Monday, August 13, 2012

Another good article on Gardens.  Note for item 6,
typically we don't fertilize during hot periods.

10 Ways to Care for Your Garden in a Hot, Dry Summer

During the summer it’s not unusual for the temperature to reach above 100 degrees in many parts of the country, even in the shade, which is a cause of concern for anyone who is trying to nurture a garden. Trying to combat an untimely death to plants and flowers that you have lovingly cultivated and nurtured can be like fighting an uphill battle in the never-ending heat waves that plague summer months. However your plants don’t have to disappear once the summertime hits and, armed with a few helpful tips and tricks, your garden can thrive despite record-breaking temperatures and the relentless rays of the sun.
  1. Choosing plants that thrive in your normal weather pattern and the area of the country you live in is the first step to having a healthy garden.
  2. You can’t always forecast when the summer will be unseasonably hot and dry, however keeping up with the weather forecasts from your weather stations will help in making decisions to keep your garden growing during a dry spell.
  3. One water-saving method is to use mulch.  How much mulch you need will depend on the size of your garden, but mulch is known to help retain the moisture from rain or from your own watering system.
  4. Never water during the heat of the day.  The sun has a way of evaporating the water faster than the plants can receive nourishment from the water. Try to water early in the morning or later at night when the sun isn’t out to ensure your plants get the most water possible.
  5. Use a watering spike – this is simply a sprinkler nozzle on a large plastic reticulation sprinklerextension with a connector to the hose
  6. In times of heat shock, a seaweed extract based liquid fertilizer treatment often reduces heat stress and it may help protect the plant in future. You can read more about that here.
  7. Using a water wand will aid in watering plants without force.  Spraying too hard may harm the plants during drought.
  8. Conserving water should be a way of life, and knowing to use our supply correctly will also aid in keeping plants healthy.  For instance, use the wand on the hose to water the roots.  The roots actually give the growth above it a drink from its supply.
  9. A soaker hose laid around the plant on the ground will also soak the plants and use less water
  10. Understanding that there is no life form that can live without water, we must plan our gardens knowing we have a good water supply close by.  Some plants we can over water, while others need more TLC where a drink of water is concerned.
Hopefully, despite the long, hot summer days, by using these tips you have success when harvest time comes. By carefully paying attention the temperatures and providing your plants with plenty of water and love, your garden should survive the hottest part of the year.

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