Northern California Coastal & Inland Valleys

July, 2006
Regional Report

Pull Weeds

Get out there and pull those weeds! Greedy weeds rob nutrients and water from ornamental plants. Water the day before you decide to pull weeds. The damp soil will help those roots slip easily from the ground. If you don't get the roots, the weeds will grow right back.

Water and Fertilize Citrus

Citrus trees need a continuous source of moisture to hold their fruit. If the trees dry out between waterings, the fruit may drop. So keep the soil moist and apply citrus-specific fertilizer in low doses to keep those flowers coming.

Irrigate Redwood Trees

Set soaker hoses around redwood trees that aren't under irrigation. Redwoods have shallow roots and will appreciate biweekly watering in the dry summer months. I like those rubber soaker hoses that are made from recycled tires. Make them a permanent part of your redwood grove by covering them with a layer of mulch to protect them from the sun. Redwoods under stress are susceptible to spider mite invasion.

Remove Spent Flowers

Deadhead annual flowering plants to prolong the bloom. A plant's purpose in life is to set seeds. If you remove the faded flowers, the plant will try to make other seeds, meaning more flowers. Cut the faded flowers at the base of the stem, near the foliage, to keep plants looking tidy.

Check Irrigation Systems

Check your drip irrigation systems. If an emitter is blocked, your first indication will be a dead plant. Turn on the system manually and make a thorough inspection of all emitters. If one is not working, take off the fitting and either remove the blockage or replace the part.
In-ground systems should be checked for plugged heads and direction of spray. No sense in watering the driveway.

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