June-July Gardening Tips
1. Most landscape plants, lawns and gardens need about an inch of moisture every week, either through rain or irrigation. If you aren’t sure how long it takes your sprinkler to provide that amount, measure the flow by placing pie pans in your yard to capture the water.
2. Apply organic mulch to your landscape beds to help cool the soil and conserve water. Fine mulches—like ground fir bark—are great for annual beds, vegetable gardens, and perennial borders. Use coarser mulches, like cypress mulch, for landscape beds and around the base of trees. Always leave space between the mulch and the stems and trunks of plants.
3. Remove spent flower heads on perennials, annuals, and shrubs so the plants can concentrate their energy on growth rather than seed production.
4. If you applied a pre-emergent herbicide to your planting beds in spring, now is the time for a second application. Remember to water it generously.
5. July is a good time to prune back June-blooming perennials and shrubs, such as Salvias and Spireas. Mid-season pruning prevents the plants from getting stretched, overgrown, and ‘floppy.’ It also encourages the plants to bloom again for some late summer color.
6. Pinch back fall-blooming perennials in July, like Asters and Sedums, so that they don’t get leggy or bloom too early.
7. Help your lawn and garden survive the dog days of summer by watering deeply and thoroughly. Watering is best done when temperatures are coolest (early morning or during the twilight hours of evening)—the water won’t evaporate as quickly. This allows the lawn to retain more water.
8. Annuals planted in container gardens are heavy feeders because they are watered frequently. Keep these plants robust by alternating feedings with granular and liquid fertilizers. Granular fertilizer slowly releases its nutrients while the liquid gives the plants a quick boost. Plants that produce large quantities of flowers—like hibiscus, mandevilla, and petunias—need to be fed more often than other plants. Fertilize them every 10 days as opposed to every two weeks.
Minnesota Nursery & Landscape Association
Bachman’s Landscaping, 612-861-7646
Otten Bros. Nursery & Landscaping, Inc., 952-473-5425