How Do I Keep Squirrels Out Of My Flower Planters Harvest Summer Vegetables – Start Planning for a Fall Garden

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Harvest Summer Vegetables – Start Planning for a Fall Garden

Gardeners are busy harvesting summer vegetables in August, but it’s also time to start planning the fall garden.

Choose your summer vegetables: Even if you don’t have green thumbs, if you give just a little attention (but a lot of water) to your zucchini, squash and tomato plants, you’ll be rewarded with an almost non-stop supply of vegetables throughout August. Make sure you pick your vegetables regularly to encourage more growth so the plants will continue to produce throughout the fall.

Plant your autumn and winter vegetables: It’s too late to plant summer crops, but it’s time to plant seeds or starter plants that produce cool-season vegetables such as scallions, carrots, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, mustard, radishes and beets. Seeds and young plants will benefit from August’s warm soil. If you plant the seeds in flats, place the flats in partial shade to avoid direct August heat. Transplant the seedlings into the garden when they are about 4 inches tall.

Water Smart: Even drought tolerant plants need a lot of water during the heat of summer. Soak them well at least twice a week. Potted plants are particularly sensitive to heat damage. If they continue to wilt after daily watering, consider moving the containers to shade or partial shade until the weather cools. Water in the early morning to reduce evaporation and water longer to give the water a chance to travel deeper into the soil. Cover the soil with a layer of mulch to better retain moisture.

Prune the roses: Remove loose flowers and stems. Prune roses only lightly – just enough to encourage the growth of new flowers by fall. Water regularly.

Prepare for onion harvesting: Homemade onions have a stronger flavor than onions you find in the store. The basic rule is to stop watering onions when the leaves start to dry. When most of the leaves wither and fall, bend the rest to the ground and wait another two weeks before harvesting. After they are harvested, leave them in the sun for a day. Spread them out in a dry, sunny place for another two weeks. This will ensure that the outer layers are free of moisture and prevent the growth of black fungus on the onion.

Protect the fruit from predators: Place bird netting on the fruit trees two or three weeks before the fruit begins to ripen. This will prevent the birds from feeding on the fruit of the trees. Use rocks or bricks to secure the net so that birds, rabbits or squirrels don’t accidentally get trapped inside.

Plant for color and fragrance: August is a good time to plant shrubs and trees that add color and fragrance to your garden all year round. For a pop of color, consider begonias, impatiens, oleander, Chinese hibiscus and firebush. For fragrance, plant gardenias, jasmine and lilac.

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