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Garden Journal for July

July 9, 2010

Early July

Water

Deep, thorough watering is important for the health of your plants.  Most plants need at least an inch of water every week in order to thrive.  Deep watering ensures deep root growth, which allows plants to survive in times of drought and to anchor themselves into the ground.  Watering is especially important for container gardens which tend to dry out quicker than garden beds. 

Mulch

Mulching will aid moisture retention and help to reduce weeds.

Weed

Pull weeds by the roots and keep them pulled, so that they do not have an opportunity to flower and produce seeds. 

Harvest

After beets are harvested, bare areas can be planted with a succession crop.

Many plants are ready to be harvested; monitor the garden daily.  Peas, beans, cucumbers, and lettuce should be harvested continuously so that they are harvested in their prime, when they are most tender and delicious.  Swiss chard, kale and leaf lettuce can produce for a long period of time.  Harvest large outer leaves and allow the plant to continue to produce.  Frequent harvest may help to keep plants from bolting.  Herbs can be harvested frequently.  Beets, onion and kohlrabi can be harvested, removing the entire plant.  These bare areas can be planted with succession crops. 

Plant

Succession crops of carrots, beets, and Swiss chard can be planted at this time.  Seedlings of the Cabbage Family can also be planted.        

Monitor

Walk through your garden frequently in the early morning or in the evening, looking for pests or signs of disease.  Japanese beetles move more slowly in the morning and are easier to remove.  Snails and slugs will be in the garden in the evening or morning before it warms up.  Check under leaves for hidden cabbage worms, squash bug eggs and other hungry pests.  All pests and pest eggs should be destroyed!  Squish by hand or place in soapy water.  This is also the time to monitor for signs of tomato late blight.        

Mid to late July

Maintenance

Continue to water, mulch, weed, and monitor your garden as needed.

Harvest

Carrots, corn, eggplant, summer squash and tomatoes should be ready for harvest now or very soon.  Check your squash frequently in order to harvest tender fruit; large squash tends to be more fibrous and less tasty.

Plant

Cool season crops of radish, spinach, lettuce, and peas can all be seeded into the garden for a fall crop.  Plant a succession of beans and corn.

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