SUMMER: Month by Month Gardening To-Do List
- first frost date for Collin County is November 15
- last frost date is March 15
- annual rainfall for Frisco, Texas is 39 inches
- number of sunny days per year Frisco is 230
- July high temperature is 96 degrees
- January low temperature is 33 degrees
PLANT: Sun-loving Annuals: zinnias, lantana, periwinkle (vinca), pentas, portulaca, purslane, angelonia, Mexican heather, & blue daze.
Shade-loving Annuals: caladiums, shrimp plant, coleus, & Persian shield.
PRUNE: Prune as necessary to shape. Try to let plants grow naturally and “pick prune” rather than “hedge.” Dead-heading spent flowers helps to bring on a quicker re-bloom.
FERTILIZE: It’s time for a second application of organic lawn fertilizer! We recommend Texas Tee 6-2-4. Use Colorscapes of Color Star on blooming plants.
WATER: Hand-water newly planted plants daily for the first two weeks to make sure they get established. Even drought tolerant plants need this extra care in the beginning until they get settled in. Remember to have someone care after your potted containers while on vacation. (Or we can help you replant them when you return.)
- Check shrubs and Crape Myrtles for scale. We can help you make an informed treatment choice at the nursery. We carry systemic products to treat scale on your entire tree for many months.
- We also carry BT (Bacillus thurengensis) to control webworms and/or bagworms. It’s an organic control so it is safe around people, pets & wildlife. Just don’t apply it to host plants of those butterflies you’ve been admiring.
- Check newly planted trees for borers.
- Mulch to control moisture!
- Mosquitoes: Use Mosquito Dunks & Mosquito Bits in fountains, ponds, gutters and any other standing water. Consider plants that repel mosquitoes: citronella, lavender, rosemary, lemon thyme, lemon balm, and lemon eucalyptus.
- Mulch all your veggies with compost to prevent soil particles getting on foliage and causing disease problems.
- Sprinkle Horticultural Corn Meal over the mulch to hinder soil born diseases.
- Check daily and harvest in the cooler hours of the morning/evening.
- Add some new summer color to freshen up those annual beds. Try zinnia, periwinkle, portulaca, penta or lantana!
- Crape Myrtles! They are in bloom and give you a preview on what they will look like for years to come. Make sure you know what the mature height will be before purchase!
- Container Trees: These can be planted as long as you are prepared to water. For the best chance of success we suggest waiting until cooler temps return in the fall season to plant B&B (Balled and Burlap) trees.
PRUNE: As needed to shape errant growth. Consider abandoning that old-fashioned hedging technique and let your plants grow naturally. Spent blooms and flower stalks can be removed from perennials to tidy up and encourage re-blooming.
FERTILIZE: With your favorite organic fertilizer. If you missed June’s application, you can fertilize everything now. Use Colorscapes, Color Star or Osmocote on color plantings and color pots. Most tropical plants bloom on new growth so fertilize well to keep them growing and blooming. For those with palms, we have a good Palm Food to help them.
WATER: …as needed.
Please continue to be water wise. Follow your city’s watering recommendations. Follow the cycle and soak method. Hand-water those thirsty plants between soakings. Consider installing drip irrigation in beds and even small lawn areas. Haven’t signed up for watering recommendations? Click HERE to sign up for the City of Frisco’s weekly newsletter from their water wise team.
- Mosquitoes: Use Sandalwood Sicks, Mosquito Bits and Mosquito Dunks to keep populations under control.
- Chiggers: They are running rampant this year — use a Dustable Sulfur for control.
- Watch out for Scale on Crape Myrtles, hollies and magnolias. When temps reach over 90 degrees, we suggest a systemic insecticide.
- For the fungus among us we carry Serenade which is an organic fungicide that controls a broad spectrum of fungal problems.
- Wildflowers: Now is the perfect time to put wildflower seed out. Come browse our selection from Botanical Interests seed packets!
- Container Grown Plants: This includes various annuals, perennials, shrubs and trees. Remember to hand-water daily for the first 10-14 days to help get them established. When planting any new plants check moisture every 2-3 days to see how fast the water is being absorbed. With our clay soils, we don’t want to over water. The larger container plants will continue to need hand watering as long as there is no measurable rainfall.
- Replace dead or worn-out looking plants in your containers. Just pull out the old one and pop in a fresh, vibrant one to enhance containers until you do a fall makeover.
PRUNE: A little dead-heading and light pruning will keep your plants in great shape during the heat. Pruning stimulates growth, and we don’t want to encourage this until next month when the weather hopefully starts to cool down. Pick-prune to maintain shape on shrubs and shrub-roses, such as ‘Knockout’ and ‘Drift’ roses.
FERTILIZE: In the heat of the summer, use only slow-release or organic fertilizers. You don’t want to cause extreme growth spurts at this time of year. Use Osmocote, Colorscapes, Color Star or even Superthrive on container plants to keep them happy and blooming in the heat. Use palm food on palms to give them a boost during the warm weather.
- For bagworms & webworms, BT (bacillus thurengensis) will take them out.
- Scale is a major nuisance! When temps are over 90 degrees, we suggest a non-organic systemic insecticide to control scale.
- Serenade is a great organic control for a broad range of fungal problems.
- Continue to be ‘Water Wise.’ With the heat of summer here — be watchful with your water use. Check your landscape often and water if it is dry and needs it. Use a moisture meter and probe around if you’re uncertain. This handy gadget could save you hundreds of dollars.
- Check your colorful container plantings daily. They may or may not need water, but hanging baskets and container gardens will tend to dry out quickly in summer’s brutal heat. Water in the mornings to give your plants the water they’ll need through the day.
- Remember to check your irrigation system once a month during summer. Especially your drip irrigation. Without being able to see the amount of water output, you could be under or over watering your beds. Both symptoms look similar on your plants. The City of Frisco offers FREE sprinkler checks to Frisco Residents. Details can be found on their website.
- Maintain 2″ to 3″ of mulch in planting beds to conserve moisture and moderate soil temperatures. You should have no bare soil in your planting beds.
- Now is a good time to plan for fall plantings. Fall has the best weather (and nursery stock!) so get those ideas on paper now.
- During August heat we all appreciate shade. Make note where to plant that tree to provide shade to your patio or home. Mark the spot so when you plant in the fall, the tree will give you shade next summer. (Remember the sun will have moved by fall, so make note now of the best location.)
- Check on your newly planted trees during summer’s heat. Download our Summer Survival Tips for Trees.