August Gardening To Do’s

MiloWell, we are in the heat of the summer months now. Hopefully your care and attention of your garden in previous months has paid off for the summer!  Proper planting, and attention to water and fertilization will ensure success during the summer months.  If you can stand the heat, here are some things to attend to this month.  If you can’t stand the heat – go to the beach, but remember to get someone to water your plants!

Vegetable and Flower Gardens:

  • Continue to fertilize every 2-6 weeks.  If you are using a granular fertilizer, water it in well so that the plant can receive the nutrients.
  • Some annuals that may have grown tall can be cut back by half and then given water and fertilizer. They will rebloom for you in a few weeks.
  • Pay special attention to hanging baskets and containers especially if you are going out of town. These dry out quickly and will need to be watered once a day and sometimes twice a day (hanging baskets) if the temperatures are really hot.
  • Irises can be divided now.  It is helpful to do this every few years so that the clump doesn’t become overcrowded.  Share with friends or spread around your landscape.  Rhizomes should be planted just barely below the soil surface.  Discard any rhizomes that are diseased or insect infested. Remember to water them in!
  • Have a look around your landscape.  Assess which plants are doing well and which are not and make a note to plant more or less of these next year.
  • If you purchased an annual Bougainvillea vine, it should be flowering its head off.  If it isn’t, it needs full sun, to be slightly pot-bound, and it also likes to dry out between watering.  A fertilizer 20-20-20 that is water soluble should be applied regularly every 3-4 weeks.
  • You should be harvesting from your vegetable garden now.  Do you need to plant more or less vegetables next year?  Figure out if you need help discovering what went wrong and make notes on what worked well.
  • If you have occasional visits from deer, don’t leave produce to be picked the “next day” because you may find the deer have eaten them for you!  Some folks have had success with a fertilizer called Milorganite, which is made by recycling wastewater.  Don’t use this in your vegetable garden, but incorporate it in the beds around the vegetable garden as it can act as a deterrent to deer.

Shrubs and Trees:

  • If you have to plant shrubs in August, make sure you water and mulch them well!  They can survive, but most of their growth will commence in the fall as temperatures reduce.
  • Don’t fertilize in August.  Hold off until the fall.
  • Watch out for whiteflies on Gardenias.  We have organic and synthetic sprays that can be used to control these.
  • Trees will show signs of stress in the heat of the summer.  If the leaves on trees appear to be scorched, this can be a sign of drought stress.  Remember to water your trees, even if they have been in the landscape for many years.


  • Consult your lawn calendar to determine the best times for fertilizing your type of lawn.
  • If you had a large number of Japanese Beetles in the spring and notice that when you dig there are a lot of little white grubs in the soil, then you may need to treat the grubs now so that they don’t grow into beetles for next year.  We are happy to help you chose the appropriate organic or synthetic grub control.
  • You still need to keep water on your lawn, but also be mindful of water restrictions this time of year and abide by them.  It is good to aim to get at least 1 inch of water on your lawn each week. Watering in the cooler morning hours will give the grass time to absorb it before the hot sun evaporates the moisture.

We welcome you to come visit our team at The Family Tree! If you need information, direction or help please contact our office by calling 770-972-2470. Make sure to follow-us on Facebook ,Twitter,  Google+!