Summer is here, and the temperature is rising. While there are so many reasons to celebrate the warmer weather, it does mean you’ll need to put in a little effort into keeping your garden healthy. Hot weather brings unwelcome pests, dry soils, withered plants, and crowded weeds, to name just a few.
And since you’ll be outdoors so much more, now that the weather is nicer, you don’t want to be looking at a dead and dreary garden. It’s time to put on those gardening gloves and get down and dirty. Don’t worry; it won’t take too much of your time to get things looking bright and healthy again.
With just a little time and good products, you’ll be ready to host a pool party or braai in your beautiful garden soon. This post looks at some summer gardening tips and tricks to help get your garden thriving this season.
- It’s always best to water very early in the morning and evening when evaporation is low and – depending on where you are in the country – where restrictions aren’t in place.
- Ensure your sprinkler systems are only watering where there are plants, so there’s no wastage.
- To retain moisture, spread a deep layer of mulch in your flower beds. This will also help keep the temperature of the soil lower and allow your roots to function optimally.
- Add peat, vermiculite, perlite, or clay aggregate for your plants in baskets and pots. These will all help reduce the need for constant watering.
- Weeding will lessen the fight for water amongst plant life.
- Are areas of your garden receiving less rain than others? Don’t forget to water these undercover spaces.
- Careful not to overwater or underwater your pot plants! An ideal way to ensure your potted friends are getting the right amount of water and oxygen is to add Biogrow’s Integrate to your water – it reduces evaporation through your pot plant and makes oxygen more available to your plant’s roots (over-watering drowns the roots). Your requirement on water can reduced by HALF as a result of Integrate’s technology.
- Have you noticed gaps in your beds or hanging baskets? Fill them with annuals in colour bags and water well.
- Hold in as much moisture as you can while decreasing evaporation by planting ground cover. This will also keep the nutrients where they belong – in the soil.
- Deadhead any of your summer annuals that need it and replace it with new seedlings that better endure the heat.
- Check your flowers in containers near the middle of summer, and feed them with an organic liquid fertilizer, such as Biotrissol, every couple of weeks.
- Don’t forget to trim and shape any evergreen hedges or topiaries.
- If you’re looking to fill your shady areas with colour, go for Impatiens, New Guinea Impatiens, Coleus, Begonias, and Hypoestes.
- You will have more choices for your sunnier areas. Go for Dianthus, Lobelias, Petunias, Salvias, Celosias, Marigolds, Gazanias, Zinnias, and Alyssum.
- A hardy and colouful bush for your garden is Bougainvillea or Hibiscus. It comes in many colours and will endure excessive heat and infrequent watering; they are summer babies for sure.
FRUIT & VEG
- If you’re after lettuces, plant them at weekly intervals in a place that only gets morning sun, so you are never without a loose-leafed salad.
- Make sure your vines have good airflow between them during these hot months.
- Take note of which of your fruit and veg have a shallow root system and water them daily, while you can water larger plants perhaps twice a week.
- Fertilise veg and herbs every couple of weeks with organic liquid fertiliser, such as SeaBrix or Biotrissol and don’t forget about your fruit trees.
- If you don’t already have a portable shade cloth structure, it’s advised to get one made up. Make it easy to move around to protect your more sensitive plants. Your fruit and veg will struggle with the intense summer heat.
- These herbs and veg will also need mulch. What can we say? It does the trick.
- Harvest your veg frequently; this helps increase production.
SUMMER PESTS TO ZAP
- Roses often have fungal infestations and aphids around this time, so spray them fortnightly with a biopesticide such as Copper Soap, Phyta and Pyrol. Also, check for red spider mites on the petals.
- Like us, you probably love the sound of the Christmas beetle heralding in summer with their sound, but they’ll make quick work of your roses and other leaves at night. They bury themselves in the soil around your plants in the day, so get out some organic insecticide spray to control these little guys. A great option is Bioneem.It’s effective against aphids, fruit fly, spider mites, weevils, and worms. Created from the seed kernels of the Neem tree, it’s a fantastic insect natural insect repellent.
- Lawn caterpillars, mole crickets, or fungus in the lawn may also appear around this time, as well as aphids, whitefly, and fungal disease. Treat these easily with Copper soap or Phyta (fungal infections) and Biotrissol (aphids and whitefly)
- If it’s those pesky mollusks constantly bothering your plants, Ferramol is an innovative organic molluscicide that protects plants without harming other insects and the rest of your garden. A great snail and slug bait option.
FERTILISING YOUR GARDEN IN SUMMER
It’s best to start fertilising in the spring – that goes for lawns and spring-flowering plants, but if you haven’t, it’s not too late for your summer-flowering annuals. Biotrissol is a good option for fertiliser in the summer months. It’s a foliar food that stimulates healthy plant growth and the formation of blooms while including all the vital nutrients from the natural fermentation of sugar beet.
WHERE SHOULD YOU FOCUS YOUR FERTILISING?
- Nip the dead flowers from your spring annuals and fertilise them, so they are ready for next season.
- Strawberries, hydrangeas can be fed with fertiliser in summer too. Roses will need some rose food and organic insecticide, such as Pyrol with added preventative fungal control.
- Summer-flowering plants are ready for fertiliser now, and keep feeding any bulbs you have until their foliage dies down.
- Your lawn could also do with fertiliser and regular watering to help its root system. Get rid of weeds by carefully spraying weeds with Finalsan – a fast acting, non-selective herbicide that controls common annual weeds, moss and algae.
- Boost your veggies and herbs with a SeaBrix spray which provides your plant with a full spectrum of micro nutrients to keep them at optimal health.
These summer gardening tips aren’t too tricky to implement. So why not get the kids involved? Make them earn their pocket money by helping out in the garden. And if you’re looking for some excellent organic products to help you along the way, that’s where BIOGROW comes in.