I am sure we have all noticed that we have entered the dry days of summer. August and September typically are the driest months of the year in Spokane. Here are a few tips to be aware of as we enjoy our late summer gardens…
- Watering deeply and early in the morning (and not necessarily every day!) is the best use of water and most effective for your garden. Watering during the day or early evening results in up to 50% of your Irrigation water evaporating into the air. Please be water-wise!
- Because of the dry air and heat this time of year, if you have considered mulching your trees and shrubs, now is the optimal time.
- Labor Day is also a good time to fertilize your flowers for the last time this season. Don’t forget to deadhead to maintain the beauty of your summer colors into fall.
- I know we all are ready to stop worrying about those pesky weeds as summer winds down. BUT, the end of summer is the most important time to weed so that we won’t be surprised by a banner crop of them in the spring. Please be on the lookout for spurge, a noxious weed that I’ve seen in many of our yards. If you see it in your lawn or beds, please spray it and/or dig it out.
- If you are interested in planting trees or shrubs, late summer is the prime time to do so. It also allows you to take advantage of all those end-of-year sales at the greenhouses.
I have been asked why most of our lawns look unevenly mowed right after mowing day, if not the same day. This is because they have been infested with creeping bentgrass. That also explains the different colors of green in our lawns. Creeping bentgrass will eventually choke out the other varieties of preferred grasses and is spread via lawnmower blades, birds, even shoes that have been on golf courses or other contaminated lawns. Unfortunately, it is expensive to eradicate.
PARKWOOD SOUTH PANDEMIC SAFETY THOUGHTS
We are a somewhat isolated residential community of 46 homes. Covid-19 infection has recently struck some of our residents, prompting several of us present and past health care providers to share our concerns and ideas for benefit of all Parkwood South residents. The reality is that most of our residents are elderly, and elderly folks are generally the most ill among all who become infected. Our purpose in sharing these thoughts is not to place blame or instill fear. It seems to us imperative that all of us protect others living here, as well as ourselves, in so far as is possible.
Anyone who is tested for covid-19 active infection, and who is awaiting results of such testing, should self-isolate until test results are known. If negative, self-isolation can end unless your health care provider directs otherwise. If you test positive, it is incumbent on you to inform those exposed to your infection who can then make their own choice of what to do about the exposure…the idea being that knowledge is power whereas not knowing leaves the exposed person at potential risk unknown to them (as well as others to whom that exposed person is in turn exposed).
We are aware that covid-19 test results are sometimes neither negative nor positive for virus but rather stated as indeterminate or some such term. That is not the same as negative, and an indeterminate result should never be viewed simply as reassuring. Medicine is an imperfect science even in year 2020. Similarly, a negative test does not mean you are immune or can’t catch the bug the next day, week, month or year. Vigilance…not fear…should rule individual decisions about protecting self and others from catching covid-19 infection.
The above comments are in no way intended to replace guidance of your personal physician(s) but are merely to alert all to our collective responsibility for protecting one another during this pandemic.
What a beautiful spring we are having as a result of all the cool, wet weather we have had. Our yards are green, and the flowering trees, shrubs, and spring bulbs have been lovely: I’m grateful to all you neighbors who have these plantings in your yards!
With our current weather, it is not too late to still divide and move any perennials in your yards. Once your spring-flowering shrubs and trees are done blooming, they can be pruned, and the shrubs should be dead-headed to stimulate next year’s flower production and improve their summer appearance. Again, do not prune them in the fall.
Please be aware that Haase is not contracted to fertilize our planting beds, treat our trees, shrubs, perennials, and flowers for pests or diseases. Memorial Day and the beginning of June are the perfect time to do both.
If you have spring blooming flowers in your yard (crocuses, tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, etc.) and they have finished blooming, they can be dead-headed, but do not cut away their leaves until the leaves are brown. The leaves, while still green, are needed to nourish the bulbs and roots for next year.
Please remember to not over- or under-irrigate your landscaping. Irrigation does take monitoring all spring and summer. We all need to be conscious of the water we use. We never receive a bill, but we are paying for it through our monthly dues.