For most landscapers, summer means heat, drought and watering needs. This can be especially difficult for landscapers that need to rely on home owners without irrigation systems.
The good news is that there are ways to assist plants and allow them to thrive despite these seasonal challenges. Adjusting summer landscape care accordingly during the hot months can not only provide relief for lawns and gardens, but also for the landscaper.
General Summer Landscape Care
1. Monitor soil moisture. Provide supplemental watering and/or increase watering times on your drip irrigation system during hot, dry periods. Watch for pests and manage them accordingly. Many insects will attack plants when they are under stress from drought.
2. Assess which of your plants are under stress from the heat. Consider moving plants that prefer more moisture and shade to a different, more shady location so they will grow better next year. However, don’t do any transplanting now, wait until late August at the earliest.
Perennials & Grasses Summer Landscape Care
3. Staking gladiolus, dahlias, crocosmia, and other lanky perennials is important to prevent stem breakage and enhance the flower display. The choices of staking materials run the gamut, from bamboo stakes and tobacco sticks to hardware cloth and rebar. Rebar, commonly used in home construction, can be a useful material to create sturdy forms for tall perennials and supporting annual vines. Use heavy gauge wire to form a teepee-like trellis. Garden twist-ties and cable ties attach well to wires. Deadhead (remove spent flower heads) perennial flowers to keep their energy in flower production, not seed development. Pinch out the top buds of dahlias, phlox, and garden mums for bushier plants and more flowers later in the season.
4. Ornamental grasses do not need much care during this period. Most of them should be thriving right now, they should be providing beauty, movement, and texture right now.
Watch soil moisture closely, and add additional mulch around the base of plants if mulch has thinned out. This keeps the roots cool and helps preserve soil moisture.
Trees & Shrubs Summer Landscape Care
5. Early July is the last call for pruning ornamental shrubs, such as azaleas and spring flowering bushes. It is important to water shrubs that are pruned for normal recovery. Evergreen hedges are hand pruned or sheared as needed during the summer months. Boxwoods are best pruned in early spring. Prune to remove faded blooms of Knockout roses. Fertilize roses monthly until September with fertilizers such as: 10-10-10; one gallon of liquid fertilizer dilution; or fish emulsion.
Following these summer landscape care tips will help to keep your landscapes looking great throughout the summer and into the fall. Get more seasonal information by downloading the Country Springs Wholesale Nursery Information Guide. Click on the ebook image NOW! >