This is the time of year when your garden is bursting with beautiful blooms and you can enjoy the benefits of your hard work. Here are some July gardening tips and things to work on in your Pacific Northwest garden.
The temperature is finally starting to warm up here in the Pacific Northwest in the month of July.
There is still plenty of work that needs to be taken care of this month, but the great news is that the days are longer so we can still enjoy some relaxation after working in the garden.
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I’m a self-taught hobby gardener, not a Master Gardener. Everything I share with you on my blog is my personal opinion and things that have worked for me personally.
July Gardening To-Dos
Here are some July gardening tips and things to do in the garden this month in the Pacific Northwest.
Keep Your Garden Hydrated
July is one of the driest months of the year so it’s important to keep your garden watered.
- Water deep so it reaches the roots of the plant.
- Morning watering is best so the water doesn’t evaporate in the heat of the day.
- If you have to water in the evening, try to water directly into the roots and keep from getting any foliage wet to avoid disease or fungus.
Flower containers, window boxes, and hanging baskets tend to dry out quickly in the summer months. Be sure to water them daily to keep your flowers hydrated, and twice a month during those hotter and windy days.
Add Mulch to the Garden
Apply more mulch to garden shrubs and perennials to…
- help to maintain weed control
- retains moisture by reducing the amount of water that evaporates from the soil
- prevents soil erosion
- maintains soil nutrients
Give Your Roses Some Extra Love
DEADHEAD YOUR SPENT BLOOMS
Did you know that once a spent rose forms a rose hip the plant’s energy starts going towards trying to ripen the rose hip? Deadhead your roses regularly with clean pruners to keep your plants producing fresh rose blooms.
FERTILIZE YOUR ROSE PLANTS
Apply a monthly application of rose fertilizer to keep your roses beautiful and productive.
Freshen Up Garden Annuals
Deadhead spent annuals regularly to keep them blooming all summer.
Slugs, hot temperatures, overwatering, and dehydration are just a few reasons your annual flowering plants may die off.
If one of your annuals is struggling or dies off, replace it with a fresh plant.
Prune, Cut Back, and Harvest
CUT BACK SPRING-FLOWERING BULB FOLIAGE
Once your spring bulb foliage has died off and turned brown, it’s time to remove it. I pulled most of mine in June but am starting to pull the remaining dried-up daffodil foliage.
CLICK HERE to read more about why it’s important to leave your foliage in the ground for as long as possible.
REMOVE SUCKERS FROM FRUIT TREES
As soon as you spot any suckers on fruit trees, remove them by pulling the smaller ones or clip them off with garden pruners or gardening shears.
HARVEST FRUITS, VEGETABLES, AND FLOWERS
Picking fruits, vegetables, and flowers benefit your garden by…
- helping to prevent disease
- promotes new growth
- keeps your garden looking neat and tidy
Pick fresh vegetables as they ripen. Overly ripe vegetables quickly lose their flavor and texture.
CUT BACK SPENT DELPHINIUMS AND PHLOX
Fertilize and cut back any spent delphinium and phlox flowers to encourage a second bloom cycle.
PRUNE SUMMER-BLOOMING SHRUBS
Summer blooming shrubs should be pruned to shape after they are finished flowering. Remove any dead or diseased branches.
Weed and Pest Control
KEEP WEEDS UNDER CONTROL
Did you know that weeds can steal water and nutrients from other plants in your garden?
As I mentioned above, adding a layer of mulch helps to keep the weeds under control in your garden.
It can be much easier to pull weeds if they are wet, after a rain storm, or by watering them deeply before the task.
If you can’t get to weeding right away, cut off the heads of the weeds to keep them from going to seed.
Slugs thrive in moist areas of the garden. Some places I look for these pests are under rocks and flower containers, in overgrown vegetation, and even under large leaves. They generally hide out during the day but come out full force in the dark evening hours.
Continue applying slug bait to areas in the garden where slug’s favorite flowers are such as dahlias, zinnias, and marigolds. I use Sluggo which is safe for pets and wildlife.
Other slug-killing methods include a small container of beer, an evening of slug hunting with a flashlight, and your favorite slug-killing tool,
Use the water spray from a hose or insecticidal soap spray to keep aphids, spider mites, and other sap-sucking pests from your favorite flowers.
SPRINKLER AND DRIP SYSTEMS
If you have a sprinkler or drip irrigation system, make sure you regularly check to make sure it is working properly and adjust if there are plants that aren’t being watered in the garden.
SUPPORT TALL GARDEN FLOWERS
If you haven’t already, support any tall flowers such as dahlias, sweet peas, and snapdragons to protect them from damage due to heavy rain and winds.
CLICK HERE to read more about the different methods of supporting your flowers.
DIG UP AND DIVIDE SPRING BULBS
Crowded spring-blooming bulbs and tubers should be dug up, divided, and transplanted in July.
DIVIDE SINGLE-BLOOMING BEARDED IRISES
After your single-blooming bearded irises have finished blooming, July is a great time to dig them out of the ground and divide them. These flowers like to produce flowers from the newest growth and will eventually stop flowering as heavily if they are not divided.
Cut off the spent flower stalk.
Once the foliage tips of the bearded iris turn brown, stop watering the plant. Once they wither, pull the rhizomes out of the ground and split them.
Some helpful tips:
- Older, dried rhizomes should be cut away to help prevent rot.
- After dividing, let the rhizomes dry in the shade for a few days to callus the cur surfaces.
- Trim the foliage at an angle before replanting to decrease water loss during the transplanting process.
Plant and Sow in July
PLANT WARM WEATHER-LOVING VEGETABLES AND HERBS
Continue succession planting carrots, herbs (chives, basil, and parsley), and slow-to-bolt salad greens such as Red Cross and Jericho to continue harvesting through the summer.
Use shade cloth to keep carrots, radishes, and other quick-growing vegetables cooler in the July heat.
CLICK HERE for more tips on how to protect your garden from excessive heat.
SOW SEEDS FOR COOL-SEASON CROPS
Directly sow cool-season crop seeds in the garden by mid-July.
Order Spring Bulbs to Plant in the Fall
It’s definitely not too early to order your spring bulbs in July. Many of the favorite varieties are sold out quickly and the bulbs will be delivered at the time they should be planted in your hardiness zone.
I hope this gives you an idea of some gardening to-dos that need to be done here in the Pacific Northwest for the month of July.
Please leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you.
Until next time,
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These were all such helpful tips, Kim, thank you! We’ve been having a hard time with slugs on our hydrangeas. It’s crazy hot here so I guess they’re digging down in our container gardens. We also have some really weird black spots on the leaves too so I really appreciate all the different ways you educate us on healthy plants. I need it! Big hugs, CoCo
Great tips Kim! I just cut all of my spring flowering bulbs back about a week or so ago! They were looking like a hot mess. Not anymore! Gardens look gorg! xo
Doesn’t it feel good when the last spring bulb foliage is cut back and your garden looks clean again? Sadly, I am still waiting on some of them to cut back.