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Summer Gardening Challenges

Summer can present some gardening challenges with the heat, humidity, and reduced rainfall we often have in July and August.  Here are a few ideas to protect your garden and plants.

  • When installing new plantings, select plants that are native to the area or that tolerate or even prefer dry soil.

  • Space plants according to the directions on the plant tag or even a little wider.  This allows for air circulation and may stop foliar diseases from spreading to other plants.

  • Use plant varieties that are disease resistant.  Many diseases like powdery and downy mildew flourish in humidity.

  • Group plants that have similar watering needs.  It makes watering easier and more efficient.

  • Spreading a 2″x3″ layer of mulch in your beds will help keep the soil moist and reduce evaporation.

  • Water early in the morning or in early evening to conserve water.  Water at the base of the plants.  Remember it’s the roots that need the water not the foliage.  Make sure foliage is dry before night fall to reduce the chance of disease.

  • Soaker hoses are a great way to get the water directly to the plant roots, conserving moisture and keeping foliage dry.

  • Water deeply and allow the soil to dry out between waterings.  This encourages deep root development which helps the plant get through dry periods.

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