Monday, August 6, 2012

Early August Garden Quick Hits

KCB is back with some very timely garden tips for Early August!

 Some things that crossed my mind while working for my clients:

Debris Happens:
·         Don’t save your raking for the fall.  With the rain followed by strong winds a lot of leaves fall. As these collect under your plants it makes the perfect hiding place for snails and slugs. A small hand or spring rake works well.  I also took the time to gently pull away any of the browned foliage from Daylilies.

Try to remember for September:
·         Soon it will be time to divide & transplant so take stock now.  Take a picture of areas that are overcrowded or need rearranging.  As the foliage and flowers fade so will our memories.  The picture will serve as a reminder for this not only season but also next spring when planning.

Deadhead (Click HERE for the timeless post: Grateful Deadheading!)

Japanese Beetles:
·         If you are one of the brave souls that are hand picking these pests and placing them in soapy water look closely before condemning them to die.  Look for white spots on the top of their head or directly behind their head. If so marked then this beetle gets a reprieve.  These are the eggs of a parasitic fly.  I won’t go into detail as to what happens next, I just know that it will help deplete the surplus population of this perennial pest.

Keep it clean:
·         This is the time of year that the diseases of our gardens thrive. In most cases affected foliage can be cut away then plant can be treated with a fungicide. Before you begin your attack have handy alcohol wipes or a mild bleach solution.  Why?  To wipe your pruners, shears, scissors or other tools of the trade.  While a disease of fungus may not be transferred from one plant to another, why take a chance.  As a precaution I begin each day by treating my tools and end each day the same.  Also do not compost any questionable foliage or plants.

·         Another photo opportunity.  Take a picture of your plants that may have powdery mildew, rust spots etc.  Next spring use these pictures to proactively treat plants.  Additionally, it will reveal plants that may need dividing to avoid reoccurrence. Lack of good air flow is one cause for powdery mildew. Less crowding will allow for existing plants to thrive.

Haven’t touched your garden journal since May?  Haven’t started? I’ve included some things of note to note in your journal. Even if you don’t want to write, it’s a place to paste your picture and why you took one. On the other hand, you can simply print off this page and call it a day!

KCB is a professional gardener and friend who does wonderful work in the Greater Portland area. KCB is also an accredited Master Gardener by the Cooperative Extension Service and we are honored to have KCB as part of our Skillin's Garden Log family. KCB can also be found at the awesome Finishing Touches website.
KCB for Skillin's Greenhouses
August 6, 2012

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