Tip of the Week
Tips for Gardening in the Summer Heat
Avoid Spray Damage to your Plants
Pests and disease are an unavoidable part of summer in the garden and many gardeners will be out in the vegetable and flower garden with their sprayers and dusters trying to combat the worst of the problems by applying insecticides and fungicides.
When you are spraying in the heat and humidity of the summer, there are some important tips to keep in mind in order to avoid injury to your plants:
- Water the day before you plan to spray.
Spray injury is much more likely when plants are stressed due to lack of water. When your plants are well watered, the foliage is less likely to suffer from chemical burn.
- Spray during the cooler part of the day.
Spray injury can occur if you spray in the bright sun during the heat of the day because the combination of the heat and the chemicals can burn the foliage.
- Most chemicals should not be sprayed when the temperature is above 85°F or 90°F.
- During the summer, the best time to spray is early morning or in the evening.
- Always read and follow label directions when spraying any pesticide!
Mow Your Grass High!
Nothing is worse for your lawn during the hot, dry summer than to cut it short! The Viettes suggest setting your mower to cut the grass no lower than 3".
- Grass mowed high develops extensive root systems to better tolerate drought conditions.
- Taller grass will shade out and compete better with broadleaf lawn weeds, too.
Be careful when you garden in the heat and remember to take frequent breaks in the shade and drink plenty of water!