California isn’t exactly known for its heaping mounds of rainfall, which can make it a bit of a challenge to keep your greenery healthy, especially in the summer. And the fact that temperatures can soar throughout the summer months can make things even more difficult for homeowners tending to their landscaping.
To help keep your greenery healthy throughout the sizzling months of the summer, keep the following tips in mind.
Mulching your garden can help trap moisture and keep your plants cool and moist for longer periods of time, long after they’ve been watered. Mulch also helps to keep weeds at bay, which is important because weeds compete with plants for water. Besides, mulch looks great and can help clean up the look of your garden.
Water During the Cooler Parts of the Day
If you water your garden at peak temperature, most of the water will evaporate before it’s able to reach deep into the soil. The best time of day to water your garden is first thing in the morning long before the temperatures soar, which will help to keep your garden well hydrated throughout the day.
Keep a Consistent Watering Schedule
Certain greenery requires consistent watering in order for it to do well, including vegetable gardens and flower patches. Failure to water on a consistent basis can cause damage to your flowers, such as rotting of the blossoms and even a decline in flowering altogether. To make sure your plants are watered consistently, create a schedule to help you stay on track. If you’ve got an irrigation system, set it on a timer to run at the same time.
Keep an Eye Out For Signs of Plant Stress
Hopefully, your plants and shrubs will remain healthy throughout the year, but there may be times when they need a little more attention. To prevent any damage to your plants, be on the lookout for any signs of stress. This can include:
- Brown leaves
- Drooping and wilting
- Rotting roots
- Yellow falling leaves
- Rolled leaves
- Petal loss
- Flowers that easily fall
If you notice any one of these signs, be sure to water your plants thoroughly right away. If you catch these issues early, your plants should be able to recover.
Consider Drip Irrigation
Rather than watering your garden with a sprinkler, consider installing a drip irrigation system. These types of systems can help keep your garden moist and healthy in a more efficient manner if managed properly. In California where water is a valuable commodity, conserving as much water as possible is important, and drip irrigation systems may be able to help.
These systems have been shown to be more effective at delivering water to plants as well, even more than sprinklers. Further, there tends to be less nutrient loss thanks to minimized leaching.
Choose Native Plants and Those That Don’t Require Much Watering
A simple way to keep your landscaping looking hearty throughout the summer is to simply plant species that are native to your location. Native plants require very little maintenance and water in order to maintain their health. This can help reduce the amount of time and money you spend watering.
Add Compost Regularly
Regularly adding compost to your garden’s soil can benefit it in a number of ways:
- Add rich microorganisms
- Help retain water more effectively
- Add nutrients for optimal plant growth
- Promote aeration and drainage
- Avoid leaching by releases nutrients slowly
- Improve soil structure
You can make your own rich compost by adding things such as vegetable peels, coffee grinds, eggshells, tea bags, grass cuttings, and plant prunings. These items break down quickly and provide both moisture and nitrogen to the soil.
Prune Your Shrubs and Trees
Regularly pruning your trees and shrubbery is important, especially during particularly dry periods, which can help effectively reduce stress on the greenery.
Choose Slow-Release Lawn Fertilizers
Organic fertilizers that slowly release nutrients into the soil can provide added nutrients to the grass, improve soil structure, and encourage soil microbes, making your lawn less needy for water.
Mow the Grass to Proper Heights
You may be tempted to cut your grass too short in an effort to minimize the number of times you have to mow the law. But cutting too short can discourage root growth and reduce water retention. Instead, cutting to proper heights and leaving the grass blades a bit longer can keep the lawn cool and increase water retention.
The Bottom Line
Landscaping is definitely not a set-it-and-forget-it type of deal. Instead, it requires regular maintenance and attention in order to ensure its vitality, especially during particularly hot and dry periods. Keep these tips in mind to make sure that your landscaping stays in pristine condition throughout the sizzling summer months!