Tip of the Week – Week 22 in the Zone 9 Garden

I am getting a lot of questions about what to do about all of this rain.  I really don’t know.  According to the weather man we are experiencing “historical rain events”.  This means that nobody really knows how all of this water is going to affect our yards and gardens.  I am certain that if all of this moisture doesn’t kill our plants out right, we are going to have problems with fungus and mold and bugs once the sun comes out.  The only advice I have right now is pray that all of these “historical rain events” end soon!

crowder-peas

Planting time is slipping away. However you can still plant southern peas like crowder and black eyes.

Vegetables

  • Pick cucumbers regularly. With this much rain it is not unreasonable to expect to harvest every day
  • Make pickles with all of those cucumbers
  • You can still plant basil. If you have basil ready to harvest pick often and pick early in the morning when flavors are strongest
  • We are nearing the end of planting season but you can still plant sweet potatoes, lima beans, okra and southern peas.  However, your planting window is closing.
Prune your climbing roses after they finish blooming

Prune your climbing roses after they finish blooming

Ornamentals

  • Prune running roses after blooms fade. Train new growth onto or around structures
  • Feed roses and other blooming shrubs. Add compost monthly and blended fertilizers every six weeks
  • All of this rain is going to make fungal diseases a problem. Inspect roses regularly for black spot or powdery mildew.  Treat with a fungicides easily found at your garden center.
  • All of this rain will leach nutrients from your potted plants. Now is a great time to replant, or at a minimum, fertilize them. I like to use a slow release fertilize like Osmocote so they are feed all summer long

Lawns

  • If you can stand it, do not mow until things dry out a bit, especially if you use a riding mower. The ground is so wet you can damage your lawn and your equipment.
This cool, wet weather has extended the time we have to plant small trees and shrubs.

This cool, wet weather has extended the time we have to plant small trees and shrubs.

Trees

  • Take advantage of the unusually cool temperatures and large amounts of water to plant small trees and shrubs. This extended planting season for trees and woody perennials is the only bright spot I can think of right now.
  • If you grow fruit trees in containers be sure and fertilize them regularly. Right now they have fruit so they need water and nutrients.  Feed weekly with a liquid organic solution like compost tea.  One of my favorite liquid organic applications is John’s Recipe from Lady Bug.

4 thoughts on “Tip of the Week – Week 22 in the Zone 9 Garden

  1. I wish you made house calls, lol. I am so baffled by gardening here in TX. In northern NV I had no problems. I know this is a good agricultural area and I see other peoples gardens with huge, nice plants. I have raised beds and got good quality soil from Vital Earth etc. and yet my plants just sit in there without advancing much. I feel like I’m always so far behind everyone else with the exception of tomatoes, those I seem to have pretty good luck with. This year I’m even further behind when I compare pics from last year at this time. I’m assuming that’s because of the rain but who knows. Not even close to harvesting anything but a few tomatoes and some herbs.

    • I feel you. So frustrating to put in the work and have disappointing results. I bet if I had to move to Northern Nevada I would have lots of troubles adapting all I have learned to that climate. Know that no matter how long I do it I have failures each year. Last year I had horrible spring tomatoes. Never figured out why, they just didn’t produce well. Don’t give up! The rain will pass and the tomatoes will come! 🙂

      • Actually it’s tomatoes I seem to have good results with usually and hot peppers. It’s everything else. I have several kinds of squash, cukes, carrots and cantaloupes and they are just sitting without advancing much. Had the same problem last year but this year is worse. Any idea why they wouldn’t grow well in soil that supposed to be good for raised beds, and yes I fertilize and do Epsom salts etc.
        Is it better to plant right in the clay here instead raised bed soil?

        • First, your soil is probably fine. Definately recommend raised beds. Do not believe in Epsom salts. That is a wives tell. Too much and you actually create a magnesium toxicity. (http://masterofhort.com/2014/05/myth-50-use-epsom-salt-on-by-c-l-fornari/). It is probably too hot for carrots. Cucumbers should e fine a should squash. Melons can be a slow starter.

          It sounds like you bought good soil. I would lay off of all amendments for a while. New soil should be rich enough to support a one year old vegetable garden. Just FYI, I add nothing to my garden beds except compost. Once a year add more and till it in. During growing season I only side dress with it or spray compost tea.

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