Summer may almost be over but you can continue to reap the benefits of its beauty well into fall with some simple TLC.
It’s a good rule of thumb to walk your property every week. This gives you the opportunity to see what’s doing well and what’s struggling. Weekly walks let you get in front of an issue before it’s a serious problem. Here are some things you should look for each week.
You’ve spent the time to create a beautiful garden, now get out there and enjoy it! See what’s blooming and take some cuttings of your favorites to create a bouquet for indoors. In addition to cutting traditional flowers like roses, day lilies and coneflower, snip some hosta leaves, boxwood branches and herbs such as lavender, make it interesting.
What Needs Some Help?
If you notice plants that are drooping or turning yellow or brown, water may be the issue. It is still extremely hot outside and your garden beds and lawn need moisture. Water infrequently and deeply no more than once or twice a week. This encourages a deeper root system, which is healthier for plants, including grass. Frequent sprinklings encourage shallow roots that struggle during stressful periods of drought. It’s best to water early in the morning as it encourages foliage to dry before evening, avoiding the possibility of stress.
How’s the Lawn?
Look for weeds, fungus…anything out of the ordinary. Identifying lawn problems early allows you to deal with them quickly and swiftly before they spread.
Another good idea is to test your lawn sprinkler system. Turn it on during the day so you can visually identify if all of the zones are working. So many times an area of the lawn has dried out because someone accidentally broke a sprinkler head with a weed whacker or lawn mower.
What Can you Add?
Now is an excellent time to take stock of where the bare spots are in the garden. Do you need a few additional flowers or shrubs? Take pictures and save them for your next shopping trip to the nursery.
Divide and Conquer!
Perennials such as day lilies and hosta can be divided after blooming and relocated throughout your garden. Or share extra plants with friends.
Fall is just around the corner…
Have you ever wondered how farm stands have such great produce in the fall? They plant a second crop now! The warm summer temperatures help a plant to establish its root system while the cool weather of fall encourages bountiful yields. Many vegetables, including lettuce and broccoli, can be harvested until the ground freezes.
Don’t let the last month of summer pass you by, take care of your garden now and reap the benefits until winter.
Karen Musgrave, CNLP, is the marketing and education specialist at Hicks Nurseries.