Gardening season is in full swing, and there is much to do to keep everything growing and thriving. June is the month of maintenance. Most of the vegetables are planted, mulched, watered, and growing. Now it’s time to check on everything, monitor for problems, and of course, start planning for fall! Follow this checklist of eight helpful tips to ensure your plants remain healthy and reach their full potential this summer:
The days are getting hotter and drier, and our poor plants may need extra or more frequent watering. Water in the early morning, so the plants have time to soak it all in before the sun hits. Check the soil around vegetables and perennials at least once a week to ensure they are getting proper hydration.
Now is the time to fertilize container flowers and hanging basket flowers, as well as perennials in the garden. This gives them the extra boost needed to get them through the summer in fine blooming fashion. For many spring-flowering shrubs, like rhododendrons and azaleas, this nutrient boost improves next year’s buds and flowers.
It’s always best to be several steps ahead of the weeds, so don’t put this off. The weeds may just be a small thing now, but if left alone, they’ll be big things in the blink of an eye. If you see them, pull them. Weeds take nutrients away from other plants and may cause your vegetables and perennials to underperform. A layer of mulch helps keep the weeds away.
Investigate for common pests like slugs, snails, Japanese beetles, and aphids and look for diseases that may be showing up. Catching these issues early and getting them under control ensures a more successful garden. Don’t forget to look underneath leaves for insect eggs!
Annuals and long-blooming perennials need the spent blooms removed so the plants can focus on growing more flowers.
Add stakes or trellises where needed for vining flowers and tall vegetables.
Spring flowering shrubs have finished blooming. Now is the time to trim them or shape them so they will have time to grow before setting next year’s blooms. Hedges benefit from a bit of trimming, shearing, pruning, and sculpting. Remove any dead branches. Now’s the best time to do it!
Plant a new crop of cucumbers, squash, and tomatoes to keep the crops coming in. Pumpkins, green beans, okra, eggplant, lima beans, peppers, and sweet potatoes should be planted now for summer and fall harvests.
Gardening in June is a varied adventure, with many different tasks to accomplish. Pick a few to do each weekend, and you’ll get it all done with no trouble. Taking care of garden tasks in a timely way always makes it better later on.