Here’s what you should know about gardening in August

By Stefanie Donahue

It takes a flick of a switch to power on your air conditioner and cool off in the summertime, but for plants in your outdoor garden, it’s not so easy to beat the heat.

According to retail manager at Van Wingerden Nursery Jennifer Witman, summer is the best time to focus on maintaining your garden, as opposed to planting.

“Maintaining a healthy summer garden means keeping things clean and watered while also enjoying our garden friends like birds and butterflies,” Witman said.

It’s important to achieve a perfect balance of water for your plants in the summer, she said.

Most hanging plants should be watered daily, each time until you start to notice water dripping out of the drainage holes in the flower pot, she said.

Planters and garden beds should also be watered daily on days that exceed 85 degrees in temperature, every other day on days that fall around 70 degrees and only when the soil feels dry on cooler or damp days.

“Have fun with summer planting, too,” she said. “There are many, many amazing summer/fall-blooming perennials that will take your garden through September in blazing color.”

Some examples include, Echinacea (coneflowers), rudbeckia hirta (black-eyed Susan), Monarda (bee balm), Coreopsis (tickseed) and Perovskia atriplicifolia (Russian sage), she said.

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