Transitioning from Spring to Summer
By: Gary Garner Sr.
Last weekend we were knocking at the door of record highs in the low to mid 90’s. As I write this it is supposed to be in the 60’s the next few days and back to the low 80’s for the weekend. That’s Virginia weather. Tough to predict. I would not want to live anywhere that did not have four distinct seasons. I like cold when it’s supposed to be cold and hot when it’s supposed to be hot. Throw a little mild in the mix and I am happy. Without the variety of weather, we would not of the variety of flowers and plants that we all enjoy here in Central Virginia.
With all that said what should be going on in the garden now? The first round of gardens should be planted. Tomatoes, beans, corn, melons, etc. if they are not in try to get them in soon. Good growing weather is here. Take full advantage of it.
Same for flowers. Any flowers that are normally grown outside should be in and growing. Any houseplants you want to spend the summer outside can now be placed on the porch or deck. Make certain them are placed in the proper lighting and where they won’t be damaged by strong wind.
A few dos and don’ts to remember for the summer. The big one is to be cautious on watering. Whether in a pot or in the ground just because a plant is withered or flopped does not mean it needs water. Flopping is a plants way of protecting itself from the heat. Tomatoes, as an example, may be flopped at three o’clock, you take another look at nine that night and all the leaves are standing tall. The plant did not need water.
Most gardens planted in the ground need very little irrigation through the summer. Learn your gardens needs and handle accordingly.
Potted plants in the sun will likely need to be watered daily or every other day. In the shade they may only need to be watered once a week. Remember, temperature, wind cloudy or sunny will all effect water needs for the plant.
Lastly, some plants need more water than others. Becoming a good gardener is a learning experience. You make mistakes and you learn from them. Things turn out well and you try to remember them for next year.
Have fun in the garden.