GUEST BLOG: Hot Weather Gardening 101

To my regular readers: thanks for Andrew Nessl for writing the guest post below about the best way to garden in hot weather.

-Aimee

Hot Weather Gardening 101 by Andrew Nessl

In this day and age, learning how to garden in our increasingly hot climate is very important to know.

It sometimes can seem so unbearable that you want to throw in the towel and forget it. Well with simple tips and a slight change to your daily routine, you can have a prize winning garden for entertainment, solitude, and so much more.

Getting started, the most important element in your whole garden is your soil. The best way to bring life is to keep it damp enough for plants and keep it rich in nutrients with organic mulching. This can be achieved by using anything from:

-used morning coffee grounds

-tea bag without the string or staple

-vegetable skins

-flower petals from arrangements

-grass clippings (while grass is not giving seed)

-pine needles

-old jack o’lanterns

-shredded paper (it must be a recycled paper bag)

This will protect your soil from harmful UV rays.

Protecting yourself from the sun may seem silly, like wearing a helmet on a quick bike ride, however it is important. Try a few ways to protect yourself by:

-Wearing lighter colors

-Wearing sunscreen

-Taking short, restful breaks

-Keeping hydrated with healthy fluids

-Never overexert yourself

Taking these steps will make gardening seem less laborious and much more enjoyable.

Always make sure there are no foreign plants popping up (volunteers). These plants will take over your garden and suck up all the moisture, which is meant for the plants you have invested time into. Some may hide themselves as similar plants that you have while others may seems so beautiful, you may ask yourself how they could be bad.

Invasive Plants to watch out for:

-Morning Glory

-Weeping Ficus

-Dandelion

Depending on your location, several other invasive plants are very common and mask as very beautiful ornamental plants and then they spread all over your garden. This is easy to stop by enclosing these plants in container gardens.

Selecting and Spacing

Sometimes when we rush our gardening we like to “clump”, which is essentially like putting a bunch of people into an elevator and asking them to live like that. However, some types of plants like to be in a clumped environment.

For this reason, if you are unsure of a plant’s growth pattern it’s best to leave it in a pot and monitor it. These potted plants should be lifted every so often. When they are not, they tend to root straight from the pot to the soil, making the plant very difficult to move or remove.

Cooling Plants

Having plants in your garden that give you shade and clean oxygen

– Bamboo Palm (kept potted- provides beautiful foliage)

– Moth Orchid (Kept mainly indoors)

-English Ivy (Kept mainly indoor and these plants thrive on indoor/outdoor pollution)

Fertilizer

If you see your plants looking unhealthy, don’t immediately jump to putting chemicals on them.

First see if your plant is getting enough natural elements it requires for a healthy appearance.

– enough sunlight

– space (if it is a plant that does not like to be crowded)

– water – make sure it is neither over or under watered

If plant seems to still be struggling you can use organic fertilizers.

– eggs shells (buried away from curious animal

– extra organic mulch (lightly mixed with an animal excrement fertilizer

 Watch Your Step

-Placing stepping stones in your garden on areas that seem to have no hope. Doing this gives your soil a “face lift”. After a year or so of having these stones, lift it up and you have a beautiful new area to garden in.

Dream Garden

-A great way to get inspiration for your garden is by looking at gardens nearby your home.

This is a great way to see how big plants get or if they are invasive or attracts pests.

Thank you and Happy Gardening

-Andrew Nessl

Thanks Andrew for the Guest Blog post! If you would like to Guest Blog, contact me at aimee_engebretson@yahoo.com 

 

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