Magazine article Sunset

What to Do in Your Garden July

Magazine article Sunset

What to Do in Your Garden July

Article excerpt


Bearded iris Set out rhizomes of bearded iris in cooler summer areas now; in warmer areas, wait until the temperatures have cooled at summer's end to plant. Grow iris in full sun (light afternoon shade in hottest climates) and fast-draining soil. Set rhizomes 1 to 2 feet apart and plant deep enough so the top is barely covered with soil. Two Northern California mail-order sources are Napa Country Iris Garden in Napa ( or 707/255-7880) and Nola's Iris Garden in San Jose ( or 408/929-6307).


Fall vegetables Sunset climate zones 1 and 2: For fall harvest (except in highest altitudes), plant beets, broccoli, bush beans, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, green onions, peas, spinach, and turnips. Below 5,000 feet, plant winter squash between some of the spinach; the spinach will be ready to harvest before the squash takes over.

Reblooming bigleaf hydrangeas Zones 7-9, 14-17: Unlike most bigleaf hydrangeas, which produce flower buds only on old wood formed during the previous season, bigleaf hydrangeas classified as "reblooming" produce flowers on both old and new wood. Widely available reblooming varieties to look for this month include 'Endless Summer', with flowers that are pink in alkaline soil and blue in acid soil, and new 'Endless Summer Blushing Bride', with brilliant white blooms that develop a hint of pink when mature.


Cut back cane berries After harvesting cane berries such as blackberries, boysen-berries, and raspberries, cut spent canes back to the ground and tie new ones to supports as they develop.

Deadhead blooming plants Remove spent flowers from annuals and perennials such as daisies, daylilies, geraniums, marigolds, and penstemon to promote new blooms. Make sure to deadhead the entire flower so you remove the part where the seed forms. Marguerites and low-growing verbenas that produce masses of blooms can be time consuming to deadhead; shear off flowers with clippers instead. …

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