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Help for the Heat: Garden Rescues

If your yard looks dry, wilted and in need of a little love – here are some tips
to beat the heat, and help your garden make it to Fall!

Carlie Gillespie with Cactus & Tropicals breaks it down.

It is July and it’s tough for plants to survive in this heat. A lot of our gardens
are looking dry and wilted, and need a lot of love. Here are some tips to beat
the heat, and help your garden make it through until fall.

First, our gardens are dry right now. So, be regular about watering.
Remember that sometimes our irrigation systems just aren’t doing the job,
especially if your plants aren’t fully established. You may need to go outside
and do some supplemental watering. The best time to check your plants is
when the sun goes down, or early in the morning when it is cool. In this kind
of heat a lot of our plants will always get droopy mid-day, but if they are still
drooping in the morning it means they are getting very thirsty. Use a soil
probe to check the moisture of your gardens or containers. Give plants a
good drink of water if the soil seems dry with a hose or a watering can. And
remember it is better to thoroughly saturate your plants less often, than to
give them little drinks of water all the time.

Second, consider mulching. The surface of our garden soil has been drying
out really quickly in the heat and wind this summer. Mulching is an easy way
to increase water retention by covering your bare soil with organic matter. A
lot of vegetable gardeners use dried leaves or straw, or if you have a lawn
you can put your grass clipping around your ornamental plants for an
inexpensive mulch. You can also use compost, which not only protects your
soil from losing moisture it also amends your soil and adds much needed
nutrients. This will keep your flowers blooming and your plants happy!

Third, proper maintenance is key. At this point in the summer a lot of our
blooming plants have bloomed, and the flowers have faded. Try cutting those
bloom-heads back. It will make more energy available to the rest of the plant
so it remains healthier looking, and in some cases will encourage a second
bloom cycle. It’s important to remember to keep all your plants clean of dead
blooms, and to remove dead or dry leaves and stems off any of your plants.
This encourages new growth, and gives your plant a fresh look.

Forth, when plants are stressed by the heat or from being to dry, they are
more prone to getting attacked by insects. So, get out in your garden and
look at your plants. Be sure to look on the underside of leaves, at stems and
growth tips. A lot of plants can get spider mite and aphids this time of year.
Try using an organic pesticide like Safer’s Insecticidal soap, it’s safe for your
garden plants and you, and can be incredibly effective.

Lastly, try planting native and water-wise plants. Part of the reason our
gardens start to look sad this time of year, is because many of the plants in
our gardens aren’t used to this harsh climate. When planting your perennials
try some plants that are more suitable for this climate. And, remember it’s
not only cacti and succulents that are drought tolerant, there are plenty of
really beautiful plants that are easy to grow, don’t need a lot of water and will
bloom all summer even in the heat. Some beautiful blooming water-wise
plants to try are: Lavender, Agastache, Yarrow, Echinacea, Santolina,
Coreopsis and Russian sage.

Cactus & Tropicals has the best selection of fresh, healthy and unique house
plants and flowers, elegant garden accessories and gifts. In spring and
summer visit us for low maintenance and water wise xeric plants, beautiful
native, trees, shrubs and perennials, steppable ground covers and
spectacular container gardens, Veggies, herbs and flowers of all types and
super cool, winter hardy cactus and succulents fill our exterior nursery with
everything you need to create a beautiful space inside and out. Cactus &
Tropicals also provides interior, guaranteed plant maintenance for over 800
locations in and around the Salt Lake Valley and is an exquisite location for
your wedding reception or other special event. Open year round, 7 days a
week in Salt Lake City and Draper Join our Gifts From the Garden Club and
receive 20% off of an item of your choice and a variety of discounts and same
as cash coupons throughout the year. Visit our website at:

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