Ask an Expert – How Does Your Garden Grow? Tips for July

JayDee Gunnell
07/01/2021

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July garden

It can be a challenge to keep gardens growing well as summer heats up, so Utah State University Extension provides a Gardener’s Almanac to help. The almanac  provides a checklist of tasks with tips, links and further information.

July Checklist

·         Start enjoying the tomato harvest.

·         Side dress (fertilize) potatoes in the garden with nitrogen in early July.

·         Harvest summer squash and zucchini when they are still small and tender.

·         Deep water established trees and shrubs about once per month during the heat of summer.

·         Deadhead (cut off) spent blossoms of perennial and annual flowers.

·         Divide crowded iris or daylilies once they have finished blooming.

·         Remove water sprouts (vertical shoots in the canopy) of fruit trees to discourage regrowth and reduce shading.

·         Renovate perennial strawberry beds by tearing out old crowns (mother plants) and applying fertilizer to stimulate new runners.

Pests and Problems

·         If tomatoes are not producing, it could be due to hot weather (95°F and above), which causes flower abortion.

·         Blossom end rot  (black sunken areas on the end of tomatoes) is common and is caused by uneven watering.

·         Check under leaves of pumpkins, melons and squash plants for squash bugs.

·         Treat corn for corn earworm.

·         Spider mites prefer dry, hot weather and affect many plants. Treat for spider mites by using “softer” solutions such as spraying them with a hard stream of water or by using an insecticidal soap. Spider mites can be easily identified. Shake leaves over a white piece of paper, and if the small specs move, you have mites.

·         Control codling moth in apples and pears to reduce wormy fruit. For specific timing, see our Utah Pests Advisories.

·         Historically, control of the greater peach tree borer in peaches, nectarines and apricots occurs the first of July. However, for specific timing, see our Utah Pests Advisories.

·         Click here for instructions on how to submit a sample to the Utah Plant Pest Diagnostic Lab.

·         Watch for symptoms of turfgrass diseases.

·         Monitor for damaging turfgrass insects.

·         For drought information, click here. For information from the Center for Water-Efficient Landscaping, click here.

To see a video of the July Gardener’s Almanac tips, click here. To learn more gardening tips and tricks, click here.

By: JayDee Gunnell, Utah State University Extension horticulturist, Jaydee.gunnell@usu.edu