Marianne Binetti

Marianne Binetti


Late summer color a harvest for eyes

The close of August is the ideal time to harvest squash, tomatoes and beans, cut back perennials such as daisies and daylilies that have past their prime and continue to water and fertilize potted plants and annuals in the garden.

Marianne Binetti

Food, water, pruning keep flowers going into fall

Now is time to give your potted plants extra attention if you want to enjoy beautiful blooms into the fall season. By the middle of August, the roots of geraniums, petunias and verbena have grown enough to fill up containers of potting soil, so your potted plants will need more water and another dose of fertilizer to keep them in blooming good shape. Continue to deadhead or remove the faded blossoms to encourage more blooms.

Marianne Binetti

Marianne Binetti: Wait for rain, then go after slugs

The month of August is the time for an important garden chore — bait for slugs. This is the month when the slugs and snails are mating under the cover of darkness. Use a pet-safe slug bait such as Worry Free or Sluggo around the dark and shaded trysting spots such as groundcovers, rockeries and around uncut lawns.

Marianne Binetti

Pick lettuce, berries early in morning for peak freshness

The third week of July is time to harvest early crops such as lettuce, raspberries, blueberries and everbearing strawberries as well as fresh herbs. To enjoy the best flavor from your berries and the most crispness from your leafy crops, harvest in the morning. Early in the day, when flowers are full of moisture, is also the best time to gather roses, sweet peas and other cut flowers to enjoy indoors.

Marianne Binetti

It’s time to water, fertilize, pinch back flowers; you can also still plant

July is the month to put your mettle to the petal and commit to caring for your blooming baskets and container gardens. You must water more often when the weather warms up and roots fill the soil and demand more to eat and drink. Water until you see drainage seeping from the hole at the bottom of the pot. Fertilize at least once every two weeks to keep petunia and fuchsia baskets in full bloom. July is also a good time to pinch back petunias by about one third for bushier plants. Use your pruning crumbs as cut flowers: Petunias can be surprisingly fragrant and long lasting in a vase.

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