August Gardening: Maintenance & cleanup

For the month of August, here is a list of maintenance and cleanup tasks for gardening:

  • Compost your lawn clippings and garden plants that are ready to be recycled. If your lawn has been treated with herbicide, don’t use the clippings. Don’t use diseased plants unless you are hot composting.
  • Protect ornamentals and garden plants from hot weather using mulch. You may need to give them temporary shade if they were recently planted.
  • For camellias, remember to water deeply to develop flower buds for next spring.
  • After harvest, don’t forget to prune raspberries, boysenberries, and other caneberries. Look for holes in raspberries near the soil line, at the base of the plant, made by crown borers. Remove affected wood before adults emerge (around mid-August).
  • Monitor garden irrigation closely so your crops and ornamentals don’t dry out.
  • For lawns to stay green, you’ll have to water frequently during heat and drought. Water 0.25 inches four to six times per week from June through August. Measure your water use by placing an empty can where your irrigation water lands.
  • Prune cherry trees before fall rains begin to allow callusing in dry weather. This will minimize the spread of bacterial canker.

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