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Garden Solutions - August 2010

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Local Blogs - Hillermann Nursery & Florist
Wednesday, 28 July 2010
A patio with landscaping and outdoor living items             August brings us the dog days of summer... there is no doubt about that. If you have not started enjoying "Outdoor Living," it is NOT TOO LATE. There are designers in the landscape industry to help you with ideas that will turn your yard into an outdoor oasis. More and more people are retreating to their own backyards. Look for inspiration at every "independent lawn and garden retailer." Consider adding a water feature to "cool" things down a bit.

            Here are a few health benefits of enjoying the outdoors. To the non-gardener or hard-core athlete, gardening may seem like a sedentary activity, but it is not. Activities like carting mulch around in a wheelbarrow, digging in the soil, plus all that bending and lifting involved in planting really does burn calories. Studies show that depending on the activity, gardening can burn between 250 and 500 calories per hour. For many people gardening is a creative outlet, for others it is the change of scenery from the daily grind that makes a difference. Still others find that the satisfaction of reaping the rewards (those tasty fruits and vegetables, and beautiful flowers) of your efforts is what helps to reduce stress levels. So try it out and let me know what you think. I would love to hear your gardening stories. You can email me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

           You desperately need to continue watering during this month. There are many ways to supply water economically and easily, just ask the experts. In-ground irrigation systems are available as well as drip irrigation systems. Drip irrigation systems are very easy for the homeowner to install. Wildlife in your yard, as well as all new and established plantings, need your help during hot, dry summer days. Deep root watering is the most beneficial for established plantings. If you want to learn more about this procedure, ask the experts.

            Stop and visit the Washington Town & Country Fair this year (August 4 - 8). Be sure to visit these two educational areas: the Agri-Land booth (near the livestock barns) and Hillermann's "Gardening Solutions" (near the Family Activity Tent). They both offer hands on learning opportunities and free handouts on great outdoor gardening activities!

Here are tips for the heat and drought period of August:

  • You should apply lawn insecticides until August 15 to guard off grubs, fleas, ticks, etc. in the yard.
  • Japanese beetles can be eliminated by trapping. Beetle traps are available and safe/organic to use.
  • Think "green" and recycle your planting containers.
  • Keep deadheading spent annual and perennial flowers for continued bloom.
  • Feed garden mums and asters for the last time.
  • Monitor plants for spider mite activity. Hose affected plants off with a forceful spray of water, or spray with Bonide Eight (with Permethrin). To check for spider mites, hold a white piece of paper under a suspected branch. Tap on the branch and then run your hand across the paper. If you get red streaks, you have spider mites!
  • Roses should receive no further nitrogen fertilizer after the end of August to prevent the production of late tender growth that could be damaged by fall frosts.
  • Soak shrubs periodically during dry spells with enough water to moisten the soil to a depth of 8-10 inches.
  • Prune to shape hedges for the last time this season.
  • Once bagworms reach full size, insecticides are ineffective. Pruning off and burning or discarding of large bags provides better control.
  • Watch for fall webworm activity. Apply Fertilome Bagworm and Tent Caterpillar Spray when spotted.
  • Cultivate Strawberries and apply weed preventer immediately, after fertilizing to help with fall germinating weeds such as henbit or chickweed.
  • Protect ripening fruits from birds by covering plants with bird netting. This is a black mesh netting and is readily available at Garden Centers.
  • Pinch the growing tips of gourds once the adequate fruit set amount is achieved. This directs energy into the ripening fruits, rather than vine production.
  • Broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower transplants should be set out for the fall garden. Also, sow seeds of lettuce, radish, beans, beets, spinach and turnips now. (Spinach may germinate better if the seeds are refrigerated.)
  • For additional information about garden tips for summer and all seasons, check out this website

Time to go...  See you in the Garden!!

Sandi Hillermann McDonald

Articles posted to the Local Blogs section are the opinions of the authors and not necessarily that of or WASHMO Media, LLC.

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