JULY GARDENING TIPS
Sow seeds indoors now for late summer and fall transplants such as marigolds, zinnia, petunia, portulaca, and ageratum.
Tomato transplants can be planted now for fall gardens. The best varieties to make it through the intense summer heat are Surefire, Celebrity, Heatwave, Merced, and cherry types.
Remove faded flowers from plants before they set seed in order to keep them growing and producing more flowers. A light application of fertilizer every four to six weeks would also encourage growth.
Remove dead, diseased, and damaged branches from trees and shrubs.
Apply a slow-release iron fertilizer to plants that are showing yellow leaves with green veins. Be sure to keep iron off of sidewalks and any other areas that could be stained.
Check any new additions to your landscape to be sure that they are getting adequate water—newly transplanted plants require much more water than established ones. Hold off on planting anything but bedding plants during the summer—fall will be a much easier time to establish new shrubs and trees.
Check for blackspot on roses and spray with a registered fungicide.
Check for evidence of spider mites, which are common in hot weather. Look for tan speckles on lower leaves and/or spider webbing. Plants may turn brown and crisp where severe infestations occur. Hose plants down with a strong jet of water several days in a row to wash the mites off.
Check for white grubs by digging into the soil of your lawn and flowerbeds. These insect larvae appear about six weeks after the major June beetle flight has occurred. If you find five to seven grubs within one square foot of soil, treat with Merit, or any other insecticide labeled for grub worms. Follow label directions for application.
Water garden and lawn only as needed—not necessarily on all three of your designated watering days. Give plants a thorough soaking rather than frequent, light sprinklings. Be sure to avoid runoff of water into streets.