Summer Lovin' and a Little Maintenance

Summer Lovin’ and a Little Maintenance

Gardens in summer are a sight to behold, and this season has been no exception. It has been a banner summer for big blooms from iris, peonies, roses, lilac, ninebark and many more. Perennial borders are stunning, following the nice heat we’ve had the last week or so. Keeping things watered has been challenging but we continue to encourage you to water deeply and thoroughly during hot sunny days. As I write this, I’m listening to soft rain that followed the clamoring downpour and thunderstorm that hit our part of the city about 3am this morning, but the rain barrels are full and the lawn and gardens are soaked through. I have a little reprieve from the daily watering of pots and new plants.

Time spent in the gardens this time of year is often a morning stroll to assess how things are doing, a little weeding and some deadheading and staking. Deadheading involves removing spent blooms to tidy up your plant, it will prevent seeds from forming however. Seed heads are great for winter interest, but you should also watch those plants that are rampant self-seeders, and I still like a tidy plant after the blooms have done their thing. The bleeding heart and salvia in my garden often rebloom if deadheaded early enough. Deadheading should be done regularly on your annual displays, this will promote continual blooming as the energy goes to producing more flowers rather than seeds.

Staking plants provides support to floppy stems, heavy blooms and tall plants. It is best to have good staking materials – bamboo, hoops, ornamental stakes, etc – available prior to the plants getting overgrown as it’s much easier to install when plants are small, also many a time I’ve had to grab a random stick as that was all I could find. There are many great staking products available in the Garden Centre.

Unfortunately, the weeds just keep on growing this time of year, right along with your chosen plants. Keeping them under control is not only beneficial for keeping things looking good, but also prevents them from competing for water and fertilizer needed for the good plants. Weeds can also provide great habitats for unwanted pests and critters. Some weeds are flowering and producing seeds this time of year as well, and many produce hundreds of seeds that spread quickly.

Continue enjoying all the rewards summer offers, especially in your yard and garden. Trees and shrubs, perennials and some annuals are still available. It is still a good time to plant! Water well, water deeply and if you haven’t by now, feed your plants by applying some fertilizer. Annuals in containers need regular feeding to keep looking great, and a little trim may be necessary now too. Leaving for vacation and can’t take your plants with you? We have some great self-watering products in store, or find a great neighbour who can help you out.

Happy Summer and May the Good Gardening Continue!