Garden Planner – 0611
With the arrival of summer, the landscape is at its peak in June. Annual and perennial flowers are blooming beautifully, butterflies and bees are pollinating fruits and vegetables, lawns are lush and green. Grab a hat, sunscreen and insect repellent, and enjoy this first month of summer in the garden!
➤ June is the best time to seed, sprig or sod warm-season grasses such as Bermuda, Centipede and Zoysia. Remember that newly planted lawns MUST be watered, but make sure to observe local watering restrictions.
➤ Fertilize only warm-season grasses this month. Fescue should not be fertilized again until cooler weather in the fall.
➤ Did your lawn suddenly turn yellow or die out in patches? You might have an insect or disease problem. Contact your local extension agent to aid in identifying and remedying the problem.
➤ Numerous weeds in the lawn indicate poor growing conditions for turf; improve the condition by changing your maintenance practices: Leave grass clippings on the lawn to decompose and provide nutrients; mow at recommended heights for your particular turf grass; and mow often.
➤ Mulch all of your flowers, shrubs and trees. This will help deter weed growth, keep the roots cooler, conserve water in the soil and provide a more attractive look to your landscape. Aged wood chips or bark, pine straw, recycled-rubber mulch and shredded leaves are all excellent mulches. Make sure that any shredded mulch delivered by local tree-trimmers is allowed to age (a minimum of one month) before spreading around plantings
➤ All spring-flowering shrubs and trees can be pruned soon after blooming and before new growth starts. Pruning after June 30 might reduce the amount of flowering next spring, so get out the tools now!
➤ Japanese beetle season is here! The best method of removal is hand-picking the beetles off of your roses, shrubs and ornamentals and dropping in a bucket of soapy water. Encourage your neighbors to start a treatment program in the fall, treating your lawns for the grubs that develop into Japanese beetles.
➤ Are your patio containers filled with colorful flowers and foliage? Remember, container gardens need much more water than bedding plants. Water daily (Use “gray water” such as condensation collected from your air conditioner or bathtub.), and be sure to fertilize these plants frequently to encourage blooms.
➤ Rapidly growing chrysanthemums should be pinched back to about 3 inches in June, then again later in the summer. If you do this, you won’t be disappointed this fall. You’ll have a spectacular display of color and bloom!
➤ You’ll get more blooms for a longer period of time if you deadhead (remove old flower heads) annuals such as petunias, marigolds, salvia, zinnias and geraniums. Pinching will also provide you with bushier plants. Coleus, for example, should be pinched regularly as flowers form.
➤ Suffer from blossom-end rot on tomatoes, peppers, watermelon and squash? Avoid this problem by proper mulching and watering correctly. Don’t let soil dry out between waterings, and avoid high-nitrogen fertilizer.
➤ Harvest your vegetables regularly as this will encourage further production. Leaving them on the plant or vine too long can alter the taste and texture of edible plants. Pick early in the morning and later afternoon for best results.
What to Plant
➤ Many summer bulbs and tubers can be found at area nurseries. Now that the ground is warm enough, plant caladiums, dahlias, cannas and blackberry lilies for beautiful color in your garden.
➤ For basil and parsley all summer long, plant seeds every two weeks. You’ll have a constant supply of fresh herbs for the kitchen until frost.