Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Lower South

June, 2009
Regional Report

Avoid Broadleaf Weed Killers in St. Augustine Turf

Broadleaf weed killer products can weaken and damage St. Augustine and some other turfgrasses when used in hot weather. The best weed control is a dense, healthy turfgrass. Hand pulling or carefully spot treating weeds with a wiper applicator are the best options for controlling weeds in summer.

Don't Be A "Skeeter Breeder"

Mosquitoes can breed in standing water that collects in catch basins under containers, in sagging rain gutters, and in other outdoor locations where water collects and stands for days. Check these and other such locations weekly and empty any standing water you find.

Plant Heat-Tolerant Veggies

There are several vegetables that actually love summer heat. Now is a great time to plant heat-loving veggies like sweet potatoes, okra, amaranth greens, and Malabar spinach. If you provide them with plenty of water they can beat the heat of our sizzling southern summers.

Shear Perennial Flowers

Some types of flowers tend to bloom themselves out by about this point in the season, including Salvia greggii and 'Indigo Spires' salvia, trailing petunias, pink skullcap, and lantana. Cut these plants back by one third and then fertilize hem and water it in well to bring on a new flush of growth and blooms.

Aphid Alert

Watch for aphids on young transplants and new growth. An insecticidal soap or pyrethrin spray will generally shut them down for a while. Check the plants in four or five days to see if another treatment is needed. They have many natural enemies that generally keep them in check, making regular treatments unnecessary.


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