Even though August temperatures can be unpleasantly hot, the garden still needs to be tended to. Don’t miss out on these important garden tasks this month:
Light pruning & feeding: If your landscape is looking a little tired from the summer heat, August is a great time to do light pruning on roses, shrubs, and perennials. Pruning will encourage a new flush of fall foliage and blooms. Remove spent foliage from irises, grasses and groundcovers. These plants also benefit from being fertilized in late August, along with pruning, to help them strengthen their root system and new growth through the fall months. Fertilizing your shrubs, roses and perennials too far into fall can result in new growth on plants too late in the season that could be damaged by frost.
Deadhead and Harvest: In order for your garden look its best this fall you will need to stay on top of deadheading and harvesting this month. Deadheading prevents flowering plants from expending too much energy on producing seed and instead grow new flowers and roots. Continue harvesting herbs such as basil and oregano, and summer vegetables, regularly through fall.
Fall vegetables: Depending on your location and temperatures you may need to start sowing your fall vegetable seeds outdoors toward the end of the month. In warm climates vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, broccoli and related varieties are grown fall through winter. Timing is always important with edible crops, so don’t put off getting your seeds started.
Irrigation check: Make sure your irrigation system is working properly and not wasting water. Check for leaks or pressure problems. Consider setting up soaker hoses or drip irrigation for newly planted shrubs and trees. Soaker hoses deliver moisture deep into the soil with less water wasted to evaporation and runoff.