Horticulture Tips for July

Home Grown  by Keith Reed
Please consider the following landscape tips as we begin this very wet start to July:
  • Irrigation is the last thing on most gardeners’ minds right now. (Here’s to hoping your irrigation system is shut down this week). However, diligence is still very important this time of year. Please note that plants (especially annuals) only work as hard as they need to for water uptake. They can get “lazy” after a rainy period and may require irrigation sooner than one would normally expect.
  • For the most part, crapemyrtles made it through last winter undamaged. However, we have seen some cases of severe dieback. If you still have canes that do not have green leaves on them, they should be pruned out as soon as possible to improve the look of the plant going forward.
  • Plan now for your fall vegetable garden as most crops will need to be planted by the end of July. OSU Fact Sheet HLA-6009 offers helpful information.
  • Brown Patch on Tall Fescue generally becomes a major issue this time of year, especially in heavily irrigated lawns. Maintaining tall fescue is very difficult for us in summer, even in the best of circumstances. Proper cultural practices are critical. Fact Sheet HLA-6608 offers tips on growing turfgrass in the shade as well as some alternatives if you tire of repeated tall fescue failures.
  • July is probably the favorite month of the year for bermudagrass. It loves the heat and will respond with tremendous growth assuming irrigation and fertility are adequate. If you are mowing too often for your own tastes, consider reducing or even skipping the next fertilizer application.
  • Now is a good time to divide and replant Iris and Daylilies and select other spring/early summer flowering perennials. The window to prune fall blooming perennials such as mums and salvias begins to close this month. Prune too late and you will remove fall flower buds.
  • If you wish to maximize Pecan production, July is the time to take a tissue sample for soil fertility. There are very specific instructions to collect a proper tissue sample. Contact us for more information.

Keith Reed is the Horticulture Educator in the Payne County Extension OSU Extension office. You can contact him via email at keith.reed@okstate.edu, call 405-747-8320, or stop by the Payne County Extension Office at 315 W. 6th in Stillwater.

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