- Watering and pest control are top of the "To Do" list.
- Water after midnight and before 10am to reduce the chance of fungal infection and to conserve moisture.
- Pinch off the top pair of leaves on all chrysanthemum shoots longer than 5" to keep plants bushy and produce more flowers.
- Cut spent berry canes to the ground; tie up and fertilize new canes.
- Cut canna stems to the ground as they finish flowering; new stems will continue to appear.
- Prune fruit bushes again.
- Harvest vegetables promptly to encourage continued production.
- Dig and divide over-crowded irises and bulbs when the foliage dies off.
- Remove spent flowers of daylilies, roses, and other bloomers a they finish flowering.
- Fertilize roses.
- Cut back lavender after flowering to promote a second bloom.
- Trim faded crape myrtle flowers for more fall bloom.
- Pick up dropped fruit to prevent brown rot. Clean around trees.
- Pick caterpillars off vegetables and flowers. Spray with Bt if needed.
- Spray off aphids with water or use insecticidal soap.
- Pull weeds when they first appear.
What to Plant in July
Flowers: Direct seed annuals, such as alyssum, celosia, sunflower, zinnias, and marigolds.
Vegetables: At higher, cooler elevations, direct seed summer squash, bush beans, summer savory, and kohlrabi.
If fruit isn't setting on your melons and squash, use a soft brush to hand-pollinate the flowers and increase production. Use the brush to gather pollen from male flowers, then brush it onto the female flower. (Female flowers have a tiny embryo friut at the base of their petals.)
Bees on sunflowers
Bees on sunflowers at the 2008 California State Fair (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)