Northern California Coastal & Inland Valleys
Wait to Divide Perennials
Wait until perennials have stopped blooming before dividing. All of the plants energy is going into producing blooms and may not be able to produce new roots at the same time. Fall is right around the corner and is the ideal time to divide perennial plants.
Cover Soaker Hoses
Protect rubber or plastic soaker hoses from deterioration by the sun by covering them with a layer of mulch. The mulch will also prevent the water from evaporating, providing that much more moisture to the roots.
Care for Azaleas
Do not over fertilize azaleas. Aphids, whiteflies, and scale insects are attracted to tender new growth. Instead of using a fast acting chemical fertilizer, apply liquid fish or a layer of fresh compost to help azaleas set buds now for spring bloom.
Roses that are not under irrigation benefit from infrequent, deep watering. Roses are deep rooted and can withstand a certain amount of drought. Avoid light "sprinkling" and keep foliage dry to prevent fungal diseases such as black spot and powdery mildew.
Use Compost Tea to Prevents Pest Problems
Make a sun tea from compost and apply to foliage with a portable sprayer. The compost tea introduces beneficial bacteria that will compete with disease organisms. Remove diseased leaves as soon as you notice them and keep the soil clean under the plants.