Friday, August 16, 2013
Posted By: in Gardening

Thus far it has been a spectacular summer! My boot tan is coming along wonderfully as are the mosquito bites from my last camping endeavour. I think I’ll be ok if I don’t see another BBQ’d burger for a fairly long time and I’ve just finished putting 28 large Ziplock bags of blueberries away in the freezer.

Here is the list for August…and don’t feel bad if you have to hand this list over to your awesome neighbour to do while you are away camping…that’s what summer is for. Oh, one last note to the group of folks singing and playing the awesome blues slide guitar at Hicks Lake. You were amazing and the vocals pretty fantastic too. Thanks for the impromptu concert!

Here is the list:

Lawns

If you are allowing your lawn to go dormant (beige), make sure there is not much traffic on it as you will wear patches and then have to reseed in September. Thankfully we’ve had a bit of rain and some cooler weather to take a little pressure off of the watering.

dormant grass

As we get toward the end of August and beginning of September you can apply a bit of fall fertilizer if needed. This typically has higher middle and last numbers on the package. Make sure your lawn is green, not beige when your apply it. Dormant lawn won’t absorb much fertilizer.

Trees

You can get those cool watering bags from City of Surrey to use on your street trees free of charge. Check out City of Surrey webpage. I am not sure if the City of Langley or Vancouver does this but if you need something to give your young trees the best chance we also have some great tree watering bags.

You should be finishing off any light summer pruning of established fruit trees right about now. Nothing thicker than your finger and only a small amount. Summer pruning will slow growth, while winter/dormant pruning speeds it up.

Shrubs

Deadhead roses as needed. You can propagate some of your deciduous shrubs as well as some broadleaf evergreen shrubs by cuttings and layering. Water those that are showing drought stress.

Deadhead roses

 

Garden Beds

Water and deadhead and fertilize as needed. Continue to note any bare patches and take pictures to help adjust your garden design as needed. Contrary to popular belief, summer is a great time to plant - you just need to remember to water!

Fruit, Berries & Veg

It’s blackberry season!! Everybody has their own technique and protective gear for this. I favour just shorts and a t-shirt…less stuff for the thorns to get caught on.

It’s also early apple season, tomato season, and corn season to name a few things. The farmers markets are stuffed with good things right about now!

Pots and Hanging Baskets

Keep watering and fertilizing deadheading and trimming. If your hanging basket needs some tlc soak them in a shallow kiddie pool or some other container to reactivate the planting medium. Once they dry out it’s hard to get them to hold water if you water them as you regularly do, a good soak in a shallow container really helps.

summer hanging basket care

 

P.S. There is no rule that says you have to keep ugly looking baskets and planters until winter. Chuck out the ugly stuff and come by and get some beautiful new plants for the late summer and fall. Ornamental grasses and many perennials are looking gorgeous right now.

Ponds

Keep them tidy and remove fallen leaves. Make sure you have adequate coverage with floaters and oxygenators to prevent algae bloom. I believe you need about 75% surface coverage with at least part of it being with oxygenators.

pond plants

 

That should do for now. If you are so inclined, get together with your friends and make some pickles, or spicy green beans, or jams and jellies. It`s way more fun to do with friends and family.

I hear the farm God`s Little Acre has some great cucumbers for sale Friday`s and Saturdays. This farmer grows all of the produce for the food bank, the cucumbers he grows to help give him a bit of a wage. You can also go and help him pick the produce for an hour or two on Saturdays, call 604 375-1172 or email jassingh65@hotmail.com if you`d like to help out or order some cukes!

Laurelle Olfdord-Down

Laurelle Olfdord-Down

Laurelle is a certified horticulturalist and Landscape designer. She is currently an up and coming apple guru, growing over 120 cultivars which explains her passion for edible garden design. Laurelle works part time for Art’s Nursery. You can also interact with her through Art’s monthly newsletter, our blog and our gardening channel on YouTube.


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