Western Mountains and High Plains

July, 2012
Regional Report

Dig and Divide Irises

Now is the time to lift and divide bearded irises that are becoming overcrowded. Rhizomes grow and branch out many times over the years, developing into clumps of choked rhizomes. If left undivided, the foliage prevents sunlight from reaching the roots. This reduces flowering and weakens the plants.

Increase Watering as Temperatures Rise

Evaporation is at its highest in hot weather and watering needs increase. The best time to water is early morning or late evening, between 9 p.m. and 9 a.m. Watering at these times reduces evaporation and is better for the health of plants.

Pick Herbs

Harvest herbs with a sharp scissors in early morning. The more you pick herbs, the more new growth is promoted. Pinch off the flowers off to encourage more vigorous leafy growth.

Be Patient with Tomatoes

As temperatures stay above 90 degrees F, tomatoes resist setting fruit. Be patient and eventually they will get back on track as temperatures begin to cool down to the 80s.

Fertilize Vegetables

Even in the heat of summer, it is important to feed your vegetable garden. Side-dress long season crops with an organic 5-10-5 or other balanced fertilizer. Water in thoroughly after application.

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