How to Tend Your Plants When Summer Gardening
How to Tend Your Plants in Containers
Flowers to Plant in Mid-Summer
There are plenty of amazing plants that thrive in containers and do really well in the hot summer months. Here are some of the flowers you can plant in the summer:
Petunias are one of the most popular annuals because of their wide selection of available colors and loads of blooms. They come in spreading, trailing, and mounded varieties helping to add dimension to your containers.
Verbena has a natural vigor, shielding its abundant blooms from the hottest part of the summer. These plants also attract butterflies, increasing the chances of pollinating other garden plants in the vicinity.
Cape Daisy blooms throughout the summer and well into the fall, creating low maintenance color for containers. Their cut flowers make beautiful flower arrangements to bring some of the outside beauty inside the home.
Coleus comes in a wide variety of colors and leaf shapes, making it a great accompaniment to any container arrangement you are putting together.
Geraniums are a classic summertime plant and adorn patios and gardens everywhere. Their easy to grow nature makes them great as container plants.
Elephant’s Ears produce stunningly huge leaves, adding variety to containers and helping to create shade and privacy on a patio or deck.
Viola plants are incredibly hardy, tolerant of both heat and cold, making them a great plant for summer container gardening. They are typically grown as annuals but as many gardeners will attest to, they will come back year after year.
Summer Container Gardening
An added benefit to summer container gardening is that it adds pops of color to places like your patio or deck that may look a little lackluster compared to the surrounding flower beds and gardens. Containers add color and texture and can be personalized based upon your favorite colors for the year, or even just made to coordinate with summer parties you are planning.
As the summer season progresses, it may be beneficial to plants to move containers around to keep them out of the sun during the hottest part of the day. Having containers on heavy-duty rolling plant caddies will make moving them much easier, saving yourself time and sparing yourself a backache. Keeping them out of the intense sun will help keep the potting soil from drying out too quickly and the plants from experiencing water stress.
Vegetables to Plant in Late Summer
The following vegetables do really well if planted in late summer, with just enough time to mature before the frost hits.
Plant in late July or August to give the seeds time to produce mature plants in the fall. The cooler, quicker season will produce tender, “baby” carrots that are sweeter. You can actually leave them in the ground through the winter (protected with mulch or straw) and the tops will flower the following year to produce seeds.
Get seeds in the ground about 6-8 weeks before frost is predicted for your area, making sure to plant in a full sun location so plants grow quickly. Then as the temps begin to drop you can enjoy freshly roasted, straight from the garden cauliflower.
The key to planting spinach in late summer is waiting until the soil temperatures have cooled enough. Spinach does not like warm temps at all, and instead of focusing on growing leaves the plants will bolt and go to seed if it is too hot. Mid-August is a great time to plant to see a harvest of spinach before the growing season is done due to frost.
Summer gardening doesn’t have to just mean weeding the vegetable garden and flower beds, or sitting back on the patio admiring what you planted just as the threat of the last frost passed. There are many container plants that can be planted during the summer that thrive during the heat of June, July, and August. There are also numerous plants that can be planted in the ground as the days begin to shorten and the temperatures start to fall, extending your gardening season much longer than what is considered the traditional gardening timeline.