which annuals and perennials are performing best during the heat of the summer
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