Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Southwestern Deserts

August, 2001
Regional Report

Start Vegetable Transplants

Sow seeds indoors of cabbage family plants such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts. You'll have a jumpstart with these transplants when the cool-season planting season begins in late September or early October.

Pull Summer Weeds

Annual summer weeds sprout and spread quickly after rain arrives in the form of monsoon thunderstorms. Pull them while they're still small and put them in the compost pile. They are a good source of nitrogen. Never let weeds go to seed. They'll produce zillions of seeds, which you'll be pulling the seedlings of for years.

Care for Containers

Many containers need daily watering during the summer heat. Make sure the water soaks through the soil and root system, and doesn\'t just run down the sides of the pot. If containers have dried out and soil has shrunk away from the sides of the pot, try plunging the entire container into a larger container full of water to soak and rehydrate.

Wash Bird Baths

Change the water daily in bird baths and other water sources for wildlife. Scrub the containers with a brush to prevent the build-up of bacteria and mineral deposits. If you can provide movement to the water, even a slow drip, the water will remain fresh longer.

Maintain Roses

Water roses deeply to a depth of 2 feet deep to moisten the entire root zone. You may need to water several times per week, depending on the type of soil and local temperatures. Make sure mulch is layered about 3 inches thick around the shrub.


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