When it’s hot, make sure your garden stays hydrated. Deep water in the early morning or evening. Pay extra attention to plants in containers.
It’s normal for some large-leaf plants to wilt in the afternoon. Check the soil for moisture before watering. A blanket of cooling organic mulch such as shredded bark or leaves will help retain that moisture and keep roots comfortable.
▪ Keep harvesting tomatoes, peppers, squash, melons and eggplant to stretch your harvest a few more weeks.
▪ To prevent spread of fungal disease and insect issues, clean up debris around fruit trees. Don’t leave dropped fruit to rot.
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▪ After cleaning up, fertilize fruit trees for better production next year. (That includes citrus.) Use a slow-release fertilizer and irrigate before application.
▪ Stop stalling and start the fall vegetable garden. Plant onions, lettuce, peas, radishes, turnips, beets, carrots and potatoes directly into vegetable beds.
▪ Transplant cabbage, broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower, as well as lettuce seedlings.
▪ For spring flowers, sow seeds of California poppies, clarkia and African daisies.
▪ Don’t forget winter color. Transplant cool-weather annuals such as pansies, violas, fairy primroses, calendulas, stocks and snapdragons. They’ll brighten those gray days in December.