Ciscoe’s Tips of the Week:
– Crocosmia are one of the best perennials when it comes to attracting hummingbirds. Prevent them from getting spider mites by blasting the foliage with water whenever you’re out watering. Mites can be controlled by using a natural outdoor insect killer that contains canola oil.
– Practice ‘Maud O’Hara’s’ (my grandma) half-hour rule in the veggie garden. It states that if you don’t weed for a half-hour in the vegetable garden every day, you have to spend all day Saturday weeding instead of playing Little League baseball. Feel free to substitute something relevant to you in place of the baseball, but the message is: Weed a bit every day, and save yourself a long day of work getting things under control if you don’t.
– Harvest broccoli when the florets size up, but before the flower buds open. Cut off the central flower head at a 45-degree angle to encourage side shoots to form for continuous harvesting throughout July, into August.
This latest warm spell might mean bitter lettuce. Once it goes to seed, it’s time to start over. But if your lettuce still looks and tastes good, just keep snipping off the biggest leaves for your salad. It should continue to crank out replacements.
Ciscoe’s Tips of the Month for July
– Deadhead spent flowers and add organic rose and flower food to promote blooming.
– Fertilize container gardens regularly. Add a water soluble natural all-purpose fertilizer every other week.
– Harvest beans, cucumbers and summer squash when they are young for better taste and to keep them producing.