July Gardening Checklist
- Snip off the browned-out flower heads of perennials that have bloomed already, such as salvia, dianthus, daylilies, foamflowers, veronica, iris and brunnera. This is commonly called “deadheading” and not only neatens the garden but may encourage repeat blooming.
- Watch the water. This is the hottest, driest month in much of the U.S., so check the soil moisture and water accordingly. Pay particular attention to plants planted this spring.
- If there’s no rain, apply 1 inch of water each week or 10 days from the hose or watering can. Early-morning and early-evening watering is best.
- To keep your hanging baskets and flower pots growing evenly, turn the containers a quarter of a turn every few days. That gives all sides an equal shot at sunlight so you don’t end up with lush, dense growth on just one side.
- Harvest early-planted vegetables as they’re ready, such as potatoes, cabbage, onions, leeks and beets. Immediately replant with crops that grow in summer’s heat and will mature before frost, such as beans, cucumbers, zucchini, melons and more beets. Apply Preen Vegetable Garden Weed Preventer to all your newly planted veggies when they are established (at least 2-3 inches tall).
- Remove water sprouts (from trunk) and suckers (sprouts from roots) on crabapple and other ornamental fruit trees.
- Reapply Preen Garden Weed Preventer Plus Plant Food every three months to prevent summer and winter annual weed seeds from germinating and growing in flower beds and around trees and shrubs. It also has a well-balanced fertilizer to keep plant growth healthy and flower production strong.
- Don’t remove clippings from the lawn unless grass is excessively tall. Clippings return nutrients to the soil and do not contribute to thatch buildup.
- Start seeds of broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts and ornamental kale and cabbage for late-summer plantings and fall harvest.
- This is peak month for Japanese beetles – the bug bane of rose-growers. Hand-pick them, repel them with neem oil or mint-based sprays, or use an insecticide if they’re really bad. Beetle traps usually make the problem worse unless everyone else around you is also using them.
Photo courtesy Purdue University
Photo courtesy National Garden Bureau