This month’s flower represents peacefulness

August in the Garden

BY LORI MURRAY

August’s flower is the poppy. It represents peacefulness. August babies also have a connection with the gladiolus and its representations of strength and moral integrity.

The gladiolus could rival the rose for its association with infatuation as well.

POINSETTIAS

Pinch back an inch to encourage bushiness. OR If you have not been tipping your poinsettias, cut them back to half their height August 1st. If you have many poinsettias and they are in a bed, cut them two inches, three inches, and four inches to achieve a banked effect. The same thing could be done with poinsettias in pots after you arrange them as you want them. Continue to water and fertilize. (The last pruning or pinch before flowering should be done in late August.)

PRUNE

Continue tipping chrysanthemums. Cut out sucker growth. Little else.

WATER

Keep plants well watered and mulched where possible to combat the heat.

PLAN

To start a compost heap, work compost into the soil now if you plan to have a fall vegetable garden. Refine the plans you’ve been thinking about all summer – make a list of what materials you’ll need.

PLANT

Cuttings of geraniums; Plant zinnia, dianthus, palm trees and other container grown plants. Divide iris.

POSSIBLE BLOOM

Ageratum, balsam, celosia, canna, daylily, esperanza, shrimp plant, many annuals, perennials, shrubs and vines.

REMEMBER

– When planting trees, shrubs, flowers and herbs use mulch around the base of the plant to conserve moisture, but keep it away from the trunk of the tree

– Water recently planted materials once or twice a week and water deeply to get them established.

– Watch for grub worms in your lawns and gardens. Use a granular insecticide, like Dursban, or Diazion.

– Regularly check for whitefly and aphids, control with soapy water spray. Be sure to spray the undersides of the leaves.