Birds and Wildlife
- To attract butterflies, you can plant coral vine, blue plumbago, butterfly weed, lantana, purple coneflower and yarrow. Yes, the critters will eat the plants, but the plants will come right back.
- Vegetables to plant now will include black‑eyed peas, okra, sweet corn, cucumbers, peppers, New Zealand “spinach” and squash.
- You can still plant eggplant and okra for mid-summer vegetables.
- Use Bt or Spinosad to control hornworms, fruit-eating pinworms, and other caterpillars.
- Pull non-producing plants—especially the tomatoes–before diseases and spider mites move in.
- Powdery mildew will probably take the vine plants this month. Pull them out and wait for fall.
- If you’re looking for color for the hot part of the summer, consider periwinkles, esperanza, firebush, zinnias, poinciana, portulaca, purslane, or lantana.
- Plant vincas in full sun.
- Shade plants include coleus, caladiums, firespike and begonias.
- Moss rose and purslane are showy all month long in full sun.
- Keep up the fertilizer on the roses.
Shade Trees and Shrubs
- Newly planted trees need deep watering by hand when the soil dries to one inch.
- Remember to mulch 2-3 inches deep around new trees so that they don’t have to compete with grass. Leave 6” clearance around the trunks.
- Use a weekly spray program to protect your roses from insects and black spot. Keep fruit trees well watered if they’re still producing.
- Prune hedges on an as‑needed basis, but avoid severe pruning.
Fruits and Nuts
- Peaches, apples, plums and blackberries with developing fruit must receive regular moisture.
- Figs are especially sensitive to dry soil.
- Prune out old blackberry canes (the ones that bore fruit this year) to make way for the new canes.
- June’s warm soils make this an ideal time to establish or renovate the home lawn. Bermuda grass for all sun/no shade, St. Augustine for all sun/partial shade and zoysia for all sun/partial shade.
- Irrigate the lawn grass only if it hasn’t rained in the last two weeks.
- Raise the blade on the mower to 3.5 inches or more if you have St. Augustine. Continue to mow the Bermuda at 1-1.5 inch.
Seasonal Gardening Checklist Prepared by Tom Harris, Ph.D., Honorary BCMG