It’s About Thyme
by CHRIS WINSLOW
1. Mulch & water Your vegetable garden, landscape, flowerbeds and trees need some help to make it through this torrid month. Mulch and water deeply.
2. Lawn care Your grass also needs deep, infrequent watering (five day schedule) and keep the cutting height for your lawnmower as high as possible. This will help shade the roots and conserve water.
3. Vegetables This is the month to start your sweet corn, okra, snap beans, cream peas and black-eyed peas from seed. Because the first frost is likely to occur within 100 days, use transplants for your peppers and tomatoes. During the second half of this month, plant your broccoli, cabbage and brussels sprouts.
4. Survive! While it is nice of you to nurse your plants through this brutal month, it is perhaps even more important that you look after yourself. Here are three gardening rules that you must follow! a. Garden early in the morning. b. Wear effective sunscreen and a large brimmed hat. c. Drink gallons of water!
Do you know of a safe way to get rid of snails and slugs in my garden?
One of the oldest techniques is to leave out a few saucers of beer. Slugs and snails love ale so much that they wind up drowning in it! Snail and slug bait with metaldehyde has been used for years but is unsafe for children and pets.
The good news is that there’s a new snail and slug bait on the market that contains iron phosphate. This is safe for kids and pets and simply becomes plant food when all the slugs have been killed.
Any suggestions for heat tolerant summer annuals?
Top of the pops on my list are purslane, moss rose and vinca. The first two are called ‘chismes’ in Spanish , which means gossip… and it’s true that purslane and moss rose do indeed spread like gossip. They also tolerate a lot of heat and drought. Vinca grows a little bit taller and comes in a world of colors. Vinca also has the added attribute of being deer resistant.
If you have a question for Chris, send it via email to email@example.com. Or mail a postcard to It’s About Thyme: 11726 Manchaca Road, Austin, TX 78748 www.itsaboutthyme.com