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Tips for a Beautiful Summer Garden

No matter what zone you live in, plants definitely start feeling the heat of early summer in June. It's a fantastic time to enjoy the colors of the season by taking some time to sit back and enjoy your hard work from the spring. And though the growing season is underway, you can still do more summer gardening while dodging the hottest times of the day.

Prune evergreens and disorderly plants: This is the time when commercial tree growers get out and shape trees for the Christmas season. You can also prune, pinch or shear junipers, cypresses and conifers. Annuals also benefit from pinching.

Devote time to perennials: Though it's only the beginning of summer, you should plan and plant the types of perennials you would like to see not only in summer, but the fall and spring as well. Also, divide and transplant any spring-flowering perennials that are no longer blooming.

Plant vegetables: It's the last chance to plant warm weather vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers, corn and beans. The more time the plants are in the ground, the larger the harvest you'll reap.

Care for your lawn: While we appreciate April showers for our lawn and garden, the weeds that sprout aren't so welcome. You can eliminate many weeds now. You also have time to reseed or overseed your lawn if desired.

Mulch in the garden: Mulching will help keep soil and roots cooler and retain moisture during the hot summer months. It also makes a great finishing touch as an addition to landscaping.

Set out potted plants: Since the threat of frost has past, you don't have to worry about leaving potted plants, such as window boxes and hanging baskets outside. But remember to shelter more delicate plants from the afternoon sun.

Stake tall plants: Staking and other support, not only help plants, such as peonies stay upright and grow appropriately, but they keep your garden looking neater as well. Don't forget about climbing plants like clematis either, which look tidier when positioned on a trellis or other support.

Deadhead flowers: While deadheading begins as a spring chore, it is important to deadhead flowers through the summer to promote blooms and strengthen the plant. Self-seeding plants are those to especially look out for, so you can control the spread of flowers in your garden.

Water deeply: Since the summer sun bakes anything that stays in its path too long, remember to water for the health of your plants' overall growth, as well as their roots. Watering deeply promotes root growth into the soil, rather than on the surface, which helps protect roots from the sun's rays.

Plant bulbs for future seasons: If you plant to enjoy autumn's brilliance with some colorful plants, plant those bulbs mid-summer. Wait until late summer to plant spring-blooming bulbs.
“To harmonize with the surrounding scenery, to enter into the spirit of the landscape, is the highest beauty of domestic building.”
— J.J. Thomas