It happens every year. I start out with a great burst of energy in the spring and carry on pretty good until the hot weather of our summer months. I garden in a semi arid area where the summers are long and sizzling hot and dry. Everyone loves to come here to soak up our sun and play in the lakes. Our population almost doubles over the summer and license plates show folks have come from all over. For the gardener however all this beach weather is not so ideal for gardening in the heat is difficult. The plants get tired and stressed and chores become harder to complete.
Extra watering is required and we all know the fun of hauling around heavy hoses and sprinklers that never seem to work. The weeds are not intimidated by the heat and seem to thrive. Perennials need trimming back after flowering and annuals require fertilizing on a regular basis to keep them performing well. Berries need picking and vegetables need attention and harvesting as well. Sometimes it can feel a little overwhelming.
There was a time when I was determined to keep up with it all, but not anymore. I guess you might say I learned the hard way. Bottom line is you probably can’t really keep up with it all and in the end it doesn’t matter anyways. As long as you maintain a semblance of order and keep the water flowing your garden will see itself through the tough days of summer just fine. With the cooler temperatures returning in the fall you will also be regenerated and within a week things will get caught up again and carry on.
If you have a garden pond, swish your feet in it to cool off!
If you have planted species which are suitable to your area, they will adapt very well by themselves. You really only get into trouble when you deviate from this plan and plant species which will be miserable during your hot summer and probably never recover. Right plant, right place. Not unlike real estate, location, location, location.
Lavender can take what ever the sun has to give, and look great!
TIPS for KEEPING YOUR COOL
- To keep cool in hot weather try to garden early in the morning before the heat begins if you can, other wise leave it to the evening when it starts to cool off. Trying to garden in the mid day heat is not particularly beneficial to the gardener.
- Remind yourself of your summer safety tips. Wear light clothing and top it off with a good sun hat and sun glasses.
- My favorite gardening sun hats.
- Lots of sunscreen on exposed skin, and even more cool refreshing beverages at your finger tips. I don’t think you can drink too much, water is perfect. You do not want to become dehydrated.
- Take lots of breaks in the shade and snack on healthy treats to keep up your energy. Listen to your body and if it is saying enough, pay attention and close shop for the day.
- Sit back and have a good long look at your garden and think about what changes you might want to make. Not a very good time for planting anything new unless you absolutely will not let it get dry, probably better to wait until the fall.
- I should follow the lead of my Grandbabies!
Practicing the above will help you to stay cool in hot weather. The heat wave won’t last forever and when it breaks you’ll be ready for the next garden round of the year. Harvesting, replanting, conserving and general all around clean up.
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