July 2011 Gardening Calendar
This is a once-a-month column provided to Wilson County News reader online.
It is time to harvest all your remaining tomatoes and pull the Spring planted plants. The large fruit that has turned white from green will ripen quickly in the house.
Tycoon tomatoes have fared well this year. Based on reports from gardeners and the results of the Milberger’s Top Tomato Contest. The Tycoon’s dominated the number of entrées and won the Top Tomato award. A Phoenix tomato placed second and the largest tomato at nearly two pounds was a Brandywine.
Tycoon will also be a good choice for the Fall. Gardeners characterized it as sweet tasting and juicy. The skin is tough, which means it stores well. Plant tomatoes for Fall in early August if the hot weather breaks.
The hot, dry weather has translated to very little fungus disease on tomatoes and other plants. Even snapdragons escaped rust in many plantings.
Spider mites, however, are rampant. If they overcome your tomatoes, harvest the fruit and discard the plants. Seaweed extract mixed at two tablespoons per gallon of water and applied twice per week under the leaves has kept the populations low in some gardens. Other gardeners say that Spinosad and/or neem oil have worked. None of the treatments will bring a large population under control. They are preventative treatments.
Plant okra and southern peas as quick as possible for Fall harvest. Both do well by seed. After a fast start, green peppers have seemed to decline. Harvest existing fruit and keep the plants well watered. They will perk up and set more fruit in the Fall.
Harvest the few remaining peaches when the background color changes from green to yellow. They are vulnerable to bird and squirrel feeding.
In the flower garden, plant zinnias, angelonia, and vinca if you have open space. Cosmos, purslane and moss roses are also good choices. All three are deer resistant in some neighborhoods, including mine. If you plant them where deer wonder, spray them with Liquid Fence to discourage any inclination by the deer to test them.
Use “Cora” vinca for the best resistance to the fungal disease aerial phytophera. My favorite zinnia is “Dreamland.” The flowers are large and rounded with strong colors of yellow, red, lavender, pink and off-white.
The big challenge in the landscape this month will be to keep the lawn green. Many communities have declared drought restrictions. Comply with the restrictions to help keep from falling deeper into restrictions and plan your watering to be efficient and effective.
• Water in the morning or evening even if you do not have specified times to water. Avoid irrigating when the wind is blowing and the temperatures are high.
• Add enough water per application to fill the whole soil reservoir. Sandy soils, however, do best with frequent shallow watering.
• Keep the irrigation system in good shape. Repair leaks as they are discovered and do a regular inspection.
• Hand water special spots where the irrigation system does not cover well.
If your lawn is Bermuda, buffalo grass or zoysia you can make the decision to let it go dormant. Those grasses have the ability to recover quickly when the rains resume.
Drip irrigation is the most efficient way to water your vegetables and flowers. There are kits available at retail nurseries and the big box stores so you can do it yourself. An option that is nearly as efficient and very easy to use is to string leaky hoses along the rows or from plant to plant. The water “sweats” out of the hose along its length to provide water at the soil surface. The key is to turn the hose on at low pressure. If flow is high, the water spurts out and you lose the efficiency.
Calvin R. Finch, PhD, is a SAWS Director and Horticulturist.
Your Opinions and Comments
Be the first to comment on this story!
You must be logged in to post a comment.
Agriculture Today Archives
Beef Cattle Management seminar (August 26, 2015)
Cotton root rot and its symptoms (August 26, 2015)
Feral hogs, water workshop (August 26, 2015)
Get acquainted with 4-H event (August 26, 2015)
Harvey places in top 20 (August 26, 2015)
Hay & Forage Report (August 26, 2015)
Livestock Market Reports (August 26, 2015)
Mobile app for hunting regs (August 26, 2015)
Registration for cattle conference (August 26, 2015)
Survey deadline (August 26, 2015)
Turkey fed to improve Texas grasslands (August 26, 2015)
Wilson County 4-H Council, Booster meetings, Sept. 2 (August 26, 2015)
Anthrax confirmed in equine in Uvalde County (August 19, 2015)
Deer association: Environmental group deceives deer industry, wildlife community (August 19, 2015)
Don’t miss your shot! Apply for drawn hunts (August 19, 2015)
Feral hog management workshop is Sept. 4 (August 19, 2015)
Hay & Forage Report (August 19, 2015)
Livestock Market Reports (August 19, 2015)
Prospects bright for dove season (August 19, 2015)
Saving tomatoes from the Texas heat (August 19, 2015)
Siblings make rodeo memories (August 19, 2015)
TDA Market Report (August 19, 2015)
Chagas disease in South Central Texas (August 12, 2015)
Eastern equine encephalitis cases reported in Texas (August 12, 2015)
Hay & Forage Report (August 12, 2015)
Leaf-dropping is common (August 12, 2015)
Livestock Market Reports (August 12, 2015)
New, stronger El Niño may bring another wet winter (August 12, 2015)
Pieniazek elected president of ag education leadership (August 12, 2015)
EPA ‘muddies’ Clean Water Act (August 5, 2015)
Hay & Forage Report (August 5, 2015)
It’s a ‘banner’ summer for Payton! (August 5, 2015)
Lantanas losing luster; mosquitoes a bother (August 5, 2015)
Livestock Market Reports (August 5, 2015)
Meuths receive Bronze Merit Award (August 5, 2015)
Shoot to benefit Don Newbury (August 5, 2015)
TDA Market Report (August 5, 2015)
August 2015 Gardening Calendar (August 1, 2015)