Annuals and Perennials
If annuals in your hanging baskets, containers or flower borders are getting leggy, give them a “haircut” by pruning them lightly, fertilize them and they will be looking good as new within a few weeks.
Stop pinching chrysanthemums by July 16th.
Daylilies, rudbeckia, phlox, veronica, ligularia, and tickseed are a few of the perennials that bloom this month.
Fruits and Vegetables
Fertilize fruits and vegetables as needed with a slow-release vegetable food such as Merrifield Flowering Plant Food or Garden-tone.
Stake tomato plants or use Merrifield’s custom made two-piece tomato cage. This tomato cage can be placed around mature plants and is made from extra heavy gauge wire.
If necessary, spray tomato plants and other vegetables to control diseases.
Kentucky Bluegrass and Tall Fescue are cool season grasses. Growth of these lawns will slow and color will fade for the summer. Applying Fast Acting Iron will help keep it green without excessive growth.
Avoid frequent (daily) light watering as this leads to shallow root systems and promotes the spread of disease.
Keep your mowing height high, 3’-4” through the summer. This encourages deep roots and helps shade the soil for improved heat and drought tolerance.
Zoysia is a warm season grass and can be fertilized now with Merrifield Premium 26-0-12 Lawn Food.
Do not apply weed controls when temperatures are above 85 degrees F.
Trees and Shrubs
Plants that provide color in the month of July include crape myrtles, spireas, hydrangeas, summersweet, hypericum, butterfly bush, daylilies, rudbeckia, phlox, veronica, ligularia, tickseed and much more. Visit the nursery and see these beautiful plants in bloom.
Gator bags provide a great way to keep trees watered during hot and dry months. These bags, which can hold up to 20 gallons of water, are secured to the trunk of the tree, where they release the water slowly to the root ball over the course of 15-20 hours.
Do not prune azaleas and rhododendrons after the second week of July for they soon will begin setting their buds for next year’s blooms.
If needed, set Japanese beetle traps up, but away from the garden.
Spray roses with Ortho Rose Pride or Immunox Plus to keep black spot and other problems under control.
Spray for bagworms on arborvitae and other evergreens. Use Sevin or Thuricide.
Lacebugs can be controlled on azaleas, andromeda and other plants now with Bayer 3-in-1 Insect, Disease and Mite Control.
Clear pond water can be achieved with proper plant balance. If the pond is in full sun, 50-70% of its surface must be covered with foliage such as floating heart, water hyacinth, water poppy, water lily, or lotus.
Underwater grasses produce oxygen, helping to maintain D.O. Levels. Grasses will improve water clarity by using nitrate.
Time to fertilize all water lilies and lotus once a month to keep them blooming continuously throughout the season.
Time to switch from spring fish food to summer fish food since water temperatures have risen above 70 degrees. At higher temperatures, fish metabolize at a faster rate, thus creating a need for more protein.
Use Mosquito Patrol or Mosquito Off to keep mosquitoes, gnats and black flies under control.
Use Round-Up to kill weeds and grasses in brick patios and walks.
Assuring that plants have the correct amount of water is the single most important step you can take in maintaining a healthy garden. New plants and those growing in containers will dry out faster than mature established plants growing in the ground. Root competition from shade trees may cause soil to dry faster than soil shaded by the house or deck. This is why we follow Merrifield’s Golden Rule to “Check for moisture before you water.”