Upper South

July, 2011
Regional Report

Plant More Main-Season Vegetables

If you haven't already been succession planting, there's still time to plant more of the main-season vegetable crops that have a short growing period, such as bush beans, summer squash, cucumbers, and okra. Check the seed packets for the time period necessary from planting until harvest. Plant dill at the same time as the cucumbers so that you'll have both to make pickles.

Make a Quick Fountain

Although there is a great variety of fountains available, here is a simple way to have one that specifically fits in with your garden. Choose a container without a drainage hole, then purchase a fountain pump and a fountain head. The packaging on pumps usually provides information about coordinating the size of the pump and the volume of water being lifted. Then just place the pump in the container, attach the fountain head, fill with water, and plug in the pump. If a power outlet isn't available where you want the fountain, there are solar-powered pumps available.

Pick Lots of Bouquets

One of the great rewards of gardening is having fresh flowers for your home and to share with others. Even if you don't have a "cutting garden," per se, there are always lots of options in your garden, if you bring a fresh eye. One of the easiest ways to make a bouquet is to attach a small floral pin holder to the bottom of a small bowl with floral clay, then add a few leaves and short-stemmed flowers. Look at craft fairs for potters who specially make this kind of vase with the pin holder glued to the bottom.

Add Pot Feet to Containers

Hard surfaces, such as stone or brick patios or wood decks, absorb a lot of solar energy, which is radiated back into containers of plants sitting on them. This, in turn, necessitates more frequent watering as the heated containers dry out quickly. Raising containers off the hard surface, using pot feet or a plant caddy, helps to alleviate the heat buildup.

Look for Bargains

Garden centers often have mid-summer sales of annuals as well as trees, shrubs, and perennials, so this is a good time to go shopping. Remember, though, that these plants are frequently potbound. For annuals, consider replanting them into bigger pots. For perennials, trees, and shrubs planted now, be sure to provide extra water in order for them to survive the stress of being moved into the garden.

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