Hard to believe it is almost the 4th of July already!  By now our gardens are growing like crazy, struggling under all the water or somewhere in between.  Today I have a few garden tips to keep your garden looking beautiful and producing lettuce, beans, tomatoes and all that good stuff too.

Deadhead annuals or trim back to encourage more blooms.  Be sure to fertilize too.  All of this rain washes fertilizer out of the soil much more quickly.   Perennials can also be cut back when flowers are spent.  Varieties like coreopsis, gaillardia,  some daylilies, daisies and nepeta or catmint can continue to flower after they have been cut back.

No one likes weeding, but keep after those buggers sooner than later.  Weeds steal nutrients and water from our flowers and vegetables and they are much easier to deal with when they are small.  Mulching also helps control weeds.  A few inches of mulch around your plants will keep weeds down and also help with moisture retention should it ever stop raining.

Finally, be on the lookout for signs of disease – leaf spots, white looking fuzz, etc.  This ongoing stretch of cloudy, wet and relatively cool weather is just perfect for plant diseases to show up.  We have seen them on everything to annuals, perennials, shrubs and trees.  Larger and established plants may look unsightly, but can tolerate these problems until the weather improves.  In severe cases, a fungicide is recommended.  Annual flowers, like petunias, are a bit more touchy so spotting problems early is important.  Check your plants every day or two and bring in a sample for our staff to check out if you aren’t sure.  We can help you keep your baskets and containers looking great all summer.